When Should You Drink Water? Your Guide to Hydration

When Should You Drink Water? Your Guide to Hydration

Water is essential for our survival. It makes up around 60% of our body weight and plays a crucial role in almost every bodily function. But when should we drink water? While the simple answer might seem like "all the time," there are certain times when focusing on hydration is especially important.

Listen to Your Thirst, But Don't Rely Solely on It

Our bodies are pretty good at reminding us when we need water. Feeling thirsty is a signal that dehydration has already begun. However, waiting until you're thirsty can lead to headaches, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating.

Here are some key times to prioritise hydration:

  • First Thing in the Morning: After a long night's sleep, your body is slightly dehydrated. Drinking a glass of water first thing can rehydrate and kickstart your metabolism.
  • Before, During, and After Exercise: Physical activity leads to sweating, which can deplete your fluid levels. Aim to drink water before, during, and after exercise to stay hydrated and prevent fatigue.
  • Throughout the Day: Aim to sip water consistently throughout the day, even if you don't feel thirsty. Carrying a reusable water bottle is a great way to ensure you're getting enough fluids.
  • Hot Weather: When it's hot or humid, you sweat more to regulate your body temperature. Increase your water intake in hot weather to avoid dehydration.
  • When You're Sick: Diarrhoea, vomiting, and fever can all lead to dehydration. Drinking plenty of fluids is crucial when you're sick to help your body recover.

How Much Water Should You Drink?

There's no one-size-fits-all answer to how much water you should drink. Several factors can influence your individual needs, such as your activity level, climate, and overall health. However, a good general guideline is to drink around 4 litres (or 16 cups) of water per day.

Here are some additional tips to stay hydrated:

  • Eat Water-Rich Foods: Many fruits and vegetables, like watermelon, cucumber, and celery, have a high water content and can contribute to your daily intake.
  • Bring a Water Bottle: Carry a water bottle anywhere to remind you to drink your water. AquaFlask offers an affordable and eco-friendly insulated water bottle that can keep your beverage cold for 24 hours or hot for 12 hours - it also comes in different sizes and colours, allowing you to style your hydration.
  • Flavour Your Water: Adding slices of lemon, cucumber, or berries to your water can make it more appealing to drink.
  • There's an App for That! There are many hydration reminder apps available that can help you track your water intake and set goals.

Listen to Your Body

While the tips above provide a good starting point, it's important to pay attention to your body's individual needs. Signs of dehydration can include dark urine, fatigue, headache, and constipation. If you're experiencing any of these symptoms, increase your water intake and consult a doctor if necessary.