Fluids are essential to us. Water fills the spaces in and between our cells as well playing a vital role in the digestion and absorption of all the food we eat. Fluids also help to keep our body temperature within safe limits.
We need to make sure that our bodies stay hydrated, especially in hot weather, when exercising or playing sport. The amount needed varies according to your age, size, the weather and how active you are. Fluid comes from all we drink as well as many everyday foods (for example, watermelon and lettuce have a high water content).
So how much should we be drinking to stay hydrated? Your body will tell you by feeling thirsty- even feeling slightly thirst is a sign to drink some water!
As a rough guide, adult women should aim for 2.3 L (8 cups) and men, 2.6 L (10 cups) of fluid each day and children 1 – 1.6 L (4-6 cups). This includes all drinks, including those listed below, and water. You will need more
The best test to check that you are adequately hydrated is that you go to the toilet regularly and by checking the colour of your urine (pee)
In older age, your thirst signals actually decrease even though your body still needs the water, therefore, it becomes even more so important to check that you are going to the toilet regularly and to check the colour of your pee.
Water Health Navigator NZ
Water Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and NZ
Last modified: January 28, 2022