We are drinking too much water (Issue 12, 2012)

Water bottle

Wattle bottleOur bodies need about two litres of fluids per day, not two litres of water specifically.

In an editorial in the June issue of Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, Spero Tsindos from La Trobe University, examined why we consume so much water.

Mr Tsindos believes that encouraging people to drink more water is driven by vested interests, rather than a need for better health.

'Thirty years ago you didn’t see a plastic water bottle anywhere, now they appear as fashion accessories.

'As tokens of instant gratification and symbolism, the very bottle itself is seen as cool and hip,' says Mr Tsindos.

He also discusses the role of water in our constant quest for weight loss.

'Drinking large amounts of water does not alone cause weight loss. A low-calorie diet is also required.

'Research has also revealed that water in food eaten has a greater benefit in weight reduction than avoiding foods altogether.

'We should be telling people that beverages like tea and coffee contribute to a person’s fluid needs and despite their caffeine content, do not lead to dehydration.

'We need to maintain fluid balance and should drink water, but also consider fluid in unprocessed fruits and vegetables and juices.'

The eight glasses a day notion may have stemmed from guidelines published in the US in 1945. The National Academy of Sciences recommended that about 2.5 litres of water should be consumed daily.