Water makes up around 60% of our body and we depend on it to survive. While individual needs may vary, 8 to 10 glasses or around 2 litres is a good amount to aim for every day. If you’re pregnant, older, exercising a lot or live in a sunny climate you may need more. However, please speak to your doctor if you are unsure about how much you should be drinking.
1. Use a bigger glass.
Buy a pint glass (instead of a regular one) and use it to drink water at home.
2. Carry a water bottle.
Always take a bottle of water in your bag wherever you go. Try to ensure it’s BPA free too.
3. Eat your water.
Foods like cucumber, watermelon, tomatoes and most fresh fruits and veggies have a high water content. Cucumber has up to 96% water.
4. Drink herbal tea.
Choose peppermint tea during the day and a camomile tea to switch off a few hours before bed. Try not to have it too close to your bedtime as having a full bladder can disrupt sleep. Liquorice tea should be avoided by pregnant women as it may increase the risk of preterm labour.
5. Keep a glass of cool water by your bedside.
Keep a glass of cool water by your bedside in case you get thirsty during the night. Drink it first thing in the morning when you wake up. Ideally, you want to avoid drinking too much a few hours before you go to bed or during the night as a full bladder can disrupt sleep.
6. Jazz up your water with fruit and veg.
Add slices of lime, orange, strawberries, fresh mint or cucumber to your water to make it even more refreshing and delicious.
7. Choose sparkling over a soda.
Instead of a soft drink, try sparkling water with a slice of lemon when you’re out and about.
8. Track your intake.
Try using an app to keep track if you keep forgetting or set a reminder on your calendar.
9. Hydrate between alcohol and coffee.
If you’re drinking alcohol or a lot of coffee, remember they are diuretics so please drink a glass of water in between drinks.
10. There’s more than just H20.
Smoothies, fresh juices, soups, tea, coffee, coconut water all count towards your daily water intake.
Too much of a good thing?
Remember that drinking too much water can also be an issue and lead to an imbalance of electrolytes in the body. Keep an eye when you go to the loo – your urine shouldn’t be completely colourless.
What about if you’re pregnant?
Most pregnant women can and should drink adequate amounts of water, herbal teas and eat water-rich fruits and vegetables. However, in the case of pregnant women who have severe preeclampsia (water retention, raised blood pressure and electrolyte abnormalities), water intake and output needs to be monitored in a specialist setting. Avoiding fizzy drinks and caffeine containing drinks is also useful, especially for pregnant women as they tend to be dehydrating. If you have any questions, particularly if you are pregnant, it is always best to see a medical professional.