According to scientists, drinking the recommended eight glasses of water a day may be too much for our actual needs.
Since about half of our daily water intake comes from food, researchers estimate that we only need 1.3 to 1.8 liters per day instead of two.
Previous studies in this area have relied on surveys applied to small samples of people, but more than 90 scientists around the world have now teamed up to measure water turnover using a different technique.
Since about half of our daily intake of water comes from food, researchers estimate that we only need 1.3 to 1.8 liters per day instead of two
They surveyed 5,604 people between eight days and 96 years old from 23 different countries.
The participants drank a measured amount of water enriched with the element deuterium, which occurs naturally in the human body and is completely harmless.
They measured the rate at which the deuterium disappeared from the body, showing how quickly the water in the body turned.
Analysis, published in the journal Science, revealed that those living in hot and humid environments and at high altitudes, as well as athletes, pregnant and breastfeeding women, needed more water the higher their turnover was.
Professor John Speakman, one of the authors from the University of Aberdeen, said water turnover does not equate to drinking water needs.
“Even if a man in his 20s has an average water turnover of 4.2 liters per day, he would not need to drink 4.2 liters of water per day,” he said.
‘About 15 percent of this value comes from the exchange of surface water and water produced by metabolism.
‘The actual required water intake is about 3.6 liters per day. Since most foods also contain water, a significant amount of water is provided by eating alone.
“This study shows that the common suggestion that we should all drink eight glasses of water is probably too ambitious for most people in most situations.”
Drinking the recommended eight glasses probably isn’t harmful, he explained, but it’s also unnecessary in most cases.
“The calculations suggest that a typical middle-aged man should drink about 1.6 to 1.8 liters per day and a typical woman of the same age about 1.3 to 1.4 liters,” he said.
‘For people in their eighties that can drop to about 1.1 liters per day.
“But it depends a lot on what kind of food they eat. If they drink a lot of soup, for example, they should drink less.’
Tea, coffee, fizzy drinks and fruit juices also count toward the daily total, he said, but they also contain other things that may not be healthy.
Co-author Dale Schoeller, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said: ‘Science has never supported the old eight-glass thing as an appropriate guideline, if only because it confused total water sales with water from beverages and many of your water. comes from the food you eat.
“But this work is the best we’ve done to date to measure how much water people actually consume on a daily basis — the turnover of water in and out of the body — and the key factors driving water turnover.”
It comes after doctors this week claimed that Kung Fu legend Bruce Lee may have died from drinking too much water.
The martial arts star and Hollywood icon passed away in 1973 at the age of 32.
Doctors ruled that his death was due to brain swelling, which was attributed to him taking a painkiller.
His death sparked rumors that he may have been murdered by Chinese mobsters, poisoned by a lover, or the victim of a curse.
Investigators reviewing the evidence ruled that Bruce probably died of hyponatremia.
“In other words, we propose that the kidney’s inability to excrete excess water killed Bruce Lee,” experts wrote in the Clinical Kidney Journal.
WHAT SHOULD A BALANCED DIET LOOK LIKE?
Meals should be based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, ideally whole grains, according to the NHS
• Eat at least 5 servings of different fruits and vegetables every day. All fresh, frozen, dried and canned fruit and vegetables count
• Basic meals based on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates, preferably whole grains
• 30 grams of fiber per day: This is equivalent to eating all of the following: 5 servings of fruits and vegetables, 2 whole-wheat muesli biscuits, 2 thick slices of whole-wheat bread, and a large baked potato with skin
• Provide dairy or dairy alternatives (such as soy drinks) and choose lower-fat, lower-sugar options
• Eat some beans, legumes, fish, eggs, meat and other proteins (including 2 servings of fish per week, one of which is fatty)
• Choose unsaturated oils and spreads and consume in small quantities
• Drink 6-8 cups/glasses of water per day
• Adults should have less than 6 g of salt and 20 g of saturated fat for women or 30 g for men per day
Source: NHS Eatwell Guide