Water is a key component of all life on Earth. The human body itself comprises about 80% of water so the importance of water cannot be stressed enough, it is essential to life.
Although it’s usually recommended that you drink 8 glasses of water a day, there is little to no scientific evidence to back this statement. In reality, there’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to water intake.
Water Intake Calculator for Athletes
you should drink ...... of water per day
Water Intake Calculator for Athletes
Drinking too little and drinking too much water can have negative long-lasting impacts on your health. For this purpose, a water intake calculator is a great tool to better your everyday life and mood, as well as to fortify and maintain your health. This water calculator takes into account multiple factors that would affect daily water intake but before that, let’s shed some light on the dangers of over and de-hydration.
Dangers of Drinking too Little Water
Water is imperative to the human body for it to function properly. Keeping skin healthy, maintaining the cycle of ingestion and egestion, lubricating our joints and eyes, and soo many more aspects of the human body rely on a steady and constant source of water. Drinking too little water can manifest many different symptoms but they all compromise the running of our main internal symptoms. Dehydration is the condition that manifests when the body loses more fluid than you can take in and its main cause is simply not drinking enough water. Some of the symptoms of dehydration are:
- Dry mouth, dry lips, dry skin
- Dark-colored, pungent urine
- Lack of tears when crying
Water also helps protect our spine and other tissues, acting like a cushioning agent. The thermoregulatory system of the body depends heavily on the water so another symptom of dehydration is shivering and feeling cold. The muscles retain a lot of the water content of the body so weakness and fatigue are also very common.
Though adults are in no imminent danger when suffering from dehydration, the elderly, young children and athletes could develop more severe dehydration. For instance, a baby might develop an abnormal soft spot on their head and be constantly sleepy. If left unchecked, dehydration can cause the following:
- Brain damage
- Kidney stones
- Mood changes
Most symptoms should be cured upon proper hydration but if they persist, booking a consultation with your GP or getting an IV drip may become necessary.
Dangers of Drinking too Much Water
It is a widely known fact that drinking too little water can cause adverse effects on the body, but what most people don’t know is that drinking too much water is just as, if not more, harmful. We mentioned above that all of the main systems of the body rely on sufficient water supply and that too little water can cause the equilibrium of the body to go out of balance, well, the same is true if there is an excess of water. Hyponatremia is the main condition associated with drinking too much water. It manifests when the body intakes soo much water that the kidneys cannot get rid of the excess, causing the sodium content in the blood to become diluted. Though uncommon, hyponatremia can be caused by simply drinking too much water and in that case, the condition is referred to as water intoxication hyponatremia. The main symptoms of hyponatremia are similar to dehydration and are as follows:
- Mood changes
Brain function can also be severely compromised if there is too much water in the body. The cells in the brain swell and can cause pressure on the skull, possibly causing symptoms like high blood pressure and low heart rate. The muscles will also be affected by muscle spasms, cramps, and weakness appearing as more symptoms of hyponatremia.
Similarly to dehydration, nourished healthy adults are unlikely to develop critical hyponatremia but with the elderly, young children, athletes, and patients suffering from pre-existing medical conditions, the condition requires immediate attention. If the condition worsens, it may lead to:
- Brain impairment
- Kidney problems
- Liver disease
- Congestive heart faiure
Hyponatremia can be cured by reducing water intake, taking diuretics, etc. In more severe cases, sodium would have to be replaced to maintain proper equilibrium in the body.
Why use a water intake calculator?
Now that you are equipped with the knowledge of the risks of over-hydration and de-hydration, the need for an accurate water intake controller becomes clear. Most of us don’t give any thought to how much water we drink in a day and those that do, have taken to using apps as reminders or personalized water bottles to meet the 8glasses a day goal. This could lead to a large portion of people drinking too much water. Or on the other hand, it might be a low amount for people. Either way, even the mild symptoms of over-hydration and de-hydration lead to mood swings, irritability, headaches, and damage to the body and its organs. To improve your quality of life and longevity, knowing your personalized daily water intake amount can be a significant step toward that goal.
How does a water intake calculator work?
Our water calculator uses a fact-based formula to best develop a water intake recommendation based on a few factors. These factors are:
- Activity Level
Let’s take a deeper dive into these factors and their individual influences on the water intake amount.
The first 3 factors are closely related to each other, with the main one being age. As the body ages, many changes come along with it like height and weight and through the many stages of someone’s life, a person would require different amounts of nutrients. The stages explored in our calculator are:
- 14-18 -Teenager
- 19-30 -Young Adult
- 31-50 – Adult
- 50+ – Elderly
Water intake amount usually caps out at young adulthood, being the prime of our lives and the period during which we are most physically active. From then on, the water intake recommendation slowly drops into the twilight years of one’s life because of a number of reasons with the main ones being slower cell regeneration, lower stamina, etc.
Height and Weight
In healthy-weighing individuals, height and weight can be considered the same. As the height increases during the earlier stages of life, the weight naturally rises alongside it as the biomass has to increase to accommodate for the larger skeletal structure. The more biomass, the more cells, tissues, and organs inside the body that all require water to operate. Taller individuals require more water and shorter individuals require less water. Even though our height doesn’t seem to change greatly beyond adulthood, weight certainly can.
Malnourished or over-weight people need quite varying amounts of water even if they are from the same age and height range. It is all again linked back to bio-mass. People with lower BMI values would require less water but people with higher BMI values would require more water.
As a rule of thumb, men tend to require more nutrients to remain healthy as compared to women and that includes water intake. This is because of a variety of reasons like greater bone density, greater stamina, more muscle mass, faster metabolism, etc. All of this is linked back to bio-mass as men tend to have more mass than women and are usually in charge of laborious tasks.
The season, and by extension, the weather actually play an important role in daily water intake. There is no static end-all-be-all value for water intake. It can change from day to day and from season to season. The seasons explored in our calculator are the 2 main seasons of winter and summer and the transitionary seasons in between:
- Normal (Autumn and Spring)
The cold winter seasons bring lower temperatures and dry air. There is much lower water loss from the body during winter due to the aforementioned reasons as people tend to sweat less during this season.
Summers can be hot and humid, the perfect recipe for sweating as the body releases liquids to cool itself down. On average, water intake and loss are 40% higher in summers than in winters.
Normal (Autumn and Spring)
The transitionary seasons of Autumn and Spring are quite similar with cool weather throughout these times of the year. Water intake isn’t higher than usual like in the summers or lower than usual like during the winters, but a more standard normal amount.
Possibly the single most important factor, activity level is how much physical activity you usually do on a daily basis. Going to the gym, doing daily jogs, doing manual labor, being an athlete, working in a setting that requires you to be on your feet, etc all translate to greater activity levels. Higher physical activity means the body will run out of nutrients and water faster. Thus daily water intake also rises. This fact is best seen among athletes like marathon runners who take frequent sips of water so their body doesn’t go into shock.
The Bottom Line
Without repeating previous statements, water is essential to life and an important part of everyone’s daily routine. Drinking enough water in a day is one of the best ways to improve your overall health. Finding a good personalized and reliable water intake recommendation is just a few clicks