For years and years we have heard from the media that 8, 8oz glasses of water is what every person should be drinking on a daily basis. Like most media driven dietary suggestions I began to question the number 8. I started thinking, is 8 just an average number that they found? How do I know if 8 glasses is enough for me? Is there a calculation that determined this number? So, I did my research and found some answers to my questions . . .
Where did the number 8 come from? From scientificamerican.com they point out that the 8×8 idea could have come from a study done in 1945 where they found that the amount of water intake should match the amount of calories consumed. This showed that there should be about 8, 8 oz glasses of water consumed on a daily basis. The glitch in this study is that they didn’t account for the amount of water that is taken in from the diet; like veggies, fruits, and other liquids. By drinking 8 glasses of water on top of an already healthy diet could lead to too much water, and yes that is a thing.
Even though the 8×8 seems to be a myth, how do I know how much water I should be drinking? Well, I found a hydration calculator that gives you a 10 question quiz on things like environment, exercise, and weight. These questions then lead to an answer, but again do not take into consideration how much water you are already getting from your diet. Other studies have shown that you should allow your body to guide you for how much water you need. If you are thirsty you should drink water. If you have a ton of exercise in a day and have had a lot of coffee then you might need to drink more water than usual. Let you body be your guide and listen to what it needs, as far as hydration goes, and you should never feel thirsty.
One way that I have helped myself stay on the side of hydration is by drinking a glass of water when I wake up in the morning and one before I go to bed. If you think about it we break our fast in the morning by eating but we also dehydrated ourselves for 6-8 hours while we were sleeping as well. Drinking water especially for dancers can help keep your energy level up all day particularly when in a long rehearsal. It can prevent you from headaches and keep your skin clear. There are many reasons why staying hydrated all day long is beneficial, and by breaking both the food and water fast in the morning can only lead to a healthier stronger you all day long!
Check out this blog about more reasons why you should drink water!