If you’re currently dealing with bladder leaks, it might be tempting to think, “Well…if I limit how much liquid I drink, it’ll help reduce bladder leaks!” The less you imbibe, the less there is to leak out. Seems logical, right?
Well…sort of. But not exactly.
Unfortunately, skipping your daily dose of H2O isn’t a great idea. Decreasing the amount of liquid you drink can lead to UTI’s, kidney stones, migraines, and a host of other issues that will have you up late on WebMD. Up to 60% of an adult body is water, and water helps with everything from digesting food to lubricating joints to acting as a shock absorber for your brain. All pretty important stuff! Plus, cutting down on liquids doesn’t guarantee the incontinence will stop either.
But, to be 100% honest with you, drinking too much water can increase bladder leaks and hurt kidney function.
So how much liquid, especially water, should you drink a day?
Call The Myth Busters
You’ve probably heard that you should drink 8 glasses of water a day, but this actually isn’t true! According to Kaiser, there’s no benefit to drinking exactly 8 glasses a day.
This fact is quoted all over the internet and in real life, but the amount of water you need actually depends on things like exercise (how much do you sweat?), the climate you live in, and your lean body mass.
Non-pregnant people, should make an effort to drink around 3 cups of water a day. The rest of what you need comes from the food you eat. If you feel thirsty, it’s totally fine to drink water!
If you’re pregnant, on the other hand, you’ll need approximately 10 cups (2.3 liters) of fluid per day, but that doesn’t mean you need to stock up on water bottles! You also get water from the foods you eat, so make it a point to pay attention to how you’re feeling and drink water as necessary.
The Easiest Way To Check If You’re Hydrated
Real talk: an easy way to check your hydration is to monitor the color of your urine. If you’re urine is a light yellow, you’re likely well hydrated. Dark yellow urine or urine with an orange tinge is a good sign that you’re dehydrated.
Types of Drinks And Foods To Watch Out For
While staying hydrated is extremely important for your overall health, there are beverages that can increase bladder activity and bladder leaks. Here are a few to watch out for if you want to stay hydrated while minimizing leaks:
- Caffeine: Yes, your beloved Starbucks can cause bladder leaks. Caffeine is actually a “diuretic,” causing an increase in the need to use the bathroom.
- Alcohol: Have you ever been to a wine or beer tasting, and needed the little girls room right after? It’s because alcohol is both a diuretic, and it can also irritate your bladder. Limit your alcohol intake, and be sure that there’s a bathroom nearby while drinking.
- Fruit Juices: Acids from lemonade or orange juice can irritate your bladder and cause leaking. While cranberry juice can treat UTIs, its acidic content can irritate your bladder.
- Carbonated Beverages: Fizzy drinks like Coca Cola or Pepsi have both caffeine and carbonation, neither of which your bladder will appreciate. The artificial flavors and colors can also irritate your bladder.
All Things In Moderation (Even Moderation)
Declaring that you’ll “Never have (beverage type) again!” is tempting, but doesn’t work! It’s just not realistic. Instead, be mindful of what you’re drinking.
To recap, you don’t need to drink 8 cups of fluid a day, and you don’t have to drink only water. But, you may want to consume acidic, alcoholic, caffeinated, and carbonated beverages in moderation.
Have you found a sweet spot for how much to drink in a day? Tell us about it in the comments! And then grab your free trial of bladder leak products delivered to your door from Lily Bird.