Water is essential for the body, because without water people can only survive a few days. It shouldn’t be too much liquid either. Which amount is the right one?
It is the basis of all life and even our body consists of more than half of it: water is the most important foodstuff for humans. If we don’t drink enough liquid, the metabolism is disturbed and our physical and mental performance decreases. Water flushes out pollutants in the form of urine and cools our body in the form of sweat. According to health magazines, water should make us healthier, more beautiful and happier. So drinking a lot helps a lot? The calculation is not that simple.
Body loses two liters of water a day
Overall, we lose two liters of fluid a day even without much exercise, which should be replenished by drinking enough. About half of the people drink too little. Our body cannot store water and needs constant replenishment. If we drink too little, we get thirsty, at some point we can no longer think clearly, kidneys and circulation fail. Typical signs of dehydration are also dry and chapped lips and a loss of skin elasticity. The body cannot survive without water for more than four days.
Too much water overwhelms the metabolism
But can we drink too much? In fact, if we drink eight or nine liters in a very short time, it can cause a kind of water intoxication. The body is completely overwhelmed with these large amounts of water: the urine production cannot metabolize the liquid, which results in dizziness and nausea. In extreme situations, too much water can even lead to unconsciousness and death. Inexperienced endurance athletes in particular often drink incorrectly.
Drink at least one and a half liters of water a day
What is often forgotten is that food also keeps the body hydrated. We absorb almost a third of our daily needs through our food. Fruits and vegetables and even french fries contain a high percentage of water. So we don’t have to drink a lot anymore. The rule of thumb: one and a half liters a day is enough to provide the body with enough liquid. In the case of physical exertion or heat, however, it should be more. Rather than accurately measuring your daily water intake, it’s best to listen to your body and drink when you’re thirsty.
Tap water or better mineral water?
Whether tap water or mineral water is purely a matter of taste. Depending on the region, tap water contains at least as many minerals, sometimes even more than many still mineral waters – and it is significantly cheaper. In addition, tap water is the best controlled foodstuff and the water suppliers guarantee consistent quality up to the water meter. In the morning you should let tap water run a little before drinking. Or just hop in the shower before filling up something for tea or coffee.
Water analysis in old lead pipes
In old houses, the tap water can be contaminated due to lead pipes. If you want to be sure, you should ask the property manager or have the water tested. Many waterworks offer analyzes for around 30 euros. If pregnant women or babies live in the house, the examination is often free of charge.
Do not drink ice-cold water when it is hot
However, if you want to refresh yourself with a cold glass of water in hot or muggy weather, you should be careful: the drink should not be too cold. Because if you drink ice-cold beverages when your body is overheated, you risk a sudden drop in temperature. The body then has to work hard to turn “ice cold” back into “body warm”. This drives up blood pressure and stimulates sweating even more.