Studies have produced varying recommendations over the years. But your individual water needs depend on many factors, including your health, how active you are and where you live.
No single formula fits everyone. But knowing more about your body’s need for fluids will help you estimate how much water to drink each day.
So how much fluid does the average, healthy adult living in a temperate climate need? The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that an adequate daily fluid intake is:
- About 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men
- About 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women
You don’t need to rely only on what you drink to meet your fluid needs. What you eat also provides a significant portion. For example, many fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon and spinach, are almost 100 percent water by weight.
According to Jessica Fishman Levinson, Registered Dietitian and Culinary Nutrition Expert; your diet plays a big role in your water intake. Foods that already contain a lot of water think brussels sprouts, celery, and cabbage get rid of unwanted fluids, so you will want to drink more water to replace what was excreted.
On the other hand, foods that have a lot of sodium — like some popcorns and soup — will do the opposite, causing your body to retain water, and in turn, increase your blood pressure. You’ll be thirsty for a reason: Your body is begging for some water; even mild dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired.