Back To Blog Page

Does Drinking Water Boost Your Immune System?

It is more important than ever to ensure your immune system is operating at its best, but what’s the best way to do that? Experts recommend that you maintain healthy habits like not smoking, eating nutritious food, and exercising regularly. But does water help your immune system?

It’s a great question that has a complex answer. Let’s take a closer look at the relationship between hydration and immune system function. In doing so, we’ll also explore some of the other really important reasons that you should stay well-hydrated for your overall health.

Can Drinking Water Boost Your Immune System?

The short answer is no, drinking water can’t boost your immune system as far as we know. Though drinking water can’t “boost” your immune system, it does play an important role in supporting our existing immune system function. Our immune system is a complex network of interwoven parts, each functioning together to protect us against disease. 

Water plays a crucial role transporting nutrients between cells, helping our body eliminate waste efficiently, and facilitating detoxification. By fulfilling these functions, water helps support a healthy, well-functioning immune system.

However, it is also important to understand that staying well-hydrated is one part of maintaining a healthy and functioning immune system. Other actions people should take include:

How Much Water Should You Drink Each Day?

Recommendations for how much water you should drink each day vary depending on the source of information, your gender, size, and activity level. 

The University of California, Irvine’s Integrative Health Institution recommends drinking half of your body weight in ounces of water each day. So if you weigh 140 pounds, shoot for drinking 70 ounces each day. If you weigh 200 pounds, you need to drink around 100 ounces each day.

Keep in mind that you lose water each day through perspiration, and if you are working out regularly you will sweat more, and so may need to consume more water to stay adequately hydrated. Similarly, if you drink beverages that contain caffeine such as coffee or tea, you will need to drink additional water to replace the water lost due to the diuretic effects of caffeine. Other waters, such as speciality sports waters, aren’t generally necessary for proper hydration. If you’re wondering, “is alkaline water good for you?”, check out our recent article on the subject.

Also note that you’ll get some of the water you need each day through your diet. That’s particularly true if you are eating a nutritious and balanced diet that includes an adequate number of fresh fruits and vegetables, both of which are rich in water.

Benefits of Good Hydration

There are many powerful reasons why you should consider staying well-hydrated beyond supporting your immune system function. Hydration is at the core of how our bodies function, which means that the effects of dehydration extend far beyond increasing our risk of getting an upper-respiratory infection. 

Here are some of the top reasons you should consider keeping your drinking water bottle topped off:

  • Good hydration supports better skin health, specifically the thickness of your skin, elasticity of it, and ability to regulate the loss of moisture.
  • Hydration reduces stress and tissue damage on the kidneys, allowing them to more easily extract waste.
  • Water is critical for ensuring our bodies adequately regulate our temperature.
  • Dehydration results in reduced endurance and increased mental and physical fatigue.
  • Even moderate levels of dehydration can negatively affect mood.
  • Adequate hydration can improve gastrointestinal function.
  • Hydration can help individuals avoid a vasovagal response, such as syncope following a blood donation.

Seek Out Good Water Sources

While it is critical to stay hydrated, it is also important to ensure the water we drink is free of potentially harmful contaminants and toxins.  Common contaminants in drinking water include:

  • Microbes, including viruses, bacteria, and parasites.
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
  • Disinfectants used in water treatment and their byproducts.
  • Heavy metals like copper and lead.
  • Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) and other synthetic chemicals.

Not only can contaminants like microbes cause acute illness in the short-term, but long-term exposure to contaminants like synthetic or organic chemicals, or heavy metals, can lead to organ damage or increase the risks of certain types of cancers. 

Because of this, it is crucial to not only drink an adequate amount of water, but also to ensure the water you drink has been appropriately treated for a wide range of potential contaminants and toxins. If you’d like to find out what’s in your water, consider scheduling an in-home water test or consulting your water supplier’s annual water quality report. These can tell you important information about your water, including the ph of tap water in your district and what types of contaminants are present.

Closing Thoughts

Adequate hydration is key to supporting a healthy, functioning immune system. Water facilitates the transfer of nutrients between cells, helps your body eliminate waste efficiently, and is crucial for the healthy function of our body’s organs and systems. 

Alongside a healthy lifestyle that includes proper nutrition, sufficient exercise, and adequate sleep, good hydration is a critical tool for ensuring your body’s immune system is functioning at its highest level. Supporting your immune system means eating good foods and drinking clean, filtered drinking water that is free from harmful contaminants.

To learn more about how to produce great-tasting drinking water cost-effectively in your own home, contact our team at Rayne Water today. We’ll help you find out what contaminants are in your water, and find you a treatment solution that fits your needs. 

Sources:

  1. “Stay Well-Hydrated for a Strong Immune System” https://ssihi.uci.edu/tip/hydration-for-immune-system/
  2. “Water, Hydration and Health” https://dx.doi.org/10.1111%2Fj.1753-4887.2010.00304.x
  3. “How to Boost Your Immune System” https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/how-to-boost-your-immune-system