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You are what you drink.

You are what you drink.

The importance of hydration to your health.

Water is life. Are you drinking enough to stay healthy and happy? Your body is 45%-75% water.1 From your brain and all your cells to every system and organ, every part of you needs water to function properly.

When you consume enough water each day, your body pays you back by:

  • Preventing infections

  • Lubricating your joints

  • Delivering oxygen and nutrients to your cells

  • Helping your skin stay youthful-looking

  • Helping you lose weight

  • Increasing energy and brain function

Staying hydrated can improve the quality of your sleep. If you’re hydrated but still not sleeping well, here are four ways to master your sleep.

Most experts agree that starting your day with a tall glass of water has many health benefits.2
And here are even more reasons water should be your go-to drink.

Below are recommendations for daily water intake to keep your body healthy and happy (and these numbers go up if you’re in a hot climate or exercising):

  • Children: 1-6

  • Children: 7-18

  • Adults:

    Men

    Women

    Pregnant women

    Breastfeeding women

  • Encourage water consumption; limit juice to one glass per day

  • 6-8 Cups* (More when exercising)

  • 13 Cups

    9 Cups

    10 Cups

    12 Cups

  • Irritability, lethargy, sunken eyes, fewer tears when crying, minimal urination 4

  • Headache, dizziness, cramps, extreme fatigue 5

  • Less frequent urination, dark/odorous urine, headache, dizziness, cramps, excessive fatigue, confusion 6

*1 cup = 8 oz.

You can usually resolve mild dehydration by drinking more water, but if you’re getting enough hydration and still feeling unwell, talk to an MDLIVE board-certified doctor in minutes.

Does it have to be water?

No. You can also drink other beverages that are mostly water. Just try to avoid drinks that contain a lot of added sugar and empty calories.

While coffee and tea count toward your water intake, too much caffeine can cause insomnia, nervousness, and headaches. Everyone varies in their ability to tolerate caffeine and how fast they metabolize it. The Mayo Clinic recommends no more than 400 mg of caffeine daily, which is equal to about four or five cups of coffee. (1 cup = 8 oz.)

Alcohol removes water and essential nutrients from your body. Drinking extra water before and after an alcoholic drink can help prevent dehydration.7

  • DRINK UP!

    Water

    Milk

    Coffee

    Herbal tea

  • NOT SO MUCH!

    Regular soda

    Energy drinks

    Sweetened juices and fruit drinks

    Alcohol

Water-filled foods will help keep you hydrated too.

Many fruits and vegetables are almost 100% water and have the added benefit of providing your body with vitamins and minerals, like calcium, magnesium, vitamin C, and vitamin K.8 Eat more of these foods to stay hydrated:

  • Cucumbers

  • Celery

  • Iceberg lettuce

  • Zucchini

  • Watermelon

  • Strawberries

  • Cauliflower

  • Peaches

You may be chronically dehydrated if you suffer from headaches, constipation, dizziness, or fatigue. Talk to an MDLIVE board-certified doctor 24/7 for dehydration and more than 80 common medical conditions, including:

 

  • Allergies
  • Cold & Flu
  • Cough
  • Ear Pain
  • Headache
  • Insect Bites
  • Prescriptions
  • Pink Eye
  • Rash
  • Sinus Problems
  • And more.

Andres Gomez