Why Drinking 8 Glasses of Water Per Day is a Myth – Dr. Berg Explains

Does someone keep telling you to drink more water? Watch this first. 

"Adolph EF. The regulation of the water content of the human organism. J Physiol (London). 192155(1-2):114-32"

"Vivanti AP. Origins for the estimations of water requirements in adults. Eur J Clin Nutr. 201266(12):1282-9."

0:00 8 glasses of water a day myth
0:30 The common thought 
0:47 Water myths  
3:35 Hyponatremia
4:10 How much water I drink 

Today we're going to talk about the "8 glasses of water a day" myth. I'm going to go through the 5 lies about drinking more water. Many people were taught to drink 8 glasses of water per day. But do you really need to do this?

Water myths:
1. 60% of the body is water—False 
2. The body doesn't know when it's thirsty—False 
3. Water flushes out fat—False
4. Water flushes out toxins—False 
5. Water helps dry skin—False

People that drink the most water are actually the most dehydrated because of the difference in electrolytes.

Hyponatremia is a condition where you can get really sick or even die because of drinking too much water.

I drink about 2-3 cups of water a day. Your body adjusts to maintain a natural balance. Just make sure only to drink when you're thirsty. 

Dr. Eric Berg DC Bio:
Dr. Berg, age 57, is a chiropractor who specializes in Healthy Ketosis & Intermittent Fasting. He is the author of the best-selling book The Healthy Keto Plan, and is the Director of Dr. Berg Nutritionals. He no longer practices, but focuses on health education through social media.

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Dr. Eric Berg received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic in 1988. His use of “doctor” or “Dr.” in relation to himself solely refers to that degree. Dr. Berg is a licensed chiropractor in Virginia, California, and Louisiana, but he no longer practices chiropractic in any state and does not see patients so he can focus on educating people as a full time activity, yet he maintains an active license. This video is for general informational purposes only. It should not be used to self-diagnose and it is not a substitute for a medical exam, cure, treatment, diagnosis, and prescription or recommendation. It does not create a doctor-patient relationship between Dr. Berg and you. You should not make any change in your health regimen or diet before first consulting a physician and obtaining a medical exam, diagnosis, and recommendation. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Thanks for watching! Drinking 8 glasses of water per day may not actually be the best thing for your health. I hope this helps you better understand why.

Dave McKinnon

  • The Fun Place says:

    This doctor should have his own TV show.
    He speaks the truth.
    Thank you Dr. Berg.

  • Stacy B says:

    Good Lord, this makes total sense to me. I’ve fallen into the “drinking 8 glasses of H2O” trap, and I’m up all night using the bathroom. This info is going to help me get much more quality sleep. Thanks, Doc!

  • Marc Bolinger says:

    Having had kidney stones twice in my life-Both urologists said to drink more water, I ignored the first, Finally at 32 I listened to the second (Who said 1/2 gallon of water a day can decrease 25% of all medical issues) I’ve not been sick in 4 years and never feel sluggish, I’m going with water is good

    • CeCe says:

      @Hal 99.9% of physicians will recommend 1/2 gallon of water or more per day for healthy people, very few say otherwise.

    • Hal says:

      @CeCe obviously. were you trying to make a point? it looks like you didn’t get the one I made…

    • CeCe says:

      @Hal You tried to shame someone who listened to 2 Urologists because he didn’t agree with one youtube content creator who disagrees with 99 percent of physicians recommendations. That was the point.

    • Hal says:

      @CeCe I was making the point that he left out the rest of the details of his doctors recommendations. Every doctor on earth will recommend drinking a minimum amount of water, you missed that apparently. Thanks for being the internets white knight, but my point still stands, whether you’re offended for someone else or not.

  • DejaDrewit says:

    I’ve Always struggled drinking water throughout the day I can go hours without it . people are always telling me that I have to drink more water and I just couldn’t do it. Thanks Dr Berg! I dont feel bad about it anymore!

    • Carpediem says:

      No, he’s saying that drinking the excess amounts of water that’s been conventional wisdom for a long time is incorrect as it’s unnecessary and can be toxic to health. He’s not saying you don’t need to drink water. Whenever you feel even a bit thirsty, you need to drink water. Your body needs water. Just not an excess of it to the point that you’re drinking frequently just to drink. Also, your activity levels indicate the amount of water you need to consume. Highly active people need to consume more water because of the greater energy they expel, and they also need to drink more electrolytes.

    • Miss Miami says:

      I got dehydrated yesterday at work because I didn’t want to drink tap water and I didn’t bring any. Paid for it last night and today.

