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What Drove Us to Drink 8 Glasses of Water a Day?

Story at-a-glance -

  • Scientific evidence to support the recommendation to drink 8 8-ounce glasses of water a day is lacking
  • Some experts have suggested that the ongoing advice to drink 8 cups of water a day is “thoroughly debunked nonsense” being spread by bottled water companies in order to churn up more profit
  • If you drink too much water, the sodium levels in your blood may drop to dangerously low levels, causing hyponatremia -- a dangerous condition in which your cells swell with too much water
  • Many people are dehydrated, however, and could benefit from drinking more water, and especially from swapping sugar-sweetened beverages like soda with water
  • Your body will tell you when it's time to replenish your water supply, because once your body has lost between one to two percent of its total water, your thirst mechanism lets you know that it's time to drink some water; if you drink when you’re thirsty and your urine is a pale yellow or lighter in color, you’re probably staying well hydrated

By Dr. Mercola

You've seen it on the old Food Pyramid. You might have heard it from your doctor. And you've certainly heard it countless times in conjunction with just about any diet ever created: if you want to be healthy you need to drink 8 glasses of water daily.

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