It’s no surprise that drinking enough water is important. According to the Journal of Biological Chemistry, the lungs are made up of 84 percent water, 79 percent in the kidneys, and 73 percent in the heart and brain. Even “boneless” bones are 32 percent water.

Growing up, most of us were told to drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day, however, the source of this guideline is unclear and not actually supported by scientific research.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommends that men drink 3.7 liters and women 2.7 liters of water a day. However, the IOM noted that all of your fluid intake should come from “all beverages and food,” not plain water. And everyone’s exact hydration requirements vary. Factors such as exercise, temperature, illness, and pregnancy can all affect fluid needs.

If you’re not sure why you’ve gained a few pounds, it may be because you’re not drinking enough water. “Drinking water increases feelings of fullness. This may be why researchers found a link between obesity and insufficient hydration,” says dietitian Megan Wong.

Dr. A study led by Tammy Chang and published in the Annals of Family Medicine in 2016 examined the health habits of more than 18,000 adults and found that those who don’t drink enough water are more likely to have high body mass.

According to the Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation, 37 percent of individuals are mistakenly thirsty for hunger. Registered dietitian Trista Best explained that this confusion in signals can lead to “overeating late at night, overeating at mealtimes, and chronic snacking.” The next time you think you’re hungry, Wong immediately suggested having a glass of water before snacking.

Not drinking enough water can have major consequences for your cardiovascular health. According to the Heart Foundation, “When you don’t drink enough water, blood volume, or the amount of blood circulating through the body, decreases. By increasing your heart rate and blood pressure, it tries to compensate with a faster heartbeat. Your blood also holds more sodium when you’re dehydrated, making your blood thicker and harder to circulate throughout your body. .

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