How to Drink More Water

You’ve probably been told to drink more water many times in your life. A common recommendation is 8 glasses a day. This is easy to remember, but does not measure your personal level of hydration. You may need more or less depending on the weather, your health, and how much you exercise.

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Creating a Habit - Drink More Water

Why Drink More Water

Improve Memory and Focus

Extreme dehydration can lead to hallucinations and delirium. However, even mild dehydration impairs mental performance. The University of St. Louis published an article on the effects of dehydration on mental capacity covering a wide age range.

Suppress Appetite

We are often thirsty when we think we are hungry. Drinking more water may help calm those pangs in your stomach and fill you up so there isn’t as much room for food if you do decide to eat. As Nestle proclaims,

“It contains no calories, fat or cholesterol, and is low in sodium!”

Avoid Digestive Problems

Water is necessary for a properly functioning digestive system. Our stomach lining is mostly made up of water, so dehydration increases problems with stomach acid. Water and fiber also help you avoid constipation, which often results from dehydration.

Save Money

Water is often free or cheap. If you replace other drinks with water this could save you money over time. I’m particularly aware of this at restaurants where I’m already paying a lot for my meal compared to what I could pay if I ate at home.

Keep Strength and Energy

Dehydration makes you more tired and weaker than you would be at peak performance. Look at this list of side effects!

“Under relatively mild levels of dehydration, individuals engaging in rigorous physical activity will experience decrements in performance related to reduced endurance, increased fatigue, altered thermoregulatory capability, reduced motivation, and increased perceived effort.”

Study from the University of North Carolina

Cure Headaches

There are lots of possible causes for headaches, but dehydration is a common one. Try staying hydrated to avoid this discomfort.

Grow Healthy Skin

Our cells are mostly made up of water. When they are properly hydrated, cells function as they are supposed to. Water is necessary for healthy, glowing skin. If you don’t see results right away check again after a week or two of increasing your water intake! If you have been dehydrated, it will take time for your cells to turn over.




Creating a Habit - Drink More Water

Tips for Drinking More Water

Carry a Bottle

Making it convenient to drink more water will go a long ways toward helping you create a habit.

Set a Reminder

Setting an alarm on your phone to go off at certain times will prompt you to drink if you’ve forgotten.

Add Flavoring

If you don’t like the taste of plain water, add some lemon or lime juice, or cucumber for subtle flavor without many calories.

Replace Other Drinks with Water

Start off slow such as replacing every third drink and then every second drink to ease into it.

Drink when You are Hungry

The body’s signals for hunger and thirst are often confused. Start with a glass of water whenever you feel the urge to munch.

Track It

Use an app on your phone or a notebook to check it off every time you finish a glass. You’ll be able to see how you improve every day!

Get a Special Bottle

Some bottles come pre-marked with time-oriented drinking goals and a fruit infuser like this one.  You could also mark any bottle with a sharpie or tape.

Make a Rule

We already talked about drinking when you are hungry but you could also say something like no coffee until you’ve had a glass of water. Pick something that will work for you!

Fit it into Your Schedule

This year I’ve been much more consistent about my water intake. I set regular times to have a glass of water so that it’s dispersed throughout my day. Here’s an example:

1. At breakfast
2. At my desk while working
3. During my break
4. At my desk while working
5. During lunch
6. At my desk while working
7. While doing chores
8. At supper

The hardest one to get in is #7 because that’s the most variable part of my day. Otherwise my habit is pretty regular! I also try to have my last glass a few hours before bed so that I don’t wake up during the night.

Go High Tech

Daily Water Free allows you to quickly track your drinks with a tap. It allows you to customize to your usual glass volume and number of glasses you want to aim for per day. You can setup a notification schedule within the app to remind you to drink. View your history by week or month to track your progress!

Hidrate Spark Water Bottle does all the tracking for you. It reminds you when it’s been too long since your last sip by glowing (replaceable battery lasts over a year). The bottle syncs to an app on your phone, and even takes into account your activity level and the local climate for its water recommendation.




Other Fluids

Drinking water straight is not the only way to stay hydrated, just the most efficient. Other drinks you have during the day all count toward your total fluid intake. Even food contains some water. Some fruits and veggies with high water content are:

• Broccoli
• Cantaloupe
• Cauliflower
• Celery
• Cucumber
• Grapefruit
• Green Pepper
• Lettuce
• Oranges
• Peaches
• Pineapple
• Radishes
• Raspberries
• Spinach
• Strawberries
• Tomatoes
• Watermelon
• Zucchini

Go Forth and Hydrate!

Since I began tracking my water intake, I am much more aware of minor dehydration that I used to be. It’s easier to drink those 8 glasses a day now because I notice my thirst. I work at home, so I just use a regular glass instead of a water bottle most of the time. The trick is to just keep water with you everywhere you go! Do you drink enough?

2 comments

I’ve noticed one of the best purchases I’ve made over the last few years is a large water bottle. By making it easy to drink water all day, because I don’t have to get up and get a refill every hour, I actually achieve the water goal. Now, I notice if I’m dehydrated, I’m pretty grouchy!

That’s great! I really notice being dehydrated now, too. On our latest vacation I did much better because I made sure we had plenty of bottled water in the car.

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