Food Talk And Fabulous Finds - How much water is too much?

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01-20-2004, 10:58 AM
I've been looking around the internet to see how much you're supposed to be drinking, but it always says "but don't drink too much" How much is that? I drink about 3L a that too much?

01-23-2004, 02:54 PM
Well I read an news article a few months back. Scientists now say 8 glasses a water a day is not necessary. I read that 4-5 glasses is more accurate.

I also read about water intoxication where a person consumes large amounts of water and the blood plasma (liquid part of the blood) increases. When that happens the sodium (salt) content of the blood becomes diluted. And it can become very dangerous when you are loosing salt by sweating when you work out and have drank to much water. Consequently, the amount of salt available to the body tissues decreases over time to a point where the loss interferes with brain, heart, and muscle function.

So basically it's when the body takes in more water than it excretes and the normal bodily salt level is diluted. An adult that is in good condition health wise would have to drink more than 2 gallons a day to develop water intoxication according to BluePrint for Health.

Of course the best thing to do is speak to your primary care physician about situations like these.


01-24-2004, 06:37 AM
Not necessarily 2 gallons a day... a lot of it depends on how fast. 3 liters within an hour would potentially be dangerous as well.

01-27-2004, 10:54 AM
Thanks for the info.

I usually drink 3L without the entire day. So I'm guessing that's not too much/too little.



03-05-2004, 02:22 PM
I drink three litres a day as well, and I feel great. It takes me all day to do it, but my skin looks better, and I don't get as fatigued as I do when I don't drink water. Water is important when you are dieting. Just make sure you are taking a really good supplement to make up for any minerals you may be flushing out.

03-06-2004, 09:16 AM
Great news. They've finally concluded some of the first scientific studies on water consumption, and the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies has released its new requirements based on that research:

Date: Feb. 11, 2004


Report Sets Dietary Intake Levels for Water, Salt, and Potassium
To Maintain Health and Reduce Chronic Disease Risk

WASHINGTON -- The vast majority of healthy people adequately meet their daily hydration needs by letting thirst be their guide, says the newest report on nutrient recommendations from the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.

. . .

"We don't offer any rule of thumb based on how many glasses of water people should drink each day because our hydration needs can be met through a variety of sources in addition to drinking water," said Lawrence Appel, chair of the panel that wrote the report and professor of medicine, epidemiology, and international health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore. "While drinking water is a frequent choice for hydration, people also get water from juice, milk, coffee, tea, soda, fruits, vegetables, and other foods and beverages as well. Moreover, we concluded that on a daily basis, people get adequate amounts of water from normal drinking behavior -- consumption of beverages at meals and in other social situations -- and by letting their thirst guide them."

. . .

While concerns have been raised that caffeine has a diuretic effect, available evidence indicates that this effect may be transient, and there is no convincing evidence that caffeine leads to cumulative total body water deficits. Therefore, the panel concluded that when it comes to meeting daily hydration needs, caffeinated beverages can contribute as much as noncaffeinated options.

. . .

Dietary Reference Intakes for Water, Potassium, Sodium, Chloride, and Sulfate is available on the Internet at

. . .

Food and Nutrition Board

03-09-2004, 06:12 PM
This is obviously good, but I would keep drinking water, along with other beverages... 3 litres is a good amount, and I would keep that pure water, with things like diet soda along side that. Too much water is only dangerous if consumed too quickly, especially during exercise... It is not a concern anyone should have in their minds, unless running a race, or other strenous activities. If you are at the office, you will be fine drinking a number of litres, just not to quickly... If it is comfortable, it is okay... I like the fact that the report pointed out caffiene and other drinks are not bad for hydration. I like to enjoy a soda here and there, along with my water, and I like knowing it is comtributing to, not hindering, my bodies hydration levels.

