It is said to help us prevent kidney damage, lose weight and increase concentration levels.
But experts now warn that drinking eight glasses of water a day is not good for you after all – and could be harmful.
They say that scientific claims behind long-standing government guidelines are worse than ‘nonsense’.
The NHS – along with leading doctors and nutritionists – advises the public to drink about 1.2 litres (or two-and-a-half pints) of water per day.
However, a report describes the danger of dehydration as a ‘myth’ and says there is no evidence behind claims that water prevents multiple health problems.
Whenever you disregard your sense of thirst and strive to ingest several glasses of water a day just because you have been told that doing so is good for your health, you actually put unnecessary strain on your body in two major ways:
1. Ingesting more water than you need can increase your total blood volume. And since your blood volume exists within a closed system (your circulatory system), needlessly increasing your blood volume on a regular basis puts unnecessary burden on your heart and blood vessels.
2. Your kidneys must work overtime to filter excess water out of your circulatory system. Your kidneys are not the equivalent of a pair of plumbing pipes whereby the more water you flush through your kidneys, the cleaner they become; rather, the filtration system that exists in your kidneys is composed in part by a series of specialized capillary beds called glomeruli. Your glomeruli can get damaged by unnecessary wear and tear over time, and drowning your system with large amounts of water is one of many potential causes of said damage.