Drinking water is important, and many people do not drink the recommended 2L per day. Why, then, do we have to constantly remind ourselves to drink enough to meet those requirements?


In other words, why is the body’s “red flag” so different than that for hunger? Why is the body’s mechanism to remind us to eat more conspicuous?

In: Biology

We don’t need to constantly remind ourselves to drink enough. Most people will get the 2L of water a day without problems. Keep in mind that you don’t need to drink 2L a day, there is a lot of water if your food and thirst exist, it’s just that we usually get the water we need before we feel the thirst.

Because those are not requirements. They are recommendations for long-term health. Obviously we don’t require that much water because we can get by with less.

Unless you have some kind of serious disease, you will not die of dehydration because you don’t think about drinking water when you need to. Thirst will absolutely become overwhelming before you reach the point where you need to drink.

But our body, while very good at maintaining homeostasis and keeping us alive in the short-term, doesn’t have any knowledge of what is good for a human in the long-term. That is why a lot of our instincts are actually negative in the long-term. Most people will overeat, for instance, if given the chance and not educated as to why overeating is a bad thing.

I think that any recommendation put out to drink a certain amount is nonsense. You should drink enough so that you aren’t thirsty and that’s all you need to drink. Your body is a well honed mechanism set up over tens of thousands of years, and it knows what it needs.

So when you are thirsty, drink some water. When you aren’t thirsty, don’t. That’s my recommendation.

The mechanism to remind us that we’re hungry isn’t perfect.

It’s often thirst that we misinterpret as hunger.

Also that’s a recommendation not a requirement.

Drink when you’re thirsty, drink when you’re hungry (half the time you’re not hungry, just thirsty again).

There is no daily water recommended requirement, not a real one anyway. Before bottled water was available for sale, no one was pushing anyone to drink a certain amount of water. Once it became profitable to bottle and sell water, suddenly all these experts appeared with recommendations on how much water you need to drink – recommendations that were far in excess of the water any reasonable person drank on a daily basis. If you’re under 25, ask your parents if anybody ever recommended a certain amount of water to drink when they were kids. Their answer will almost certainly be “no.” Ignore any and all recommendations to drink water. If you’re thirsty, drink water. If you’re not thirsty, don’t worry about it. The only exception to this would be if you are working under a hot sun or high humidity and sweating profusely all day.Then it’s probably a good idea to ship water and more or less constantly throughout the day.

I would like to point out that many of the “requirements” about drinking are myths made up by sports drink companies that we have come to believe simply because we have heard them hundreds or thousands of times. One myth is that if you are thirsty it is too late you are already dehydrated. That is a lie. Your bodies ability to tell you when it needs water is just as accurate as it’s ability to tell you it needs food.

If you are thirsty drink water.
If you are hungry eat food.

Bonus clip included from “Adam ruins everything”