How Much Water Should You Drink In A Day?
Global studies have shown that the benefits of water, such as clear skin and detoxed bodies, have been oversold and that drinking too much of it can be harmful to our health.
But what about the low calories, loss of appetite, muscle strength and healthy organ properties that the world’s most vital drink promotes? These are still true, but the key question here is are you drinking enough water or too much water? If you’re drinking too much water, here are the risks you face:
It might come as a surprise to hear that you can get overhydrated. It’s called hyponatremia – a condition where there is a dangerously low level of sodium (salt) in the blood. This happens when you drink more water than the kidneys can filter out.
Drinking too much water can cause hyperhidrosis – this is excessive sweating. No, it’s not the healthy kind of sweating; it’s the pouring, running-down-your-body kind of sweating you need to watch out for.
INSOMNIA (INABILITY TO SLEEP)
Before we sleep, our body releases ADH (Anti-Diuretic Hormone) that slows down kidney function and prevents us needing to pee during sleep. Drinking too much before bed stops this important hormone from doing its job – so you end up waking up to pee during the night which causes lack of sleep and makes you grumpy!
HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH?
A good amount of water to drink is two litres per day. The National Health Service (NHS) in the United Kingdom recommends 1.6 litres – endocrinologist Stanley Liew of Raffles Hospital, Singapore, agrees with this: “On average, water intake of 1.5 litres or six glasses a day is enough.” Unless you’re in a desert or can’t get access to clean drinking water, anything more than 1.5 litres an hour is not healthy.
How do you tell if you’ve had too much? The next time you take a pee, look at the colour of your urine. It should be a light or pale yellow colour. If it’s darker, it’s a signal you need to drink more. But if it’s very light or almost clear, you are drinking too much water.