According to the recommended standards, pregnant women should drink twelve glasses of water per day.
Factors to consider for your daily water intake.
There are three factors you need to consider before deciding on the amount of water to drink during pregnancy. The factors are:
Your body weight.
Your activity level.
Your body weight.
Your body weight is a determinant of how much water you need to drink each day. The body needs 2 ounces of water for each pound of weight. Since the body’s water needs are according to the body’s weight, pregnant women need more water than the average person because they add more pounds during pregnancy.
To know how much water you need to drink according to your weight, you will need to know how many pounds you weigh. There is a recommended water intake for every pound; if you know how much you weigh, you can easily determine the amount of water you need to drink during pregnancy.
According to Belly Bottle, these are the recommended water intake for each pound:
200 pounds needs 100 ounces.
190 pounds needs 98 ounces.
180 pounds needs 96 ounces.
170 pounds needs 94 ounces.
160 pounds needs 92 ounces.
150 pounds needs 90 ounces.
140 pounds needs 88 ounces.
130 pounds needs 86 ounces.
120 pounds needs 84 ounces.
110 pounds needs 82 ounces.
100 pounds needs 80 ounces.
This recommendation is not taking your temperature and activity level into consideration. It just gives you the recommended water intake whether you are continuously exposed to extreme weather, or you engage in exercises that make you sweat.
Your temperature depends on the weather and how long we spend outside. If the weather is hot outside but you are indoors, and you have a cooling agent such as the fan or air conditioner, you are not exposed to any temperature. A case whereby you have to go out and you find yourself walking under the summer heat, you will need to drink more water than those who are not under the sun. A hot temperature will make you sweat if you are directly under the sun. You will need to drink water in other to replace the lost fluid when you were sweating.
In this situation, you cannot drink the same twelve cups of water recommended for pregnant women. You will have to drink more to avoid dehydration.
Activities could be walking, yoga, stretching, or other safe exercises for pregnant women. Your body uses the stored water to keep you hydrated while engaging in exercises by making you sweat. This sweating is a signal of how many fluids you lost during the exercise. You will need to drink more water than other pregnant women to get back the fluids you had lost during exercising.
How to calculate your water intake
When you know how much you weigh, it is easy to calculate the amount of water you need during pregnancy. For every hour of exercise or physical activity, you are required to drink a glass of water which is 8 ounces. For every hour you spend under the extreme weather you need 8 ounces of water (a glass). For example, if you weigh 140 pounds and engage in an hour of physical activity and you were exposed to a 65-degree temperature, your water calculation is 88 ounces+ 8 ounces+ (temperature) 8 ounces (physical activity)= 106 ounces per day.
Pregnant women who need water more than others.
During pregnancy, it is not enough to drink twelve glasses of water if you are in the following category:
Active or pregnant sportswomen.
Exercising while you are pregnant will help you connect with your body and also your baby. You also birth babies who won’t develop diabetes or become overweight as they age. However, it is important to drink enough water before you begin your exercise session. You also need to drink water during and after each session to avoid dehydration and an increase in body temperature. You should also avoid standing too long while exercising as it limits blood flow to the uterus where your baby is located. Avoid lifting weights or doing a yoga pose for long. A part from drinking a 1-3 cups of water, eat salty snacks to replace sodium loss. Sodium is needed to balance your electrolytes.
Women who experience diarrhea or vomiting. If you are experiencing severe morning sickness or diarrhea during pregnancy, then you need to drink more water than other pregnant women to avoid dehydration.
Women exposed to extreme weather. Extreme weather either hot or cold weathers can lead to dehydration. Hot weather causes you to sweat while cold weather causes dry air which also leads to loss of moisture. Keep yourself hydrated to prevent losing excess moisture.
Dangers of dehydration. A part from low amniotic fluid and congenital disabilities, dehydration could lead to other serious complications in pregnant women such as:
Urinary and kidney infections. Kidney stones or worse still, kidney failure is one of the results of frequent dehydration during pregnancy. It occurs when you stay dehydrated for so long, or you make it a habit of not drinking enough water while you are pregnant.
Seizures Seizures during pregnancy occur when your electrolytes are not functioning properly. Sodium and potassium are electrolytes the body needs in order to send electric signals to all the cells. When these electrolytes are not supplied or balanced in the body, the signals become mixed up, and the result is muscle contractions and in some women, fainting.
A drop in blood volume Dehydration will also cause a drop in blood volume, and this drop can be life-threatening if not taken care of immediately. When you have a low blood volume, both your blood pressure and oxygen production are low which could be fatal.
When you exercise, the sweat that comes out needs to get replaced to avoid dehydration. If the fluids are not replaced, it could lead to heat injury which comes in the form of heat cramps, exercise collapse, heat exhaustion or heat strokes that can be life-threatening. During heat cramps, your muscle temperature might feel normal, but your muscles become hard and you’ll experience painful muscle contractions.
Exercise collapse means feeling lightheaded after your exercise session. It could also cause fainting after exercising. Heat exhaustion occurs when your body temperature is as high as 104F. When you do not hydrate immediately, it leads to heatstroke. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include fainting, sweating, headache, cold, sticky skin, nausea and vomiting. Heatstroke occurs when your body’s temperature is higher than 104F. Symptoms include blurred vision, fatigue, nausea and vomiting, confusion and headache, palpitations and so on. Conclusion
The amount of water you drink should be proportionate to your weight, activity level, and environment.