When it comes to staying hydrated, you’re probably familiar with the age-old eight glasses a day rule. However, new research is showing this isn’t enough fluids to keep our bodies thriving. To find out how much water you should really be drinking, take your weight and divide it by two. That’s how many ounces of fluid most doctors recommend you drink every day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, aim to drink 75 ounces (or a little more than nine cups) of water each day.
Staying hydrated is important for everyone (our bodies are roughly 60 percent water, after all), but it’s especially necessary when you have diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association, extra glucose in your blood can pull water away from your body’s tissues, preventing them from operating at peak performance. To help fuel your body with the fluids it needs, here are six easy and delicious ways to drink more water throughout the day. You’ll be guzzling your nine cups in no time!
1. Flavor it
While refreshing, the taste of plain old water can get boring quickly. You can jazz up your glass by infusing it with fruit, vegetables, or herbs. Begin by filling up a pitcher with cold water. Then, add your sliced produce. Fresh strawberries, lemon wedges, cucumber, and mint all make deliciously thirst-quenching mix-ins. If you feel like kicking things up a notch, try one of these extra flavorful combinations.
2. Brew tea
With a base of 100 percent water, you can’t go wrong by starting your day with a warm–or iced–cuppa. Green, chai, and English Breakfast are popular teas full of cancer-fighting antioxidants and bold flavors to boot. If caffeine isn’t your thing, try an herbal brew instead. From calming camomile to sweet cinnamon spice, there’s a flavor to satisfy anyone’s palate. Make sure you steer clear of sugary, high-calorie add-ins, such as cream and honey.
3. Set goals throughout the day
Once you know how many glasses of water you should be drinking, it’s easy to space them out throughout your day. Try setting an attainable goal, such as drinking one glass before lunch, one with lunch, and two more throughout your work day. You can write it down to remind yourself or measure your goals out on your favorite water bottle.
4. Pack a water-based snack
That’s right–your afternoon snack can be just as hydrating as a glass of water. At 92 percent water volume, watermelon and strawberries are two of the most fluid-dense fruits you can find. Grapefruit, cantaloupe, and peaches also make the list. For vegetables, try snacking on fresh-cut tomato, cucumber, or celery.
5. Replace one beverage a day with water
Do you really need a mid-afternoon soda? What about that glass of fruit juice in the morning? By replacing just one beverage with water every day, you’ll not only cut back on calories, carbs, and sugar, but studies show you’ll also feel more refreshed and energized.
6. Add water to your established routines
If you always brush your teeth right after breakfast, try drinking a glass of water around that same time. You can also sneak a few sips during your commute home or while you’re making dinner. By adding a glass of water to your regular routine, you may be more likely to remember it.