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Don’t Overlook This Life Necessity: Water

Girl Drinking Water

By Ruby Laine

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Ruby Laine (she/her) is a current undergraduate student at The George Washington University pursuing a Bachelor's of Science in Public Health. She is passionate about improving health outcomes for underserved communities, families, and children. She wishes

to assist in expanding access to healthcare and promote healthy lifesyle behaviors. She has previously worked with the NYC City Council in District 2 under Carlina Rivera while being an advocate for constituents and the community. As a member of the editorial team of Today’s Patient as a Senior Contributor, Ruby focuses on reaching out to wider audiences, to spread awareness for health concerns and improve health literacy. 

How much water should one be drinking per day?
The amount of water one person’s body needs can differ based on physical activity, medical conditions, using medications, and how much water intake you are getting from your diet. For instance, increased physical activity should mean you drink more water to make up for the water you are losing as sweat. There is currently no average recommendation, however, The U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine suggests an adequate intake of fluids daily should be about 15.5 cups for men and 11.5 cups for women. Yet most 
people don’t know that this number is much more personalized in actuality.

Why is it so important to stay hydrated?
Water is one of life’s essentials and it does a lot to protect your body and to keep you moving. Water helps regulate your body temperature, gets waste to move through the body, assists in lubricating and protecting joints as well as your spinal cord and sensitive tissues. Water dissolves minerals and nutrients to easily be absorbed by the body and carries nutrients
and oxygen to your cells.

How do you know if you are dehydrated?
The most clear sign of your hydration levels is the color of your urine. The more yellow it is the more water you need to drink, and if it's pretty much clear you are already drinking 
enough. Other symptoms that might indicate dehydration include dizziness, confusion, body weakness, low blood pressure, which in extreme cases can cause fainting.

What is counter productive for staying hydrated?
There are moments that your body needs more water than what is typically recommended. Like previously mentioned, increased physical activity is one, additionally, when in hot climates, when you have a fever, and when experiencing vomiting or diarrhea. Drinks with added sugars are less hydrating and can dehydrate you further. Alcohol is a diuretic, which
means it helps remove excess water and causes dehydration. Coffee, tea, and soda, are all mild diuretics which can still result in increased dehydration, but not as much as alcohol can.

What helps you stay hydrated?
Foods that have high water intake like watermelon and celery are great hydration boosters. Straight fruit or vegetable juices, coconut water, sparkling water, and even flavored waters are good low calorie alternatives to hydrate, in addition to water at zero calories.

What are some tips to remind yourself throughout the day?
As someone who has struggled with drinking enough water purely because of remembering, having it around you makes all the difference. Carrying a water bottle allows for you to have access whenever you want, as well as at your ideal temperature (I need cold water to enjoy it). Try to drink water with your meals, not only is this an easy way to get a glass in instead of another choice, but you will also save money. If it is the taste that turns you off, try adding a little citrus, like lemon or lime to add some extra flavor.


Water has the power to clear skin, trigger weight loss, and strengthen teeth. Don’t disregard its powers and might as well take advantage of this not so secret weapon.

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