It's true -- water is the best thing for you. No matter how you try to argue in favor of other beverages, water is what helps your body function through each day. It plays a vital role in your health, from aiding weight loss to helping you maintain clear skin and more. But you may be wondering, how much water should you actually drink in a day? We've all heard different numbers for this, but we're going to break down how much water you should drink in a day and WHY it varies from person to person.
WebMD breaks it down to its most simple terms: “In general, you should try to drink between half an ounce and an ounce of water for each pound you weigh, every day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, that would be 75 to 150 ounces of water a day.”
Amanda Carlson, RD, director of performance nutrition at Athletes’ Performance, trains many world-class athletes and has personal insight into how much water people drink -- and how they’re often not drinking as much as they truly need. In my experience, most people are not aware of how much they’re drinking and are not drinking enough -- many, as little as half of what they need,” she says.
“Water’s involved in every type of cellular process in your body, and when you’re dehydrated, they all run less efficiently -- and that includes your metabolism. Think of it like your car: if you have enough oil and gas, it will run more efficiently. It’s the same with your body.”
Additionally, Trent Nessler, PT, DPT, MPT, managing director of Baptist Sports Medicine in Nashville, explains how the metabolism works and how the proper amount of water is so vital for the metabolism. He explains that the metabolism is essentially a series of chemical reactions that happen in the body - and staying hydrated keeps all of those reactions functioning normally and smoothly. In fact, just being 1% dehydrated can cause a massive drop in metabolism.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is, it's actually not that difficult to understand when you go by the example from WebMD, right? It's not a one-size-fits-all deal, and it varies based on your weight and size, which is obviously different from person to person. The easiest way to stay consistently hydrated is keeping a water bottle with you throughout the day - perhaps your favorite water bottle to motivate you to drink up!