You might be drinking water wrong

With the temperature nearing 100 degrees, a fans cools himself down by drinking water during a game between the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium on July 29, 2021 in Kansas City, Missouri.
KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - JULY 29: With the temperature nearing 100 degrees, a fans cools himself down by drinking water during a game between the Chicago White Sox and Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium on July 29, 2021 in Kansas City, Missouri. Photo credit Ed Zurga/Getty Images
By , Audacy

When you Google the question, "How much water should I drink a day?" there are tons of different answers with tips and tricks to stay fully hydrated.

The Mayo Clinic says adult men should drink 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of water and adult women should drink 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) per day.

Some experts recommend the "8x8 rule" -- drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. Although, that rule may not be the best for your body. With all of the different suggestions on how to properly drink water, Eat This, Not That! listed different ways people are drinking water wrong and how they can fix their habits.

Right away, they say that most people are in fact, drinking too much water. Even though it sounds crazy, drinking too much water can lead to a handful of potential health problems, including heart problems, bladder lesions, and even hyponatremia or "water intoxication."

"The vast majority of healthy people adequately meet their daily hydration needs by letting thirst be their guide," according to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.

It adds up that many people are drinking too much water because they aren't counting the water content of food. Fruits and vegetables are a major part of a healthy diet, although most are nearly all water. "A cucumber, for example, is 96.7% water. Lettuce, celery, tomatoes, watermelon, grapefruit, and green peppers are more than 90% water," Eat This, Not That! said.

Coffee is one of the most popular drinks in the world, as plenty of people start their day with some type of coffee. However, some say that drinking coffee can cause dehydration and can even cause excessive urination. Susan Yeargin, Ph.D., associate professor of athletic training at the University of South Carolina, explained coffee's diuretic qualities and how excessive urination from coffee isn't necessarily true.

"Research shows that caffeine doses between 250 and 300 milligrams—about two cups of coffee—will minimally increase urine output for about three hours after consuming it," Yeargin said.

Leaving a glass of water on your nightstand is common practice, but drinking too much water before bed won't help if you're trying to lose weight.

"If you drink too much right before bed, you may find yourself waking up multiple times in the middle of the night to urinate," Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, said. Instead, "start to taper off your fluid intake about three hours before bedtime."

So, the next logical question is when should you start drinking water then? Dietitian Lisa Jubilee, MS, CDN said that one of the best tricks to jumpstarting your metabolism is having 20-32 ounces (2-3 cups) soon after waking up in the morning. She added that drinking water in the morning before eating or drinking anything else has its benefits.

"My clients who have implemented this report less bloating, more energy, and a smaller appetite," Jubilee said.

If you've been drinking more water with the goal of losing weight in mind, then you better be adding a few lemon slices to your glass. The World Health Organization says that lemon peels have the antioxidant D-limonene in it which helps your liver get rid of toxins in the body. The vitamin C from the lemon juice can also help decrease cortisol levels in your body. Cortisol is the main stress hormone in the body that controls storing fat.

Another thing you can blend your water with is green tea. The antioxidants in a green tea bag can help your metabolism and speed up your liver's ability to burn fat.

There's a belief that ice-cold water can also help your metabolism, but there isn't much evidence that the temperature of the water you drink really makes a difference. People also often decide to eat instead when their bodies are actually telling them to hydrate, as the journal Physiology & Behavior says people respond to thirst by eating nearly 60% of the time.

Drinking a glass of water in between alcoholic beverages is a tip that's been around for a while, but not many people actually follow it. Therefore, after a couple of beers the human body will become to get dehydrated and cause you to feel bloated. Abbey Sharp, RD, of Abbey's Kitchen, suggests how people should mix in a water when drinking alcohol.

Make sure you have at least one or two glasses of water for each drink—and that you never drink on an empty stomach," Sharp said.

Vitamin Water may sound and look like a healthy alternative to a traditional glass of water, but actually includes about 26 grams of sugar per bottle. Other products like Mio and Crystal Light aren't great for you either. Yes, they are low calorie alternatives to soda, but still contain tons of artificial colors and sweeteners that can take away from hydrating the body.

The last tip given to help people drink water more properly is to stop using plastic bottles and switch to a refillable bottle. Plastic bottles often contain Bisphenol A (BPA), which the Food and Drug Administration says is safe in low levels, but can still cause increased blood pressure and other health effects.

Drinking water and staying hydrated are crucial to a healthy lifestyle, and people need to pay attention to what their bodies are telling them. If your urine doesn't appear a healthy color, then you need to hydrate more. If you're stating to feel tired throughout the day, don't reach for an energy drink, have a glass of water. There are tons of other tips out there to stay hydrated and drink water the right way.

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Featured Image Photo Credit: Ed Zurga/Getty Images