Your body is around 60% water. Water is vital for your cells, skin, and immunity, and it helps regulate your temperature and plenty of other body functions. Given its crucial role, it's essential you drink the water your body needs every day.
Though water is an essential nutrient, your body can't produce it on its own. In addition to the water you get from the foods you eat, you need to drink more water to meet healthy daily levels. Use these 12 simple tips to help you set and meet your water goals.
1. Understand How Much Water You Should Drink
To learn how to drink more water, you first need to understand how much water you need every day. This number varies based on your age, activity level, diet, and other factors. In general, the recommendation for how much water you should drink in a day is:
- Adult men: Around 3 liters or about 100 ounces.
- Adult women: Around 2.2 liters or about 75 ounces.
In terms of how many glasses of water to drink each day, these recommendations translate to about 12.5 8-ounce glasses for men and a little over nine 8-ounce glasses for women.
Though water consumption is essential and helpful, you can drink too much water. Some individuals may get overzealous as they hydrate, which can be dangerous. Known as water intoxication, this rare phenomenon occurs when you consume too much water for your kidneys to process. Water intoxication comes with symptoms such as nausea, headaches, difficulty breathing, confusion, and other impacts on your body's functions. In severe cases, it may cause brain cells to swell, which puts pressure on the skull and may lead to other harmful symptoms.
The amount of water that becomes too much to handle varies across studies and individuals. In general, you should avoid drinking more than a liter of water within an hour. While water intoxication is rare, it can occur, especially in athletes, military personnel, and those with specific mental health conditions. Pace yourself as you drink and monitor yourself for those symptoms if you find you're consuming a lot of water within an hour.
Recommended intake numbers serve as useful guidelines for how much water you should or shouldn't drink, but one of the best ways to make sure you get the water your body needs is to drink when you're thirsty. Even occasional sips will help you feel hydrated while you listen to your body to avoid drinking too much.
2. Use Larger Drinking Containers
As long as you're pacing yourself, a large drinking container can be a convenient way to get your daily water intake. You won't have to refill it as often, which is helpful if you're headed out for the day. You can also choose larger, reusable water bottles, which are better for the planet and your budget. Some of the benefits you can enjoy with a reusable drinking container include:
- Saving money with a one-time purchase.
- Preventing litter and marine debris.
- Reducing toxic components from the manufacture and use of plastic bottles.
- Using fewer plastics and materials.
Find a reusable container that holds the specific amount of water you need in a day, or get a larger size if you prefer. Make sure your reusable container is a comfortable size for your routine. If you get a bottle that is awkward to transport or too heavy to comfortably carry and you spend your days traveling, you may not want to carry the container and use it properly. If you can manage a larger container, it may be beneficial in the following situations:
- You get caught up in work and don't have time to get up often for water.
- You're working out, walking, or playing a sport.
- You're running errands all day and can't refill your water.
3. Use a Container With Markings
A clear water bottle with markings can help you see how much water you've had. You can either buy a container that comes with measurement lines or add your own based on how much you want to drink. Some people use their water bottle measurements to track how much water they should consume by a certain time of day, depending on what they eat and when they exercise.
Whether you create your own or purchase one, a container with markings helps you:
- Visualize your progress throughout the day.
- Keep track of your intake for the day.
- Avoid drinking too much water at once.
- Get a sense of how much water you need in a day.
With those benefits, you'll feel a sense of progress as you drink water throughout the day, and it may be easier to track your water goals as the day goes on. Consider your lifestyle and needs when using markings to decide how much you need to drink so your water bottle works best for you.
4. Use Apps to Track Your Intake
Use the fact that your phone and your water bottle are by your side and search for apps that help you track your intake. There is a wide variety to choose from, so download a few and see what works best for you. In general, water tracker apps fall into categories like these:
- Health and food trackers that let you monitor water along with exercise and food intake.
- Self-care trackers that can remind you when to go to sleep, relax, and drink water.
- Fun apps that use your water intake to water and grow digital plants.
- Apps that take your climate and other factors into account for personalized recommendations.
When you use a water intake app, you can set and track your goals. This helps hold you accountable, especially if there is a social aspect where you and your friends can follow each other's progress. Even if you use the app on your own, you'll be able to see your progress and get a sense of accomplishment as you develop the healthy habit of drinking enough water.
5. Replace Other Drinks With Water
If you drink soda, iced tea, or other sugary drinks throughout the day, replace them with water. It's a healthier way to get your water intake for the day, but for some, it's a bit of a lifestyle change. Consider these steps to phase out other drinks:
- Start by replacing one beverage a day with water.
- Work up to only drinking water with your meals.
- Save other sugary drinks to have at restaurants or special occasions.
Soda drinkers may want to try sparkling or mineral water for a familiar fizz that helps you hydrate. This change may be a bit difficult at first, but if you mostly consume drinks at mealtimes, switching to water can be a significant help in meeting your daily intake goals.
6. Add Some Flavor In
Cutting out flavorful drinks entirely can be a bit of a challenge. Make the switch a bit easier with flavored water. You can make your own flavored water with healthy additions in large, convenient batches. Some common options to flavor your water include:
- A squeeze of fresh lemon, lime, or orange juice
- Fresh herbs like mint
- Sliced cucumbers
- Strawberries and other berries
Get creative with the flavors you add so you enjoy staying hydrated. If this method appeals to you, get an infusion water bottle or keep a small pitcher of flavored water in your fridge. You can even add flavors to sparkling or mineral water if you're missing the carbonation and flavor of soda.
