How many times were you told "save some for the fish" at the drinking fountain in grade school? A new article from the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health discusses the origin and the rational view behind the ‘eight glasses a day’ claim.
In 1945, the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences in the United States was the first to create a water consumption guideline. The recommendation has been repeated ever since; however, the important point to note is that none of these guidelines were set with a strong scientific backing.
After conducting a survey in 1995 to acquire a general consensus of normal fluid intake, the National Health and Medical Research Council in Australia found women and men both exceeded the recommended two liters. The interesting finding was that 30 to40percent of participants didn’t reach the requirement with just fluids.
The article concludes, “Water is important for health; however, the recommendation of eight glasses of pure water per day appears an overestimation of requirements. All fluids are important in meeting requirements and water should not be singled out.”