Water intake...and my apparent 'lack' of it

I’m sure this has been discussed, but the search is all jacked up and I’m tired of bickering with the camels in my office that carry around gigantic plastic barrels of water every day, sucking at it like neon colored teat and scoffing at my coffee and diet coke.

What’s the difference if I get my water from coffee or tea or coke or plain, gross, warm water? (because we all know it doesn’t stay cold for more than one second)

The first ingredient in coffee is: Water. Tea is…HOT WATER with some flavor thrown in. I’m looking at my Diet Pepsi and ingredient one is: Water.

So yes, I’m drinking water all the time, it’s just not plain. And yet people still say “you’re dehydrated…this is why your diet stalls…this is why you have headaches…this is why there’s unrest in the Middle East…YOU NEED TO DRINK MORE WATER!”

I drink three venti coffees a day…and that seems like a TON of liquid to me. What’s the diff?

In a general sense, you’re right. Water is water, and flavorings or other additions are irrelevant. So if you drinking, say, orange juice in sufficient quantities, you’d be fine.

Difference is that coffee, tea and colas have caffeine. Caffeine is a diuretic.

There’s a huge difference between caffinated drinks such as coffee and diet coke and non-caffinated beverages like plain old water. Water is good for you because it contains none of the diuretics that diet coke and coffee contain. Despite the fact that both contain primarily water, they also contain diuretics, which cause the body to expel water. Water also improves energy and concentration, can lessen the occurence of migraines and also helps keep your skin clear. Another reason to drink water rather than caffinated beverages is that caffeine can prevent your body from absorbing some vitamins and minerals.

Here are a few cites:

Are you drinking enough water?

Drink Up: the Importance of Drinking Water

The Importance of Water to Human Health

And if I told you that I don’t drink caffienated beverages, where would we stand? Admittedly, my coffee is caffienated, but my soda and green tea are not.

OMG we share something in common. lol.

I was told that not only caffeine but sodium is the culprit in sodas and coffee regarding dehydration issues. I used to drink about 10 sodas (diet, caffeine free) a day and they each had 40 mgs of sodium…that’s 400 mgs of sodium each day in just drinks, not to mention whatever sodium-laden food I was injesting. First thing I noticed after giving up soda - - I didn’t feel so “full” all the time (and I thought it was just the carbonation, I didn’t even think about the sodium).

A consideration for you.

(Also, jar, I sent you an e-mail.)

:slight_smile: Yogini

Most decaffeinated beverages, like soda and tea, are decaffeinated chemically. The chemicals used to make decaffeinated soda and tea can be detrimental to your health. Also, chemical sweeteners in decaffeinated soda can increase your risk of a variety of cancers. Cite: The Water Cure: How Much & How Often. In fact, some doctors are now arguing that, because of the chemicals in diet sodas, they are worse for you than regular sugary sodas.

As far as caffeinated coffee, while it is not as good for you as water because it forces your kidneys to expel water, its a whole lot better for you than decaffeinated sodas, teas and coffee. Some studies have recently shown that regular coffee can actually reduce your risk of Type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancers, and the caffeine can result in better athletic performance and altertness. But that doesn’t make it a substitute for water. As far as I am aware, water has the best health benefits of all the drinks you’ve mentioned.

According to [url=http://quackwatch.org/search/webglimpse.cgi?ID=1&query=Batmanghelidj]Quackwatch[/ur], your “cite” is full of hot air and fertilizer.

Grrrrr. [url-http://quackwatch.org/search/webglimpse.cgi?ID=1&query=Batmanghelidj]Fixed link.

Back atcha. That last cite was completely de-bunked at Snopes. Maybe it’s just me and Jarbaby, but I think way too much is made of the water-drinking thing. I believe we all get way more water in foods and other drinks than we realize.

Directly from Snopes, “The “8-10 glasses of water per day” is a rule of thumb, not an absolute minimum, and not of all of our water intake need come in the form of drinking water.”

Also at this link, “Additionally, the idea that one must specifically drink water because the diuretic effects of caffeinated drinks such as coffee, tea, and soda actually produce a net loss of fluid appears to be erroneous.”

So there. Have a V8! Or a diet Coke. Or water. Literally… whatever floats your boat.

Touché. I had not realized that that had made it to Quack Watch.

I could be wrong about water being the best beverage around, and would welcome the opportunity to find out if I am; however, I’m fairly convinced still that water is best.

On a side note, all this talk of water makes me have to pee. I’ll be back…:slight_smile:

P.S. Sorry for the incorrect cites - like I remarked earlier, I had not realized that that had been reported as a crap cite. I’m sure I’ll hear about it a few more times in this thread, though. Lesson learned: check cites before posting.

