By: MJ Fegan, PT, DPT, GCS —

Water is one of the most important compounds on earth. It is also one of the most important compounds in the human body, thought to be second only to oxygen.

Our cells, organs, and tissues need water to function properly. Incredibly, our body is made up of about 60% water. In order for our bodies to work properly, it is important to keep hydrated.

So, how much to drink?

The National Academies of Sciences suggests that women drink approximately 11 cups (or 88 oz.) of water from all beverages and foods each day and that men get approximately 16 cups (or 128 oz.) daily. If it is hard for you to keep track of your water intake, your urine can also tell you whether you’re getting enough to drink. Dark yellow or orange colored urine usually indicates dehydration, while pale yellow or colorless urine indicates you are well hydrated.

So how can you stay hydrated? Here are a few tips:

  • Drink water with meals
  • Drink first thing in the AM
  • Eat hydrating foods like: grapes, oranges, beans, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, melon, yogurt, and jello
  • Avoid alcohol and drinks that contain caffeine
  • Carry a water bottle with you
  • Drink water with pills
  • Here are a few fresh ideas to liven up your drinking water:

  • Add lemon or lime
  • Add cucumber
  • Float some blueberries
  • Add pineapple slices
  • Splash of cranberry or orange juice
  • Make iced herbal tea, and add a splash
  • Carbonated water

    The summer heat is here so make sure to drink up everyone!