03-10-2004, 07:32 AM
This is obviously good, but I would keep drinking water, along with other beverages...I don't see it as a problem, just now am glad to know that it is nothing more than a personal preference, with respect to health. So many folks have been turned off by 8 x 8, so now we can readily tell them, without concern, "No problem. Just drink when you're thirsty -- that's just fine."

3 litres is a good amount, and I would keep that pure water, with things like diet soda along side that.I keep my plain water intake down to pretty much nothing, especially now, since I don't like the taste of it. I do still stay away from caffeine, despite the conclusion of the studies, because I have other problems with caffeine. To each his/her own.

Too much water is only dangerous if consumed too quickly3 liters in an hour, to be specific.

03-11-2004, 03:51 PM
True... I tend to agree with you, but I just feel there is an importance in havng regular water in your diet... Even if there is no hard scientific evidence behind it, I feel it improves skin/hair/overall complexion... I feel less whole if I do not consume enough regular water... To each his own is correct LOL... As long as you get enough non-caffienated liquids along w/ caffienated ones, you should be okay... I wouldn't drink ONLY caffienate drinks...

03-16-2004, 09:12 AM
ok, i was always taught and read that your supose to drink 8 glasses of water a day at least. Now however from my experience i can tell you how much water is too much. I drink 1 gal of water a day. I was drinking 2 gal a water a day and i came to find out that was too much. How i found out was the hard way. I gained 10 pounds,my breasts swelled and nipples hurt, I honestly thought i was pregnant, but wasn't. So all i know is be careful when drinking water. I guess there is a thing such as too much water, lol.

03-16-2004, 11:55 AM
When I was (briefly) seeing a nutritionist, I told her that I was up to a gallon of water a day (I thought it was a GOOD thing) and her opinion was that was too much...something about electrolytes and nutrients starting to get depleted? She said the 8 X 8 was what I should aim for :shrug:

03-17-2004, 07:52 PM
Everything in moderation friends... That is the key... Pump too much of anything into your body and you are looking for trouble... Enjoy the water, or gatorade, or diet soda, or whatever, and it will be okay... If it is forced and uncomfortable, it is in excess...

03-23-2004, 06:06 PM
I acutally think its differs from person to person.
and for me, I try to drink more water but not a set gole in mind. I take to work a half gal jug of water and put it in the refrigerator here and just drink out of the jug through out the day. usually takes three days to drink it. but I also have a jug of water in the refrigerator at home and finninsh that off in 3 days. so I just drink it no rules. but I don't drink juice or diet soda.

03-24-2004, 03:44 PM
I know I'll regret this BUT the NAP information is not exercise and sport specific.

The statement that "there is no convincing evidence that caffeine leads to cumulative total body water deficits" means that drinking caffeine will not dehydrate you in and of itself, ie the caffeine does NOT suck good water out of you! So daily hydration needs are met by letting your thirst guide you.

BUT, if you do a lot of physical activity, or you start to increase your daily activity then your thirst may not keep up with your changing need. Such activity is over and above 'daily needs' in the normal population. That is really when the need to deliberately increase your water intake becomes necessary!

The brain has only one signal for hunger and thirst (and 'I want a cigarette' if you are a smoker). Many people interpret a signal for water as a request for food - the obvious choice if you have just completed a workout and have burnt a lot of calories. THAT is when the reminder to drink a little more is useful.

It helps to remember that one of the first applications for the 8x8 was for sedentary or obese individuals who were starting a new exercise regime! There is lots and lots of evidence that an extra glass of water is beneficial for brain, body, skin and weight maintainance at this time!

The NAP information as quoted is sensibly setting us staright about the daily needs of our bodies. SO many strange and wonderful claims are made about too much or too little water it is good that a nationally strong association is setting the record staright. But we need to remember not to throw the baby out with the bath water - there is a need to monitor you fluid intake if you are increasing your physical activity levels. That is FLUID - not water - and that includes salads, fruit, veggies, soups whatever.

I'd also say steer clear of carbonated drinks in ALL forms, they undeniably cause major skeletal problems in later life if over consumed (2+ bottlles or cans per day is too much).

