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Watered Down: Benefits of Eight Glasses a Day?

I drink lots of water daily and the new report on the health benefits of water being oversold will probably not sway me to stop sipping it hourly. The study found that there really are no health benefits to drinking the often recommended eight glasses of water a day; there is no evidence to the lack of benefits either. Interestingly enough, the researchers could not pin point the origin of the recommendation to drinking 64 ounces of water a day. It seems to be a benign urban health myth.

Here is a short list of things drinking eight glasses of water will not do for you:

  • It does not help remove toxins from the kidneys.
  • It doesn't help improve skin tone.
  • It doesn't ward of headaches.
  • It will no improve organ function.
  • Lastly, water doesn't necessarily lead to weight loss. Since water contains no calories, it is more of a weight loss strategy for keeping your mouth busy than for filling you up. Sometimes the body mistakes hunger and thirst cues, so drinking adequate water can help stave off this bodily confusion.

The take home message – drink when you are thirsty. Everyone's need for water differs. If you exercise and sweat you will need to replenish your lost fluids and if you live in a dry, hot climate you will need more water as well. Listen to your body!

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Join The Conversation
lovelystmo lovelystmo 6 years
I completely disagree. I have done research on this and the 8 glasses is to replace the 2L of water that we lose everyday through bodily fluids like sweat, urine, etc. I feel awesome when I have actually at least 12 glasses a day. My skin is clearer and my body is in balance for lack of a better term. I drink so much I actually crave water now. Its awesome. It has definitely helped my weight loss as I am retaining alot less water now. To each his own but I am going to keep drinking my 12-16 glasses of water a day.
popsplenda popsplenda 8 years
Drinking 8 glasses may not ward off headaches but being dehydrated can cause headaches. According to the May Clinic website: A few of the symptoms of dehydration are: * Muscle weakness * Headache * Dizziness or lightheadedness
beautiful-disaster beautiful-disaster 8 years
aaahhh that was great snowbunny. i agree. everyone should just do what feels good to them.. if you want 15 glasses of water a day.. go ahead. some might lose elecrtolytes doing that, others wont! if you only need one big glass and youre good... so be it.
backnskinnyjeans backnskinnyjeans 9 years
oh pleez! Most people are under hydrated and rely on sugary drinks for their liquid consumption. Humans need water, and 8 glasses a day isn't a lot. Studies like this are ridiculouso!
Spectra Spectra 9 years
I always feel better when I drink a lot of water. I think my skin really does look better when I get enough water and I know that it helps move things through my digestive tract better.
beepbeeplove beepbeeplove 9 years
Water is absolutely important even if it doesn't cure these random ailments. Aren't people 70% water or so? Our bodies use up about 3 litres or water every day so even if water doesn't cure headaches or whatever, it's needed to actually survive! :P
snowbunny11 snowbunny11 9 years
Actually, this isn't even a study. It's an examination of all the studies done on drinking water, so actually this isn't even a study refuting other studies, it's a report showing no studies exist that show that drinking a lot of water leads to better health. I guess that makes a bunch of these responses even funnier.
snowbunny11 snowbunny11 9 years
It doesn't matter how good this study may be, or how little evidence there is that drinking 8 glasses a day is beneficial, the readers on this site are going to insist it's good because they KNOW they feel better. Most likely, you all feel better when you drink a ton of water because you think it is healthier and detoxifying, power of suggestion and all. Obviously we all need to drink enough water to stay comfortably hydrated, I'm not anti-water or anything, but I just don't get some of the responses on here. "They say something new every day!" Okay, so who is "they" and what study is this study refuting? Other than being somewhat of a "well-known" diet tip, where is the study that says that 8 glasses a day of water is necessary? This site is getting kind of pointless because right now it's a basic rehashing of "common knowledge" diet and fitness tips, with a bunch of comments along the lines of, "I DO THAT EVERYDAY!!" I mean, take stretching for example. It's common knowledge you need to stretch to prevent an injury, but where are studies saying this? There are more studies saying that stretching is not beneficial at all? While it may improve flexibility, there is no reason why this is even a desirable trait unless you are a gymnast. In fact, it is hurtful to distance runners to be too flexible because that makes it harder to keep form! Oh well, at least some kudos to Fit for pointing out an unpopular study. Yes, there are studies for every point of view, but not all studies are created equal, so dismissing a study on the basis that it is a study without further examining the methodology used (even if your husband is a REAL scientist!!) is kind of stupid. What I should have said: "Omg this study is so dumb, like obviously drinking water is so good for you I no cuz i can just tell cuz I am so smart and like i know some scientists and someone who haz a degree in nutrition or somethinglike that at least a certificate i think!!!"
amers230 amers230 9 years
i disagree with this study too. drinking lots of water during the day definitely keeps me from getting headaches. i'm not sure about the others but yeah, i agree with kellyim, there's a study supporting everything imaginable. you have to do what works well for you and drinking 8 - 10 glasses of water a day is what works for me!!!
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 9 years
Amen ElissaM!! :highfive:
rpenner rpenner 9 years
Hmm interesting. I'll still drink my water. I'm with the other posters, I think it still has plenty of benefits!
MandyJoBo MandyJoBo 9 years
You don't have to be an MD to see the benefits of drinking water. When your urine is clear it means your kidneys aren't working as hard to filter it out. When your cells are nourished, it means they are healthier, and yes, look healthier too. When you are hydrated, you are healthier, period. Your body needs water to live obviously, but keeping it hydrated makes it thrive.
Kellyim Kellyim 9 years
My husband is a scientist and even when we were just dating I started to get more sceptical of studies. Basically, there's a study out there that can support pretty much any proposition. I feel better when I drink a lot of water. I feel like it flushes out my system and I know for a fact that ice cold water helps when I have a headache. If all of that's just a placebo effect, then so be it. At least I feel better.
Jessamae22 Jessamae22 9 years
who knows what to do anymore....one research says this, and another says that...ugh!!!
gigill gigill 9 years
Funny, I believe the article I read said there is a tiny amount of research that drinking 8 glasses of water a day may pose some benefits to keep headaches at bay. I also believe the article mentioned that it was some little document in 1945 that made the recommendation of 8 glasses of water per day. I suck at remembering details obviously! Personally, I don't drink 8 glasses of water a day and I feel great. Meh!
jrw1012 jrw1012 9 years
I totally disagree with this! I know that I feel so much better (not to mention my skin looks better and I feel skinnier) when I drink my 8 a day.
Francoisehardly Francoisehardly 9 years
I'm pretty sure my skin does actually feel oilier when I'm not drinking a lot of water and I do actually feel I do need lots of water, well around the amount people have said before that we need. I especially need it when it's warm out.
Ikandy Ikandy 9 years
I believe that also Kris...a healthy digestive system is extremely vital to good overall health.
gabiushka gabiushka 9 years
B..S..
KrisSugar KrisSugar 9 years
I disagree with it as well. Water makes me feel better, and does alleviate headaches due to dehydration. Also, if you are getting enough fiber, but not enough water, that can back things up in your intestines, making you sluggish and feel bad, not to mention grumpy. Water flushes things out and that inadvertently leads to small weight loss. At least for me! And I believe, but cannot confirm, that when your digestive system works well, everthing else works better.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
mmmm interesting study I'd say...
imLissy imLissy 9 years
I think the problem is people often don't drink enough water to stay hydrated. During the week at work, I'm sipping water all day, so I end up drinking usually 8-10 glasses. On weekends I usually drink around 4 because I'm so busy. I definitely feel more tired and blah on the weekends. I don't think water does much for my skin though. I always seem to break out the same amount no matter what I do.
misslilad misslilad 9 years
i agree with lightheaded. water just makes me feel better and i always get compliments on my skin. i am sure just being hydrated has something to do with it.
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