A Guide for Daily Water Consumption

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For years, there has been an ongoing debates regarding the amount of water our bodies should consume on a daily basis.  For an average person, it has only become more convoluted to identify the right amount of water to drink everyday in order to maintain a healthy regimen. ? There is no dispute on the vitality of water for human existence and survival and experts agree that the more water you drink, the better it is for you and yes, water is the healthiest nutrient you can consume, but how much is too much (if there is a too much constraint at all)? So let’s take a more detailed look at just how much water the average individual should consume each day.

Prevalence of the 8×8 Rule and Its Shortcomings

We all have heard the advice to drink eight glasses of water a day and it is good advice, especially if you are looking to lose weight.  If we delve into the details of this recommendation a bit more, a single glass of water should be eight ounces (around 230 millimeters), hence the term “8×8”. This suggestion roughly entails the consumption of around two liters of H20 every day.

Even though this recommendation is extensively boasted by drinking-water companies in their marketing and promotions, the truth of the matter is that there is no substantial evidence and research to validate this widespread advice.

In contrast, studies suggest that drinking this much water might not be healthy for the majority of the individuals. For instance, one of the major flaws with this claim is that it doesn’t account for the other ways to hydrate the body aside from directly drinking water from a glass or a bottle. We humans fulfill a significant amount of our daily water intake through foods and beverages.  

Water Intake Through Foods  

Like every hard organic item, the foods we eat also contain a proportion of water. Vegetables and fruits are particularly rich in H20, with some of them (strawberries, watermelons, etc) having more than 90 percent of their weight contributed to the presence of water.  

Even though every food item defers in its water content, all of our meal plans contain a considerable amount of water. As per the data furnished by The National Academies of Sciences (Health and Medicine Division), the average US citizen consumes around 20 percent of his/her daily healthy water need through chewable foods.

The “eight glasses of water a day” doesn’t take into consideration this one-fifth daily fulfillment of water consumption through meals.  

Water Consumption Through Beverages

The 8×8 formula is also flawed because our bodies get hydrated with various other liquids other than pure water. Even if alcoholic beverages are excluded, we get a lot of water in the form of juices, tea, coffee, carbonated drinks and milk. There is no truth to the belief that coffee induces dehydration in the body. Caffeine drinks certainly have other side effects on the human body, but dehydration is not one of them.

The Right Amount of Water Intake

It is quite clear that water should not be consumed through definite measured values because we continue to hydrate ourselves inadvertently through foods and other drinks throughout the day. Moreover, water needs of the body can be altered due to several factors:

  • Weather: Our body dehydrates profusely in hot and humid weather so we have to increase water intake in this type of environment.
  • Physical Activity: The intake of water varies with every individual depending on the levels of their physical activity.
  • Health Condition: Your health also dictates the amount of water you need to consume. There are some medical conditions (fevers, diarrhea, kidney stones and bladder infections) which require increased water intake.

Apart from these factors, age, weight and lifestyle also differentiate the need for water. Don’t look elsewhere for the ideal recommendation of your water needs. Your own body can guide you better in this regard instead of some arbitrary suggestion.  

In a healthy individual, the body naturally starts to feel thirsty as its hydration levels drop. So drink whenever you feel thirsty. Furthermore, the color of your urine can also tell you about your water needs. Urine of darker yellow color indicates that you are dehydrated.

Sweating is another sign to hydrate yourself, even if you are not feeling thirsty. The crux of this discussion is not to exhaust yourself in counting the number of glasses of water you are imbibing every day. Follow your body and drink whenever you feel like it. You would be successful in hydrating your body.

In conclusion, even with the additonal sources of water contained in foods, the 8×8 recommendation is still a good reference for the average individual, but consulting with a medical professional on the amount of water needed for your specific body requirement is always the best course of action to take!

Genomics and the Future of Health Care

Medical Technology
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Genomics is an emerging field of genetics that deals with analysis and sequencing of the individual’s’ genome. A genome contains the entire genetic coding in the form of DNA. Professionals in genomics perform genetic mapping to find out the complete DNA sequences and better understand the diseases.

The genomic information can help in providing improved clinical care. Better understanding of the disease through genetic mapping can also lead to improved health outcomes and therapeutic decision making capabilities.  

While genomics is a relatively new field to the public, innovations in the field had started to make waves  over two decades ago when scientists developed and improved genetic sequencing techniques. The human genome project was first started in 1990 with the aim of mapping all the genes (about 25,000) in a human genome.

Genomics: Today and Beyond

Today, the field of genomics has advanced to a great degree. Complete genomes of a number of deadly diseases including cancer have been sequenced. The genomic data can help in finding improved treatment of the different diseases including malignant tumor, lung cancer and influenza.

Access to Personalized Genomics

Today, anyone that wants to gain better understanding to one’s health can gain access to the personal genomic data. The cost of personalized genomics is affordable that is likely to fall in the future due to development of more advanced sequencing technologies such as the Whole genome sequencing (WGS).  

Recently, a company named Veritas has launched the My Genome project that allows individuals to sequence the entire genome for just $999. Access to the personal genome can pave way for more improved personalized health care. It will help in the treatment of diseases that are not treated using conventional drugs.

Advanced Genomic AI Algorithms

Data provided by genomics is nothing unless they are used for deep learning of the diseases. A number of new companies are pushing the boundaries with AI genomic technologies such as iCarbon X and Deep Genomics. These programs make use of complex AI coding for better knowledge of the human genetic sequence. While it may take some time for this type of analysis to become mainstream in clinical research, the fusion of AI and genomics provide great opportunities for breakthrough medical advancements.

Cloud Based Genome Sequencing Service

Advancements are also being made in cloud based genome sequencing technology that can help research firms located in different parts of the world collaborate in bioinformatic genomics. Some of the companies that are developing cloud genomic application based on software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform include Intel, Cloudera, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and IBM.  

Using the knowledge of a person’s genome to diagnose and treat health problems is a revolutionary medical practice that is making waves in the field. The breakthroughs in the field will continue to open up a large number of opportunities for treatment of untreatable diseases.  A tidal wave of genomic testing and sequencing information will continue to both answer questions about medical conditions, and raise new ones.