Here in the UK 'Natural Spring Water' is legally defined and must come from the ground in a pure and potable state - without the word 'Natural' it could be anything. As Coke have just found out - oops and lots of millions of dollars down the drain of you get it wrong!

Ramble over!

04-30-2004, 02:36 PM
I feel silly, because I guess I'm still a little confused after reading this. I try to drink two 34 ounce bottles of water per day, for a total of 68 ounces. Is this sufficient for my weight or do I need more? I'm assuming since I weigh about 260, I would need a much higher amount of water than say, a person who weighs 130 pounds.

04-30-2004, 05:33 PM
Stacy: Are you thirsty?

05-05-2004, 01:07 PM
i have been reading the postings and reply about water. Right now i drink 3 64 oz glasses of water. i am getting bored sometimes and when i drink the water it is keeping me from eating to much. i do not do this every day but i do try to drink the water. some days it is 64 oz of water. i used to drink more pop . now that i am drinking the water , i am only drinking 2 cans of pop a day compared to 6 to 8 pops a day. some times i think i am over dueing the water. i seem to pee and pee. my kidneys are doing good . with the pop allways seem to have problems. sue

05-05-2004, 03:03 PM
Stacy, you aren't the only one who is confused. I have to give out lots of health, balanced nutrition and weight management info on a daily basis and I am always being met with new ways of asking about water intake.

At the moment there is a lot of apparently conflicting info out there about water intake. Some of this is because various magazines, TV programmes and diet gurus made a huge noise about water consumption and distorted the original message. Now the more scientific bods are trying to correct the situation - and it all gets very mixed up!!!

Try this as a guide: hold out yourl left hand, palm to the floor. Pinch the skin of the back of it, hold for a second and then let go. If the skin snaps back into place immediately then you are hydrated! If you see the skin settle back then you need more fluid. A lack of hydration means the skin immediately loses some of its elasticity, but regains it equally quickly if you regydrate.

If your current water intake means that your skin is always supple then relax, you are doing enough. Perhaps an extra glass a day for good luck! If you think you are a bit dehydrated then add a glass a day for a week then add another the following week and on until you think you are OK.

I had a little trouble with the amount you drink (we do pints and litres over here in the UK) but I worked out that you drink about 2 pints of water per day in bottled form. That would be fine for a none exercise day, assuming that you also drink tea or coffee, milk, juice or soups, or eat fruit, vegetables or other moist foods.

If you exercise then a rule of thumb is to drink a pint of water (34 ounces would be fine) in the hour before and another in the hour after. This will reduce the after exercise hunger pangs and will most certainly keep youwell hydrated and less likely to injure yourself, feel dizzy or any of the other post exercise dehydration symptoms.

Just don't gulp it all down at once!

I hope that helps.

05-06-2004, 07:18 AM
i drink almost 3 quarts of water a day. some times i get 8 glasses a day but i try to drink 3. anytime i think that i am hungry i will drink water to try to fill me up to be able to eat less. sue

05-06-2004, 07:40 AM
I'd never heard of that pinch the back of the hand trick. Interesting.

05-07-2004, 07:46 PM
Hi Brian,

I always thought it was my Grannies way of making me drink more milk, water, reconstituted juice or any other strange liquid she had bought at the Cash + Carry.

Imagine my amusement when my nutrition lecturer trotted it out in a post grad seminar many many years later. I just had to question her on it and she did look shocked, but confirmed that, as a guide rather than an absolute, it does give you a perfectly good idea of how hydrated you are.

The only obvious drawback is that as you get older your skin loses its suppleness and wrinkles and takes longer to settle back. However if you repeat it a couple of times you get used to your skin's natural 'speed' and can continue to use it - but I would assume that at some point it becomes a useless exercise!

But until my skin stops moving - or my hand has a perpetual pinch bruise - I will use it as a general guide, or I get the hang of drinking enough water without having to think about it!