Health's unkillable urban legend: "You must drink 8 glasses of water/day"


You have gone native… :stuck_out_tongue:


Never could stand tea. Tastes foul, gives me headaches.


Yeah, that is what made me start paying attention to how much liquid I drink. Mostly coffee/tea for me though. Never ever want to deal with that pain again. The ER doc going ‘not big enough to break up, here have some vicodin it should let you sleep’ wasn’t the best part either. I think the antinausea drug was the most help.


I have a fitness app that I use for tracking calories and weight. It’s good for those things, but whoever designed it decided to also track water intake based on “8 is the magic number.” (They also maintain a website with a useless front-page feed of forum posts, which invariably tilt toward “Would you do the poster above you?”)

There was a health incentive here at work that was also pushing the 8-a-day idea.


One thing for me is when I drink as much water as they say unless I am doing some major work/sweating a lot I end up feeling bloated and uncomfortable, but I am fine with coffee and tea.


I had a friend completely talk down to me regarding this. He asked how many glasses of water I drank a day, and I made an estimate, then he proceeded to lecture me on how I needed more. He’s not a doctor, so I asked, “where exactly does this idea come from, and is there any scientific evidence for it?” He of course just took the “it’s common knowledge” line of reasoning, which is a total cop-out.

The idea that we need 8 glasses of water a day was news to me when I first heard it about ten years ago, meanwhile I had spent most of my life just drinking whenever I was thirsty, and being perfectly healthy all that time.


I had a friend who was completely into this. He wound up having to pee about 20 times a day. And then went on to have gastrointestinal issues. Probably unrelated!

On a bad day I cover the volume with alcohol alone. I will say, if you eat a low-carb diet you should plan on drinking more than you might be used to: carb-heavy foods tend to have a lot of water bound up in them, which they then release slowly into your system, while fats and proteins require water to be broken down. I wonder if that is what drove the classic dichotomy in fluid consumption between northern and southern Europeans.


Keyser Soze had some interesting things to say on this very topic - pity I can’t find the clip on Youtube.


That statement in the BB article about “pissing clear” indicating a risk of overhydration needs to either be clarified or removed, because I can’t find anything on the internet to support such a claim.

Basically: [citation needed]


Drinking too much water can kill you, at levels not much above 8 glasses per day:

The other health myth that make hyponatremia especially insidious is the one about salt being evil.


The key, of course, being the “during prolonged, heavy exercise” part of that equation.


Certainly seems to work that way for hours of sleep per night, when you add a technological society to the mix.


Wait. So now there’s no arbitrarily mandated hydration goal I’m supposed to attain, and instead I’m expected to rely solely on the built-in methods that my body has for alerting me to the need for more water?

I just can’t accept that. Surely there has to be an app or something that can be used to re-overcomplicate this.


Here you go:


That’s a good start. Do you have anything in the way of wearables that can remind me? Maybe a shock collar that can zap me until I’m good and moistened again?


You can probably link it to a Pebble, or other smartwatch. So at least your wrist is vibrating like crazy every time you’re supposed to drink.


I find that it’s easy to stay hydrated if I have water available within easy reach, so I keep a large (30oz) water glass on my desk at work. When I feel like it I take a sip, and usually go through at least two of those a day. That plus the large water glass on my nightstand means I get at least the 2.5L a day on work days.

On weekends I tend to get a bit dehydrated because I don’t have that big glass of water next to me all the time - I have to make a conscious effort to stay hydrated.


It is slightly invasive…
First, you need to decide where you want to stick this (I suggest either the glutes or thigh):

Then you need a place to mount the water reservoir, pump, battery and arduino control board.

I would think that you could mount it all inside a camel back backpack and then enjoy your optimally hydrated life.
Really, it’s the only way to ensure that your precious bodily fluids don’t get overly diluted.


The person who figures out a way to build this all into a stillsuit is going to make a million dollars.


Except the article starts with how an 80 year old woman began feeling the effects in the middle of the night, presumably whilst not busy doing prolonged, heavy exercise, and almost died the next morning. I wonder how many people develop mild, non-threatening versions hyponatremia but put it down to other factors because it’s just not something most people consider.