Can My Coffee Count as Water?

I’m a huge proponent of 8 glasses of water a day. There is no evidence to back up any long term benefits of drinking a lot of water. In fact, my grandmother drank one cup of coffee and one glass of V8 every day, no water, and she lived until she was 97. Still, more water makes me feel better. My skin feels better, I have more energy, my GI tract does what it is supposed to do, I have fewer headaches¬†and it makes me eat less.

Also Read: How to Make a Healthier Cup of Coffee

I don’t love plain water though, and I wish any liquid counted. Maybe they do? It is a good question. Years ago, as a student, I worked with this doctor who would tell his patients who wished to lose weight, to just drink tons of non-caloric beverages, so Diet Coke, Diet Snapple, coffee with artificial sweetener, etc. all were ok. Recent evidence is showing that consuming artificial sweeteners actually makes it harder to lose weight, so they’re out.

What about your daily doses of caffeine? We always preached that anything with caffeine would offset your hydration attempts, however, newer evidence shows coffee and tea can be counted in your daily dose of fluid. They do have a short acting diuretic effect, but not enough to counteract the hydration they also provide.

That being said, SLOW YOUR ROLE! I know what you are thinking. I’ll just load up on caffeine all day. Too much caffeine is bad for other reasons, and water is still best. But, if you just can’t find time for eight glasses of water a day, shoot for six and count your coffee or tea as two more. That should be good news for all you Starbuck’s addicts. The bad news is added sugar is still really bad for you, and we should all be trying best we can to avoid sugar and sugar substitutes. It won’t be easy as our culture and our taste buds are conspiring against us, but we’d be so much healthier if we increased our water and decreased our sugar. Caffeine gets a hall pass today!

 


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Author: Karen Latimer

Karen is a Family Physician, founder and president of Tips From Town. She loves combining all she learned as a doctor with all she continues to learn as a mom of five to bring you interesting, useful and fun information on the Family Pages.

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