Fact or fiction: Water myths

Published May 8, 2014

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Everybody’s heard the “eight glasses of water a day” rule, but is that really how much our body needs? Does it apply to everyone? The truth is, the amount of water we need differs slightly from person to person and day to day. It depends on age, level of physical activity, climate and a number of other factors.

However, a good amount of H2O is vital to the body’s functioning. We’re all made up of anywhere between 55 to 75 per cent water after all, and as the body cannot store this, it must have fresh supplies regularly.

A basic guide for ensuring you meet your quota is below:

Infants from the age of 0 to 6 months drink 0.7 litres 7 to 12 months drink 0.9 litres, and children 1 to 3 years old drink 1 litre.1 From the age of 9, boys have a slightly higher water requirement than girls, which continues into adulthood. A woman needs approximately 2.1 litres of water a day, while a man is recommended to consume 2.6 litres.1

The actual requirement will increase if you add in exercise, a hot climate or a range of other factors, including pregnancy.

In Australia, it’s particularly important to keep an eye on children and the elderly during hot periods, to ensure they are not suffering from dehydration. Symptoms include a dry or sticky mouth, headache, weakness and/or fatigue.

A good way to stay hydrated is to carry a water bottle and sip on it regularly even though it can turn into “another thing to carry”. The health benefits are immense and getting the right amount of this daily “must-have”will do wonders for your well-being.

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