From Sustenance to Vitality: The Impact of Water on Health

Charmi Vyas
Published in
6 min readNov 8, 2023


Water is a fundamental element crucial for sustaining life and maintaining optimal health. Its positive impact on the body spans from basic physiological functions to long-term well-being. Understanding the benefits of adequate hydration is paramount for cultivating healthy lifestyles and promoting holistic wellness.

Benefits of Proper Hydration

Optimal Physical Performance
Cognitive Function
Temperature Regulation
Mood and Emotional Well-being
Weight Management
Prevention of Heat-Related Illnesses
Healthy Aging
Immune System Support

Digestive Health: Water plays a crucial role in digestion by aiding in the breakdown of food and the absorption of nutrients. Staying hydrated can help prevent constipation and promote regular bowel movements.

Skin Health: Adequate hydration helps keep the skin moisturized, preventing dryness and promoting a healthy complexion.

Detoxification: The body uses water to eliminate waste products and toxins through urine and sweat.

Joint Health: Proper hydration helps maintain the lubrication of joints.

Heart Health: Staying well-hydrated supports heart health by maintaining proper blood viscosity.

Kidney Function: Adequate water intake is crucial for kidney function. The kidneys filter waste and regulate fluid balance.

Daily Water Intake Requirements

* from breastmilk or formula

# from breastmilk, formula, food, plain water and other beverages

Please note that the values are approximate and can vary depending on individual differences and specific health conditions. It’s important to consult a healthcare professional for personalized recommendations.

Factors Indicating Increased Water Intake

Hot weather
Physical activity
High-fiber diet
High salt intake
Certain medications

Illness: Fever, vomiting, and diarrhoea can cause increased fluid loss. It’s important to drink more water when you’re sick to prevent dehydration.

Medical conditions: Some medical conditions, such as kidney stones or urinary tract infections, may require increased water intake as recommended by a healthcare professional.

Instances Requiring Reduced Water Intake

Kidney Issues: If you have kidney problems, your doctor may recommend limiting fluid intake to reduce the strain on your kidneys.

Heart Failure: People with congestive heart failure may need to restrict water intake to prevent fluid buildup in the body.

Oedema: If you have swelling in your legs, ankles, or other body parts (oedema), reducing water intake can help control fluid retention.

Certain Medications: Adjust intake based on prescription.

Dehydration: Paradoxically, if you are severely dehydrated, you may need to limit water intake initially to prevent overhydration, especially if you’re experiencing symptoms like electrolyte imbalances.

Cultivating Healthy Water Habits

Carry a Reusable Water Bottle
Monitor Your Intake
Choose Water as Your Primary Beverage
Educate Your Family
Prioritize Safe Drinking Water
Adapting to Water Intake Needs Based on Various Factors

Flavour with Natural Additions: If plain water doesn’t excite your taste buds, consider adding slices of lemon, lime, cucumber, or fresh herbs to infuse flavour without added calories or sugars.

Incorporate Hydrating Foods: Many fruits and vegetables have high water content and can contribute to your daily hydration. Include foods like watermelon, cucumber, and celery in your diet.

Consult with a Healthcare Professional: If you have specific health concerns or conditions that may affect your water intake, consult with a healthcare professional for personalized recommendations.

Negative Impacts of Inadequate Water Intake

Cognitive Impairment
Fatigue and Reduced Energy
Impaired Physical Performance
Urinary Tract Infections
Kidney Stones

Digestive Problems: Inadequate water intake can result in constipation and other digestive issues.

Long-Term Health Issues: Chronic poor hydration can contribute to the development of long-term health issues, such as kidney disease, hypertension, and an increased risk of certain chronic conditions.

Negative Impacts of Excessive Water Intake

Electrolyte Imbalance: Excessive water consumption can dilute the concentration of electrolytes in the body, such as sodium and potassium. This can disrupt the balance of electrolytes, leading to a condition known as hyponatremia. Symptoms of hyponatremia include nausea, headaches, confusion, and in severe cases, seizures and coma.

Kidney Strain: Consuming too much water can put excessive strain on the kidneys, potentially affecting their ability to regulate fluid balance. This strain may lead to decreased kidney function and an increased risk of developing kidney-related issues.

Oedema: Overhydration can cause fluid to accumulate in the body’s tissues, leading to swelling, particularly in the hands, feet, and ankles. This condition, known as oedema, can be uncomfortable and may indicate an underlying health issue.

Gastrointestinal Issues: Excessive water intake can lead to bloating, discomfort, and digestive issues such as nausea and vomiting. This can disrupt the normal functioning of the digestive system and lead to discomfort and dehydration due to the flushing out of essential nutrients.

Impaired Cognitive Function: Drinking too much water in a short period can lead to water intoxication, which can affect the brain’s function and cause symptoms such as confusion, disorientation, and in severe cases, convulsions and coma.

Cardiovascular Issues: Overhydration can lead to an increase in blood volume, putting extra pressure on the heart. This may result in an increased risk of cardiovascular issues, such as high blood pressure and heart failure.

Frequent Urination: Excessive water intake can lead to an increased need to urinate, which can disrupt daily activities and sleep patterns. This can also lead to the flushing out of essential minerals and electrolytes, further exacerbating the risk of electrolyte imbalance.

Negative Impacts of Drinking Poor-Quality Water

Waterborne Diseases: Contaminated water can carry harmful pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and parasites, leading to waterborne diseases like cholera, typhoid, hepatitis A, and gastrointestinal infections.

Gastrointestinal Issues: Consuming water contaminated with impurities, chemicals, or heavy metals can result in various gastrointestinal problems, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, and stomach cramps.

Chronic Health Conditions: Prolonged exposure to poor-quality water may lead to the development of chronic health conditions such as kidney damage, liver problems, and certain types of cancer.

Weakened Immune System: Drinking water containing pollutants can weaken the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to infections and illnesses.

Developmental Issues: In children, exposure to certain contaminants in water can hinder proper physical and cognitive development, leading to long-term health and developmental issues.

Reproductive Problems: Certain chemicals and pollutants present in poor-quality water can disrupt the endocrine system, potentially leading to reproductive problems and hormonal imbalances.

Skin Irritation: Water with high levels of chlorine or other chemicals can cause skin irritation, and dryness, and exacerbate existing skin conditions such as eczema and dermatitis.

Neurological Disorders: Some contaminants in water, such as lead, arsenic, and mercury, can have neurotoxic effects, leading to neurological disorders, cognitive impairments, and behavioural changes, especially in children.

Respiratory Issues: Poor-quality water used for purposes like bathing or humidifying indoor air can lead to respiratory problems when contaminants are released into the air through steam or aerosolized water droplets.

Agricultural and Environmental Impact: Poor-quality water can harm aquatic life and disrupt ecosystems, leading to environmental imbalances and potential damage to agriculture and wildlife.


Water’s essential role in fostering physical, mental, and emotional well-being is undeniable. Embracing the transformative power of water is not just about quenching thirst; it is about nurturing vitality, longevity, and the profound interconnectedness of life and well-being.

Medical Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be considered as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment for any person or animal. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this article. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or seek urgent medical attention immediately. The author of this article does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned. Reliance on any information provided in this article is solely at your own risk.



Charmi Vyas

Versatile writer crafting tales of health, nutrition, places, and festivals, weaving words to inspire and enlighten.