As Canadians we should take this day to recognize how lucky we are to live in a first world nation, and to have easy access to freshwater. For Canada's 30 million people (about 0.5% of the world's population), we have 7% of the world's renewable fresh water.
Our bodies need water to function optimally; different body tissues contain different amounts of water. For example, body fat contains approximately 10% water, the brain and muscles are about 75% water, and blood is 92% water. In general, men should have a total body water percentage between 50-65%, while women should range from 45-60%.
Water aids in digestion, helping to break down food in order for your body to absorb the nutrients. It also helps to flush waste products out of the body, diluting urine, and softening stool, preventing constipation.
For the average person, a daily water intake of 3.7 L for adult men and 2.7 L for adult women is sufficient. This intake can be from drinking water, as well as consuming water in the foods we eat. Should you partake in strenuous physical exercise, be pregnant, and/or be under heat stress you should increase your intake.
In addition, research has shown that when trying to lose weight by reducing your calorie consumption, you will have greater success if you consume 500mL of water before each or three daily meals.
While pops and fruit juices are tasty, they are just empty calories, containing little/no nutritional value. If you’re looking to lose weight, but not willing to commit to counting calories, simply start by replacing one caloric beverage a day with a glass of water, you will be surprised by the results!
By GDS Infographics - World Water Day, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=39639887
Royal College of Nursing: Total Body Water Percentage
Dennis EA, Dengo AL, Comber DL, Flack KD, Savla J, Davy KP, & Davy BM et al. Water consumption increases weight loss during a hypocaloric diet intervention in middle-aged and older adults. Obesity Journal 2010; 18(2): 300-307.
Sawka MN, Cheuvront SN, & Iii RC. Human water needs. Nutrition Reviews. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1753-4887.2005.tb00152.x S30-S39