How Much Water Should a Pregnant Woman Drink?
We’ve all heard for many years now that you should aim to drink eight glasses (8-ounce) of water per day. While this is still a good ‘general’ guide; I recommend that you pose this question (How much water should I drink when pregnant?) to your Dietitian or doctor.
They will be able to help you identify exactly how much water you should drink based on your requirements, body size and weight.
When you are participating in a pregnancy exercise class; it is important you have a bottle of water close by so you can drink when required. This will help to prevent dehydration.
Is Water Important during Pregnancy?
Plain drinking water helps you to maintain a healthy body weight when pregnant. Try replacing a can of soda (soft drink) or another drink high in sugar with water.
When you don’t drink water, your body and its organs can’t function properly. Water is important for most body processes to function efficiently.
Benefits of drinking water include:
• Prevents dehydration.
• Lubricates your joints.
• Protects your spine.
• Helps to maintain a healthy pregnancy weight.
• Every system in your body needs water to function.
• Helps you eliminate waste through urine, sweat, and bowel movements.
• Regulates your body temperature.
• Keeps your skin looking healthy.
How Much Water Should I Drink when Pregnant?
Daily fluid intake recommendations vary by:
• Activity level
• Stage of Pregnancy
• Current health status (if sick, you may need to drink more water)
Institute of Medicine (IOM) currently recommends:
Women – 2.7 liters (19 and older)
How Much Water Should I Drink while Pregnant?
If you are pregnant, your recommendations change so please consult your doctor for guidelines for your individual needs. But general guidelines for pregnant women of all ages state they should aim to drink ten 8-ounce glasses (80 ounces) of water each day.
Not Drinking Enough Water Leads to Dehydration
Especially in hot conditions, drinking water can prevent dehydration. Dehydration is a condition that can cause your body to overheat, cause constipation, and even kidney stones.
When pregnant, you must avoid over-heating, so try to avoid being outside in hot temperatures.
Your body is always using fluids through actions like sweating and urinating so if you start to deplete water consumption, then Dehydration can occur. This results in your body losing more water or fluid than it takes in.
Dehydration may lead to:
• or unclear thinking
• mood changes
• kidney stones
Drinking Too Much Water during Pregnancy – Is it a Problem?
Drinking plenty of water each day will go a long way in helping your to improve your health. But can you drink too much? Yes, you can, but your first goal is to prevent dehydration.
As with anything, too much of anything can pose new problems so drinking excessive amounts is not what is recommended. Drinking too much water can result in Hyponatremia which is when your sodium levels decrease.
Symptoms of Hyponatremia include:
• nausea or vomiting
• muscle spasms
• muscle cramps
• muscle weakness
Did You Know?
Did you know that foods can make up around 20 percent of your total fluid requirements each day? Therefore what you eat is also important.
So, along with drinking water, you should try and eat lots of fruits and vegetables such as:
• green peppers
How Can I Increase How Much Water I Drink?
• Carry a water bottle with you wherever you go.
• Make it a part of your daily routine to drink water with each meal.
• Replace sugary drinks with water.
One last tip; make sure you buy a bottle that is BPA free as research has been shown that the chemicals that go into making these bottles can be toxic. Your health and that of your baby’s depends on you making the right decisions!