Monthly Archives: August 2011

Water, Too Much of a Good Thing?

Tim Walton

Tim Walton


       It’s still in the heat of summer, so you’d better heed the advice of making sure you drink 8 glasses of 8 ounces each of water, right?  Uuhm, not so fast. Where did this concept come from?  Actually from The Food and Nutrition Board of the National Research Council of 1945!!!   Oookkaayy.  And it was based on no actual research.  It recommended “1 Milliliter of water for every calorie of food,” which would come out to around 2 -2.5 quarts per day (64 – 80 ounces).  The problem is, is that the next sentence of the report is usually ignored, “MOST of this quantity is contained in prepared foods.” 

            Hhhmm.  Roasted turkey is 62% water, boiled chicken 71%, grapes 82%, an apple is 85%, green peppers 94%, strawberries come in at 90%, and a head of lettuce at 96%.  You can see that there is a lot of “hidden” water content in food.

            What about caffeinated drinks like coffee?  They dehydrate you, correct?  Actually, no.  A study published in The Journal of The American College of Nutrition (Grandjean 2000) used 18 healthy adult males to test this theory and proved that caffeine was not dehydrating in healthy people who were drinking normal amounts. 

            “You can never drink enough water!”  Well, actually, you can.  Water intoxication can occur if you drink excessive amounts of water.  The kidneys are unable to excrete enough water (as urine), which leads to dilution of blood sodium.  Mental confusion and death can result.

            “You are already dehydrated if you are thirsty!”  Nope.  Thirst begins when the concentration of blood has risen by less than 2%.  Actual dehydration begins when that concentration has risen by 5%.

             Common sense (as usual) should prevail.  Drink when you are thirsty.  Keep hydrated, but don’t over do it by forcing yourself to down a “magic” number of ounces based on misinterpreted guesswork from 1945.  Strenuous work or exercise in the heat will obviously have you consuming more than if you are parked behind a desk in an air conditioned office.  One of the current “Studies” that is not only touting the “8 X 8 myth”, but even more was found to be financed by, gasp, a bottled water company.  I wonder why?  The bottled water industry is HUGE.  Unfortunately, it’s also bogus for the most part.  The majority of them are nothing more than bottled tap water.  If you are complaining about the price of gas per gallon, figure up how much a gallon of bottled water will run you.  And you could get the same or better right from your own tap.

Enjoy The Little Things


You know how you wake up in the morning and immediately start thinking about everything you have to do?  Instead of thinking of all the things that may go right with your day you begin to think about what will most likely go wrong.  I like to think I am a very positive person, but it is easy to get caught in this trap.  I started thinking about the little things in life the other day when a certain instance put a smile on my face for the whole day. 

My son is 21 years old and home from college this summer.  When he was little I used to wake him up in the morning by sitting on the bed next to him, giving him a great big body hug and saying “time to get up, time to get up.”  He used to laugh and giggle when I did this and it started his day happy.  Well, needless to say I have not done that for some time since he has become a grown man and sets his alarm.  For some reason this past weekend he asked me to be sure he was up by a certain time.  I took this opportunity to try my “wake up process” once again.  I assumed I would get the “Mom really, what are you doing, stop it.”  Instead the sweetest smile came over his face and I knew he remembered and it made him happy.  What a small gesture, but it made me happy and have a great day. 

We so often forget the little joys in life and only focus on the hardships and negative.  I made a small list of some little things in my life that may seem insignificant but seem to make my day sunny and bright. 

  • My husband making my breakfast each morning because he knows I am always running late.
  • When my son says “Thanks For The Food Mom” after dinner.
  • When I start dancing in the kitchen and my husband laughs and says “Don’t hurt yourself.”
  • When I walk into work each day and see my son’s name on our front door;
    (Dan Lee)
  • Everyone at work always seems happy and they are smiling
  • Someone at the gym tells me I look great
  • I can button my pants and don’t have a muffin top
  • Singing in the car on my way to work
  • My mom still tells me to be careful

This brings me to a final quote I saw which sums things up nicely.

“Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things”  – Robert Brault