Water supplies must be sufficient, just like survival food is. Furthermore, your survival skills and situational awareness are what will keep you safe in an emergency, even in the worst-case scenario.
It is common knowledge that humans cannot survive without water. In fact, you will most likely die in three days without it, whereas even such simple food as this will sustain you for weeks. If you haven’t been living under a rock, then you probably know that some nutritionists and health enthusiasts insist that to be healthy, adults need to drink an entire gallon of water every single day. That is almost 4 liters — quite a lot, isn’t it?
But do humans really need that much water to function properly? What are the health benefits of drinking the right amount of water? How much water do we really need to stay fit and healthy? Why do some people need more water than others?
Today, we will try to understand water consumption better and answer these and some other questions. All professional homesteaders, real survivalists, and keen preppers should have that knowledge to maximize their survival chances.
Is Staying Hydrated Really That Important?
Can you count how many times you have heard the phrase “stay hydrated”? Probably not. Whether you’re searching for tips on how to be a better student, lose a few pounds, or improve your overall health, adequate hydration is on the list every single time. Some recommend carrying a water bottle with you at all times, and others claim that drinking a gallon of water a day works wonders for your well-being. But is drinking water really that important?
Short answer: yes, it is. Drinking enough water is vital for the proper functioning of every system in your body. Here’s what proper hydration is good for:
- Weight loss. One of the most popular tips on how to lose bodyweight is to drink water. That is because drinking water increases your metabolic rate significantly.
- Staying energized throughout the day. Believe it or not, plain water can do more good in helping you stay awake and energetic than coffee or other peculiar drinks.. This is because water transports oxygen and sugar, meaning you will have more energy to exercise, study, or deal with simple day-to-day tasks.
- Getting rid of harmful toxins and preventing intoxication. Drinking enough water helps your body remove the toxic waste products more quickly.
- Preventing headaches. Have you been suffering from headaches? That might be due to dehydration. Try drinking more water. Increasing your daily water intake is a great way to combat headaches.
- Your digestive system. Hydration is key to the proper functioning of your body and all of its organs. Guts are no exception. Drinking enough water daily helps with improving your digestive health, thus preventing constipation and other digestive issues.
Other essential benefits of hydration
- Regulating body temperature. This is especially important for those living in places where it can get boiling every once in a while. Water can manage your body temperature, allowing you to survive in extreme heat and avoid issues like overheating.
- Keeping your bodily fluids balanced. Blood, saliva, sweat, and other bodily fluids must be balanced for your body to keep functioning. When you’re dehydrated, that balance is disturbed. That, in turn, can lead to certain health-related issues. All of that can be prevented if you drink enough water every day.
- Making you smarter. Although it might sound weird at first, it is proven that drinking water helps your brain function, clearing up your thoughts and allowing you to focus on important tasks easier. Plus, sufficient hydration makes you react faster and overall improves your cognitive capabilities. That is exactly why many A+ students carry water bottles with them at all times. So, try increasing your water intake to see if it impacts your productivity. Spoiler alert: it probably will!
- Your skin. Water should be a part of your skincare routine. Drinking water is crucial if you want your skin to be clear, smooth, and shiny. Dehydration, on the other hand, causes wrinkles and makes your skin look dry and lifeless. Moreover, drinking water helps to get rid of the dark circles around your eyes. In other words, if you drink enough water, you will start feeling better and looking better at the same time.
- Improving physical performance. An adequately hydrated body will perform much better than a dehydrated one. It makes sense, given that the average water content of an adult is approximately 60 percent. Water moisturizes your tissues and your joints, makes your blood circulate faster, allowing for faster transportation of glucose and oxygen, and overall improves your bodily functions significantly. People who drink a full gallon of water a day report that their physical performance has improved, and they found it easier and more satisfying to work out.
As you can see, staying hydrated comes with many benefits for your physical health, looks, and even your mental state. Still, you might be wondering: do we really need to drink a whole gallon of water daily to achieve all of that?
How Much Water Does the Human Body Need?
As already mentioned, the adult human body is approximately 55-60 percent water. So because we’re basically half water, it makes a lot of sense that we do need to drink a lot of water to function. But how many glasses of water do you need to drink?
First and foremost, note that there is no universal dose of water that every single human being must consume every single day to maintain their health. The exact amount of water needed for the body to function adequately depends heavily on factors like weight, sex, age, activity level, etc. Some people might need more water than others. That is totally normal, as our bodies are different and unique, and so are our fluid needs.
