Water Consumption – Common Misconceptions Debunked

Water ConsumptionWater is necessary for human survival. Drinking the water your body needs promotes health. We are often advised on how much water we should ideally drink and when we should drink water. Experts say that there are a lot of misconceptions floating around about water consumption and here, we debunk some of the most common of these myths.

  • You have to drink eight glasses of water a day: Isn’t this the age-old adage? The latest Institute of Medicine recommendation says women can strive for about two liters or eight glasses a day and men should aim for three liters or 12 glasses a day of any fluid, not just water. However, many experts point out that these rules are not applicable for everybody, especially sedentary people. Drinking more water is recommended for people who live in hot climates and also those with certain medical conditions.
  • Drinking water between meals is a bad idea: There is no scientific evidence for any ill effects of drinking water between meals. Some people believe this can harm digestion, but what it actually does is reduce your appetite as your stomach feels full. This can help if you are on a weight loss plan.
  • Drinking more water flushes toxins from the body: The kidneys are a natural filter and do their job of clearing toxins from the body. Drinking excess water will not clear the toxins that form in your body and may even affect the power of the kidneys to do this.
  • Drinking lots of water can give you healthy skin: As 60 percent of human body is composed of water, drinking enough water may help skin health, but there is no scientific proof of this. Many other factors influence skin health such as genetics, diet, weather, lifestyle, and more.
  • Water consumption helps you lose weight: Drinking water increases your metabolic rate, the rate at which calories are burned. Researchers in Germany found that while water does not specifically trigger weight loss, it can speed up weight loss. Moreover, if you drink water when you are hungry, it will make you feel full and prevent you from overeating.

The bottom line is that you shouldn’t drink water in excess and take only what you need when you are thirsty. So how much water is right? Recent research from Sweden recommends round 2.5 liters of fluid a day for adults leading normal lives. The researchers say that about 500ml of this will be metabolized from our food. Add on a few cups of beverages, milk or some soup and your daily fluid needs would be met.