From the televisions, books and health magazines, they all say the same thing; drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water a day. To be precise, it’s the 8×8 rule. You should drink at least 8 glasses of water, with 8 ounce per glass.
This statement became an accepted statement and becomes a routine to health buffs. However, experts argue whether the statement is based on fact or just a myth.
There are many speculations on how the 8×8 water rule came into existence. There is one theory saying that the rule may have originated in 1945 during when a group of researchers released a report stating that an average person needs to drink 1 ml of water per calorie taken from the food they eat. Therefore, if a person consumes 2,000 calories a day, then he should take up to 2,000 ml of water as well. 2,000 ml of water or about 64 0z is roughly equals to eight 8-oz of glasses. However, the report also stated that much of the water could be taken from the foods consumed.
Another theory of the origin of the 8×8 rule is that of the work of Dr. Frederick Stare, a nutritionist. He was one of the authors of a book published in 1974 that recommended drinking six to eight glasses of water per day. It was also written in the book that fruits and vegetables are great sources of water.
In 2002, a research has been made to prove the scientific implication of the 8×8 rule. The study showed that there is no absolute scientific evidence that requires an average person to consume that much water in a day. However, not drinking enough water can cause mild dehydration, losing 1-2% of your body fluid. Fortunately we are reminded that we need water when we feel thirsty. Thirst is like the alarm when we are on the verge of dehydration.
Other beverages can such as milk, juices and alcoholic drinks can contribute to the body’s fluid as well. They just become diuretics when consumed in large quantities. An amount of water is also produced when your body metabolized. This is called metabolic water.
In sedentary people, fluid intake is around 70-80% and 20-30% food intake. In The US, they get 20% much lower proportion of fluid to food than in some European countries.
There is no precise or exact answer as to how many glasses of water should be taken by an average person. In US, women consume about 91 ounces and men about 125 ounces. A person’s need for fluid various greatly; just let your body guide you (and your thirst).