Staying hydrated is important for your overall health. Most people do drink all the water their body needs every day. As a general rule, you need about two liters, or about eight cups of water a day, unless you have been told differently by your doctor. If you are exercising or it is a very hot day you may need more. Try to pace your drinking throughout the day.
Sometimes we struggle to get our recommended eight cups of water every day. Many people do not like the taste of water or simply get tired of drinking water. One tip is to try making infused water. This is simply done by filling a pitcher with water and adding fruit, such as lemon, cucumber, berries, or even herbs, such as mint or basil. Leave that pitcher in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight, and you will have an infused water. See the recipe below for my favorite, which is strawberry and mint infused water. You can also consume herbal teas or decaf tea or coffee, which count towards your eight cups of water per day. This is another way to add lots of flavor and supply the water your body needs.
Keep in mind that there are some drinks that do not count towards your eight cups of water. Regular coffee, caffeinated tea, or drinks that contain alcohol are not considered part of your daily requirement. Caffeine and alcohol are considered diuretics.
Being well hydrated helps your whole body work properly. It keeps your eyes moist, helps your joints function, and can prevent dry mouth to keep your teeth healthier. Do your body good, and get your eight glasses of water in every day.
Louisiana Tech Dietetic Intern, Kim Spirek, contributed to this article.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture