It pays to know this  life-saving information

Every day, one hears stories about individuals who are met with medical emergencies which could have been prevented altogether. This is a true story of someone who survived a near tragedy.

Kenneth’s near-fatal experience

Eighteen-year-old Kenneth used to enjoy drinking water since he was a child. While most parents struggle with their kids to hydrate regularly, there was no need to nag this boy to drink water.

However, little did his parents know that Kenneth was drinking beyond the recommended daily water requirement of eight to ten glasses. One day, after consuming eight liters of water in one sitting, Kenneth had six seizures in four hours. He was rushed to a hospital where he was intubated and placed in an induced coma for three days. He has since been extubated and in stable condition.

Doctors determined that his sodium levels dropped to a life-threatening low. Kenneth suffered from cerebral edema due to water intoxication which is a fatal condition that can cause brain damage, coma or even death.

Too much water

So, what happens if you drink too much water?

While the body needs water to survive, drinking too much and too fast can cause serious health emergencies.

The kidneys can remove 0.8 to 1.0 liters of water per hour, therefore too high an intake will disrupt the body’s electrolyte balance.

Drinking too much water is called overhydrating. This can happen during sports marathons and competitions or even during intense workout and training. There is also the possibility of Psychogenic Polydipsia, a mental condition of compulsive water drinking.

When sodium levels fall below 135 millimoles per liter it could lead to a health problem called hypothermia. Sodium maintains the balance of fluids in the body. When sodium levels drop because of excessive consumption, the fluids flood the cells thus causing swelling.

Symptoms of water intoxication:


• Breathing difficulties

• Muscle weakness

• High blood pressure

How much is enough?

Photograph courtesy of century year nosethroat
Drinking too much water is called overhydrating.

While there are no official guidelines on how much water one should consume daily, this will depend on several factors:

• Body weight

• Climate conditions

• Lifestyle

As a general rule:

Women — 2.7 liters/day

Men — 3.7 liters/day

Photograph courtesy of healthline gigapixel standard scale
Symptoms of water intoxication include high blood pressure, confusion and muscle weakness.

Children and teens:

4-8 years old — 5 cups daily

9-13 years old — 5-6 cups daily

14-18 years old — 6-8 cups daily

Most people follow the usual eight glasses/day healthy habit.

Let us not forget that water is life. Drinking the recommended dose (and not more) daily can ensure good health.

Affirmation: “I am a fortress of strength.”

Love and light!