I went to see the movie Watermark a few weeks back after the TIFF hype about it. Truth be told I thought I’d be left with that guilty feeling for running my tap for too long… It didn’t disappoint with masterful images of water from around the world with soothing music to lull you yet keep you engaged.
I got to thinking of my experience with water through my life from seeing the Trevi Fountain in Rome, to taking off at the airport in a typhoon in Hong Kong, then glimpsing rice paddies from the sky while making a landing in Hanoi to watching surfers at sunset at Malibu Beach in California to the sight of Lake Como then to the flood in the summer to my bubbling rock in my yard – drip drip drip gurgle, splurt, gush, glug, glug, ahhhh water.
As I sit here at my desk I have my trusty glass of tap water by my side a fair distance from my computer. Being Italian I talk with my hands at times and have been known to knock things over as discussions ramp up. The age old question of “how many glasses of water shall I drink each day?” has raised it’s head yet again. Is it four, is it eight, how on earth do we calibrate?
I was delighted to read that an editorial was published in the British Medical Journal by Dr. Margaret McCartney who dissed that old adage of “8 glasses a day” blanket recommendation for the masses. Amen, I couldn’t agree more! Let’s think about it and get right down to basics. We drink fluids to keep us hydrated, right? So how on earth can one recommendation hold true for the entire population with little kids and adults alike who vary vastly in size. Should I be dictated to drink 8 glasses of water each day standing at 5’5″ while Michael Jordan is told to do the same? Add on to that the variability of activity levels when you require more fluids when you move more – Michael surely edges me out on that front. Add on to that the changing seasons when you obviously need more fluids when it’s hot outside and less in cooler climes. It is also often overlooked that “solid food” possesses a high percentage of water and when digested is broken down as such. Also consider that fluids containing caffeine or alcohol have a diuretic effect too. Am I making my point?
You might be wondering then how do I know when I’m appropriately hydrated? Getting down to biological basics using that age old “number 1″ and “number 2″ school kids use: when you pee regularly and it’s light yellow that’s a positive sign and if your stools are formed and soft that is too. Need I explain more?
Some experts suggest you drink to satisfy thirst, but for athletes waiting until you’re thirsty to drink is certainly too late. Also, children and seniors ought to be reminded to drink regularly especially when it’s warm out, so having that trusty water with them is a good idea. These days though with the pace of life many people go through their day mindlessly and lose a sense of those cues. So keep that glass of water at hand, but away from your keyboard of course….
Some people whine and complain yearning for fluids with good taste. I won’t rail on about sweet tasting beverages this time, but you T & T followers know where I stand on that as I have proclaimed you not “Sink with Your Drink”! Add some lemon or lime to punch up the flavour if you must. I am not a lover of those plastic water bottles either for the goodness of our planet Mother Earth. So get yourself a portable container to fill with tap water whether it’s filtered or not.
For those of you who get stuck on wanting a number guideline, take a breather and go with the flow. I’ll drink to that!