However, although drinking a gallon of water a day might be a bit too much for most people, the general consensus is that you should try to drink about eight glasses of water a day. Keep in mind that other fluids that you consume throughout the day count as well, and so does water contained in the food that you eat.
Simply trusting your body is also a good idea: do not ignore its signals, as they are there for a reason. For example, if you feel thirsty, just drink a glass of water. Note: drink regular water, not coffee, soda, or energy drinks.
Dehydration and Its Consequences
Dehydration is a dangerous condition that stems from the body not getting the amount of water it needs or losing more fluid than it consumes.
Chronic dehydration might cause lots of health issues, such as:
- digestive issues
- skin-related issues
- chronic tiredness
- brain fog, inability to focus and concentrate
Dehydration is a prevalent issue nowadays. Have you been feeling down lately? That may be due to the lack of fluid in your body. Check the list of symptoms down below and try to up your water intake if you feel like your issues may be caused by dehydration.
Symptoms of dehydration
Signs of dehydration include:
- constant thirst
- a dry mouth
- unusual urine color
If you think that you might be dehydrated, please try drinking more. Even if you don’t start drinking a whole gallon of water a day, drinking an extra glass of water will also be nice for your health and will most likely improve your condition. If possible, please consult a doctor about your water intake.
How To Drink More Water
Some people nowadays complain that they can’t consume more water even if they wanted to. This concern is fairly understandable. We’re always in a rush, always busy, and some of us can forget to drink water even if we genuinely want to. Plus, let’s admit it: many people would rather chug a cup of coffee, a bottle of wine, or a can of soda instead of drinking plain water. If you have a well nearby, for prepping purposes you need to get deep well hand pump to collect any amount of water you need.
Here are some simple ways to increase your water intake:
- set reminders
- eat cucumbers, melons, and other water-filled fruit and vegetables
- buy a cute water bottle that will be a pleasure to drink out of
- add herbs, juice, or lemon if you don’t like the way regular water tastes
- download a special water-tracking app
Overhydration: is it a thing?
Can you drink too much water? Some medical experts warn that overhydration is real and not so good for you, although quite rare. But, of course, it depends: an active adult will most likely be wonderful after drinking a gallon of water, but they’re still are some safety rules to keep in mind.
Don’t chug it all at once. After reading about all of the benefits of drinking water and good hydration, you might get the urge to drink an unreasonable amount of water right now. Don’t. Instead, try drinking a glass of water once every few hours. Consuming too much water at once isn’t going to solve anything. It will, however, cause your sodium levels to drop very low, and as you may have guessed, this isn’t good for you at all.
When you start drinking a gallon of water a day or so, you may feel bloated at first. You will also feel that you need to pee constantly. Don’t worry: that is completely normal and will go away after a while.
Bottom line: just be reasonable. Drink when you’re thirsty, listen to your body, don’t try to chug an entire gallon at once, and you’ll be fine.
To Sum Up
Hydration is one of the key elements of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Some people claim that one needs to consume an entire gallon of water a day to stay fit and well; however, scientists say that it depends on many individual factors. Nonetheless, drinking the right amount of water is still an amazing way to take care of your well-being. Some of the benefits that come with staying hydrated include improved brain function, better physical performance, the ability to concentrate, clearer skin, etc. On the other hand, the lack of fluid in your body leads to dehydration, which, in turn, can cause certain issues. Be reasonable: overhydration is not good for you either.
Overall, just stay hydrated and don’t ignore your body. That’s pretty much it.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
If you still have any questions left, we will gladly try to answer them in the FAQ segment.
Is 128 oz of water too much?
Short answer: it depends. It is probably too much for a child but should be fine for an active adult. However, keep in mind that the amount of fluid required for the proper functioning of the body is not universal and differs from person to person. Some of the important factors are sex, age, weight, and level of activity.
Does drinking a gallon of water a day help lose belly fat?
Increasing your water intake is actually one of the most helpful tips you can give to someone who is eager to lose weight. When you’re hydrated enough, your metabolism is better. But, of course, reasonable diets and exercising have to be present as well if you want to shed a couple of pounds.
What does drinking a gallon of water for 30 days do?
At first, you will probably feel bloated. You will also notice that you’re less hungry, and you’ll feel the need to go to the bathroom more often than usual. After a while, you will start to notice all of the benefits that we talked about earlier in the article.