Drinking plain water is the best alternative to sugary drinks or flavored water, but fresh flavors can make a world of difference if you find it difficult to make the switch from other drinks to water. Try to cut back on flavorful add-ins and prioritize drinking plain water over time. As you transition, you can use fresh flavors as a treat or to satisfy cravings for other beverages.
7. Eat Water-Rich Foods
Drinking from a reusable water bottle isn't the only way to get your water intake. Plenty of water-rich foods help you hydrate and reach your water goals. Fruits and vegetables have vitamins your body needs, and they also contain plenty of water. Common fruits and vegetables with high water content include:
You probably consume some of that produce already, but you can prioritize them if you're trying to increase your water intake. Eat water-rich foods for a snack or include them in your meals to help get a bit more water in your diet. Depending on how much you eat and how you prepare it, you may be able to skip a few ounces of drinking water for the day.
8. Fill Your Water Bottle Every Time It's Empty
You won't remember to drink if your water bottle is empty, and it can be inconvenient if you're thirsty and have nothing on hand. Getting up and filling your water bottle will remind you to drink plenty of water and keep a drinking source nearby.
You can also place multiple water bottles throughout your home and fill them up at the start of the day, depending on your plans. Even if you don't fill the water bottles you have around, they can remind you to drink water for the day. Consider placing extra drinking containers in the following areas:
- By your bed
- At your workplace
- On your desk at home
- By the door for when you leave
Some also leave a water bottle in their car, but if your vehicle gets too hot, you won't want to leave your water bottle there. Instead, keep an empty one in your purse, gym bag, or another bag you bring with you when you leave the house. If you don't carry a bag, keep a water bottle near your wallet or keys.
9. Set Reminders
You should listen to your body when it's thirsty, but sometimes you're too busy to notice. People who are often dehydrated or who have certain medical conditions may not even experience thirst. Aging and taking some medications can also lead to an absence of thirst. In these cases, you may need to take extra steps to remember to hydrate when you don't feel thirsty, and setting reminders is an ideal way to stay on track.
Use reminders or alarms in your phone to notify you to drink water periodically until you develop the habit of drinking throughout the day. Set as many notifications as you need, including:
- In the morning not long after your alarm goes off.
- Around the time you eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
- Before the time you usually start your bedtime routine.
Start with those times and add other alarms about once an hour. You should try to drink at least a cup or two of water an hour, unless you need more while exercising. If you're using hydration apps, they may offer reminders so you don't need to create your own. You can also set desktop reminders while you're working so you can remember to take a water break.
10. Drink a Glass Before Each Meal
Before you sit down to eat, have an 8-ounce glass of water. Drinking a glass of water before breakfast, lunch, and dinner can help keep you on track for your water goals during the day. You may also experience some of the health benefits of drinking water before your meal, including:
- It makes you feel fuller before you eat.
- It helps you focus on what you're eating.
- It coats your stomach and eases the impact of acidic foods.
Drinking water with your meal is a healthy choice, but it may not provide the same benefits as having the glass of water before you eat.
11. Start and End Your Day With a Glass
When you wake up, you may feel a bit dehydrated. If you normally drink coffee in the morning, start with a glass of water first. Keeping a glass of water by your bed to drink in the morning and at night can help you remember to drink your water. Hydrating before you sleep and in the morning can provide the following benefits:
- Improve your sleep.
- Improve your energy during the day.
- Prevent a dry throat and mouth in the morning.
- Reduce cramps as you sleep.
Hydrating throughout the day contributes to those benefits as well, but ending your day with a drink of water can ensure a better sleep experience. It may also help you avoid late-night snacking if you reach for a glass of water instead of sweets or a sugary drink before bed.
Staying hydrated throughout the day and before you sleep is vital if you breathe through your mouth in your sleep, snore, or have sleep apnea. You can become dehydrated sooner with those issues, and tracking your hydration can help you achieve the sleep and health benefits of drinking water.
12. Make Clean Water Accessible in Your Home
With clean water easily accessible in your home, you won't need to buy costly plastic bottles of water. Instead, you can refill your reusable container whenever you need with the best quality of water conveniently at your tap, in your home. (DD)
While many homes have municipally treated water, it could have lingering contaminants due to miles of pipes leading from municipalities and old piping in homes.. (CC) Drinking water is essential, but when that water is of poor quality, it won't be as beneficial for your health. With a drinking water system, you can get healthier, cleaner, and more delicious water. That at-home convenience can also help motivate you to stay on track with your water drinking goals.
Choose Multipure for Your Household Water Needs
Make following the tips for drinking more water easier with help from Multipure. Our drinking water filtration systems include the Multipure Aqualuxe, Aquaperform, Aquaversa, and Aquamini. Whether you want a system below your sink, on top of your counter, or for travel, a Multipure product will meet your needs and provide healthier water for you and your family. (AA) With Multipure Carbon Block filters, our systems can treat a variety of contaminants to make your water better tasting and safer to drink. You can have peace of mind knowing our systems are NSF certified.
Explore our drinking water systems today, and contact us with any questions about our products.