Funny story:

Back when I was in the Army, summer training was of course very hot and you had to drink a lot of water. Those who did not invariably got heat stroke and were out of commission for a few days. So they set a rule; you had to drink eight canteens of water a day. I don’t think anyone enforced it but you were told, over and over, that you had to drink that much water at a minimum.

Anyway, we’re on exercise and I am on sentry. An officer with some minions comes by and goes into the whole hows-it-going-private routine. She asks if I am drinking enough water. “Of course, ma’am,” I say.

“Good,” she says, “Remember, you have to drink thirty-two GALLONS a day.”

I stare at her, amazed. “32 GALLONS, ma’am? But that’s like - uhh, a lot of canteens. I think it was actually…”

“No, it’s thirty-two gallons,” she insists.

“Ma’am, I dunno. That’s like three hundred pounds of water. You know, maybe LITRES, but even then…”

“32 gallons, Private!”

“Yes, ma’am. 32 gallons it is!!”

I don’t think I quite reached by quota that day.

The Real Fixed Link to quackwatch’s look at “Dr.” Batmanghelidj.

Some of Batmanghelidj’s (can I call him Batman?) claims are quite funny. To wit:

[ul][li]Water by itself generates hydroelectric energy.[/li]
[li]Caffeine in the same water stimulates the kidneys and causes more water to exit the body than is in the drink. This exhausts the brain cells’ reserves of energy.[/li]
[li]Caffeine can damage DNA and cause abnormal DNA by inhibiting the DNA-repair mechanism.[/li]
[li]It is clear that the human body has many distinct ways of showing its general or local water needs, including its production of many localized complications such as asthma and allergies. Other drastic signs of the body’s water needs are localized chronic pains such as heartburn, dyspepsia, rheumatoid joint pain, back pain, migraine headaches, leg pain when walking, colitis pain, and a most advanced sign, anginal pain. Complications such as hypertension, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, cholesterol blockage of the arteries (leading to heart attack and strokes), and diabetes may also be connected to dehydration. Ultimately, cancers, I believe, may also be a major health problem connected to persistent water shortage of the human body.[/ul] [/li]
If only Americans had an ample supply of drinking water piped into their homes, then there’d be no more illnesses, ever.


My method might be a tiny bit TMI… but I sort of monitor the color of my urine. If it’s any darker than a very, very pale clear yellow, then I drink some water.

Thanks, moriah. My coding Chi is weak today. :smiley:

Most people who consume caffienated beverages regularly manage to adapt to the caffiene’s diuretic effect. They can thereby retain more than enough fluid from the beverage to sustain life.

The sodium content in your average commercial beverage is insufficient for the purpose of dehydrating an individual. It is more important for those on sodium restricted diets for blood pressure or cardiac function reasons.

Water is probably best. But unsweetened teas and sugar-free soft drinks really don’t have any significant liabilities beyond expense and perhaps staining the teeth for the average individual. And they are certainly better than trying to get your fluid intake from either sugary sodas or juices. Waaaaay too many calories in those latter products to consume as your baseline hydrating “beverage of choice”.


Since you didn’t specifically mention decaffinated green tea, I want to point out that green tea is not naturally caffine free. You may already know this, and if so, I apologize. I am constantly amazed by the number of people who catagorize green tea as “herbal” and assume that it is naturally caffine free just because it’s not black tea.

<anecdotal evidence>
In the average 10hr work day I drink maybe two cups of coffee, four (small) cups of tea, and maybe a small carton of OJ. No water, unless I get thirsty, in which case I might have one small cup of water. (Incidentally, I hate the fact that my office has switched to refrigerated water coolers. I hate drinking ice-cold water - it has to sit on my desk for a while to warm up a bit.)

Probably about a litre and a half of fluid.

That’s it.

No doubt the water cultists will scream at me that I’m chronically dehydrated, but I get by fine on that, thanks. The body is a remarkable thing. If you’re thirsty, you need to drink. If you’re not, it just means more trips to the bathroom.
</anecdotal evidence>

Gee, Q.E.D, maybe you should drink more wa—

/Gettin’ my five bucks worth.

Oh no, it’s worth saying. I learned this fact the hard way after having a ‘relaxing’ cup of tea at 9:30 at night and ended up staying up watching bad cable until five in the morning. :stuck_out_tongue:

I know I drink too much Diet Coke (caffienated and NON caffienated), but I always tell myself, what’s worse? Smoking, Substance Abuse, or a Diet Coke junky? (Because I’ve done all three)