Quantified Diet: Measuring Water Intake

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quantified diet quantified nutrition self tracking water tracking We all know that proper hydration is important for your health. Without enough water, our body cannot function normally: our organism uses water to regulate temperature, carry nutrients to the cells, lubricate eyes and joints, remove toxic waste. The water also aids metabolism (your body burns more calories by warming up the water) and facilitates the breakdown of fat cells. Consuming water is known to help control appetite: when you feel hungry for a snack, try downing a glass of water first, it often reduces the cravings by filling up your stomach.

But how much water should you drink? Is often recommended amount of 8 glasses a day right for you? Not necessarily. The amount of water intake on a given day depends on many factors, including your age, health condition, activities level and diet on that day, and even climate and elevation. For instance, people with certain health conditions, like diabetes or symptoms, like fever, vomiting and diarrhea, are dehydrating faster. The physical exercises cause you to sweat, and so does hot and humid weather. The altitudes above 2,500 meters cause you to breathe more rapidly, thus losing more fluids. The caffeine and alcoholic beverages contain water, but they also increase fluid output, so you dehydrate faster. The fruits and vegetables and most of foods, on the other hand, contain water and will help you to replenish your body water reserves.

Considering that I exercise regularly and consume a lot of protein, my personal goal is to drink 3 liters (101 ounces) of water every day during the summer and spring, and 2.5 (85 ounces) in the fall. To make sure I meet these requirements, I track my water intake on a daily basis, without writing anything down or using any apps: I just use the following two non-high tech devices.

At home, I use Brita 42629 Slim Pitcher, which holds 40 ounces of water, and one full pitcher is usually enough for me to drink in the morning and evening. The filtered tap water tastes much better than straight from the faucet, is cleaner and healthier, and using the filter instead of buying the bottled water saves me a lot of money. The pitchers compact size makes it easier to store it in the fridge or on the shelf in my small kitchen.

When outside, whether biking or walking, or at work, I use Thermos Nissan Intak Hydration Water Bottle with Meter. It’s made of BPA free plastic so your water does not reek of chemicals, and for some reason it is easier to wash. I also hate the bottles with the “squirting” spouts, and this one has a wide-enough spout, with the push button that lets you quickly open the lid. The lid seals the bottle tight, so it never leaks. But the most important feature of this bottle is the metering ring at the bottom of the lid. It has 6 numbered marks that helps you track how many bottles have you drunk. Every time you refill the bottle, simply twist the ring to the next mark. I usually refill bottle to 20 ounces, so my goal is to get to 3 marks a day (60 ounces, in addition to 40 at home). Finally, the bottle has a sleek “futuristic” design, and a lot of people ask me about it when they see me carrying it around.

If you are into more high-tech stuff, you can check out the Sportline Hydracoach-Intelligent Water Bottle that has a built-in electronic water meter with display. It is a bit more expensive than Intak bottle (20 dollars, vs. 7.50), but looks sleeker and definitely provides more accurate estimates of how much fluids you drunk. Perhaps, next year I will upgrade to Hydracoach, but for now, I am perfectly content with my Intak.

Remember: drinknig water and staying hydrated should be one of your healthy habits, justl ike brushing your teeth. And tracking your daily water intake could help you to develop that habit faster.

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3 Responses to Quantified Diet: Measuring Water Intake

  1. Betsey W. says:

    I like this post, enjoyed this one thanks for putting up.

  2. Emmanuel Hoyt says:

    There is also a wonderful app for tracking water intake, it’s called Waterlogged, you should check it out. I personally like it.

  3. Kriss says:

    You could also use this iPhone app to track water intake (WaterMinder) waterminderapp.com – will remind you to drink water, and show you what is your current daily fill. Hope you like!

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