How Much Water Do You Need To Drink As You Get Older
Water is life. While experts believe the human body, if it had to, could go without food for up to two months, going without water is another story. A person can go without water for only three days — that’s right; just three days. Granted contributing factors like age, gender, activity, height and weight, and location can impact this average of three days, but the fact remains that you can’t go very long without your body giving up and basically giving up on you. Or, to be more direct, literally dying of thirst.
The human body is made up of 55% to 60% of water. Water intake regulates temperature, lubricates joints, protects tissues that need to be fully hydrated, and aids in expelling waste from the body. Water is also amazing for the skin, hair, and can even prevent bad breath! There are no downsides when it comes to consuming water and lots of it.
But even though we tend to hear that eight ounces of water eight times a day is what we should be drinking, that’s not quite accurate. Our water intake and what’s best for us is based on several factors — including age.
How much water should you drink in your 40s
In general, if you’re a woman, the amount of water you should be drinking daily is 91 ounces (2.7 liters), while men should drink 125 ounces (3.7 liters) a day. But these are just averages that don’t take into account specifics of each person as an individual. For example, the amount of water you consume in your 30s isn’t going to cut it when it comes to the amount you should be drinking in your 40s — especially since your metabolism starts to slow down once 40 starts creeping up on you.
“Water is needed for every function in the body, so getting enough is important for keeping metabolism efficient,” registered dietitian and nutrition educator Rachel Begun tells The Healthy. “The general advice is to get eight glasses of water per day, but you may need more or less depending on physical activity, body composition, and climate.”
There isn’t a fixed amount of water you should be drinking in your 40s outside of the aforementioned gender-based recommendations. However, there are factors that can impact your life once you’ve surpassed your 30s that everyone should be aware of.
Why we need more water as we get older
When we age, our bodies need far more upkeep than they did when we were younger — both our body and brains change in ways we couldn’t have imagined.
An interesting reason why we need to consume more water as we age is because our thirst diminishes. Naturally, this can lead to dehydration, so that’s why it’s so important to get into the habit of drinking lots of water in your 40s, so by the time you’re in your 60s — even if you’re not thirsty — the habit has been instilled in you.
While the positive physical benefits of water are well known, another reason to make drinking water throughout the day a routine is its impacts on mental health and moods.
“Studies show that those who drink more water have healthier minds. Our cognitive abilities often slow down as we age, and even slight dehydration can impact our ability to think and reason more clearly,” Dr. Lina Velikova, MD, Ph.D. tells Ladders. “As we age, keeping a high level of morale is essential since it helps us deal with old age and all problems that might come with it. That said, we can see how drinking water is a no-brainer.”
What it comes down to is that water is an absolute must when it comes to keeping our body and mind working at top notch. It doesn’t matter if your 40s are 20 years away or two months away, getting into the habit of properly hydrating now will prevent you from having to make radical changes when 40 does come knocking.