    • Star Fire says:

      Thank God for this video! I can’t drink that much water either I drink when I’m thirsty and that’s it. And also if you consume collagen (not all collagen is the same) that has five types in it your skin is gonna look awesome and you don’t need to apply lotion all the time it’ll be less frequent and you’ll see a big difference in your skin and nails and hair and everything. Because your body is made up of mostly collagen. I highly recommend collagen from Biotrust. Great company! Customer for life!

    • Jane Barbontin says:

      @Carpediem I’m still trying to figure how much water is acceptable for me… I weigh 119 lbs. and I’m 5’2…

    • Carpediem says:

      @Jane Barbontin Don’t worry about exact amounts. Drink whenever you feel even a tiny bit thirsty, and do drink at least every hour. Obviously, when you’re sick, you should stay hydrated more frequently. Make sure your daily hydration includes electrolytes.

  • Mrs.RY Robinson says:

    I have been a water junkie for years. But I have had severed leg cramps in the evening oftentimes having to go to bed early. Since I have decreased my water to a few bottles a day for the past 5 days, I have not experienced any leg pains. Thank you Dr for sharing this info which changed my life.

    • foh says:

      mrs robinson what’s your opinion on alkaline water ? spring water ? purified water ? is their a preference ? i myself love spring water .. it taste so clean , No salty , acidic taste at all

    • Action Rick says:

      How long do you think it took to develop that ?

  • Barbara Lowe says:

    This video is an answer to prayer! Thank you so much, Dr. Berg! I’m so thirsty most of the time and I’ve been drinking loads of water… all day and all night. Plus urinating every 2 hrs! I’m 72yrs old and this is really wearing me down. It’s been going on for yrs now. I’m not diabetic… check it periodically. So I’m good there. I’ve been praying for an answer and I believe this is it. Thank you so much! I’ll be getting more electrolytes into me. Any suggestions? I buy some drinks with electrolytes but would like to know the best. I know you mentioned Pierre Water but are there any others in case Pierre is not available? Thx again…I love your videos. I’ve recently started intermediate fasting. So far so good! 👍😊

  • Norma salgado says:

    Thank you Dr. Berg for this informative video. I personally could never achieve the 8 glass/day model prescribed by most “experts”. I have many relatives who lived into their 90’s and drank very little water. Growing up in the 1960’s and 70’s, bottled water didn’t even exist to my knowledge. We drank tap water and somehow survived. I pondered whether the bottled water industry had something to do with this push for drinking excessive amounts of water. Thanks again for being the voice of reason.

    • Jean Young Sing says:


    • Jean Young Sing says:


    • Colton Morrison says:

      You’re drinking more because the bottled water doesn’t hydrate you enough as tapwater does because they remove every mineral in the water which is necessary.

    • Philosopherous says:

      Yeah, it would be incredible difficult for me to drink 8 glasses of water a day. I don’t know if I can force myself. I seem to naturally not require too much water

    • غذائك دوائك says:

      ❤️ fact. My grandmother, my father’s mother, lived for about 110 years, and she only went to a doctor once. I took her to a human doctor to have her tooth extracted only.

  • Mamo Kim says:

    Wow. I’ve been struggling for the past 12 years to drink half my weight in water and I have had serious water retention issues. I’m on keto now (for 3 years) and no longer fighting water retention (except when I slip during the holidays and have a bit more carbs than I should); but lately I have been having too much difficulty forcing myself to drink water. When I don’t drink the “recommended” daily allotment, I wake up feeling more refreshed, but puzzled by it. I’m not sure if you’re right, but I’m going to relax on my rigid water drinking regimen without fear now and see where it takes me. Wow. Mind blown.

    • Spencer 8501 says:

      Salt and sugar attracts water. We need sufficient amount of sugar and salt for electrolytes. Balance is key.

    • Action Rick says:

      How is it going now? And how long did it take to recover if at all ?

    • Mamo Kim says:

      @Action Rick I drink at least 2 quarts per day as compared to the 84 oz I used to drink, and I feel better and sleep thru the night. I’m also trying out sea salt and water; half tsp in a cup of filtered water 1st thing in the morning. I do it for the minerals. My body for some reason requires a lot of minerals. I feel great but bc of the salt I’m watching if my water needs change. And now, the swelling is not an issue at all these days when I exercise (aerobics, weights, stretching/yoga). The change for me was immediately noticeable…within a day or 2 I felt better.

    • Sam' Mas says:

      Wow, to think we are born for this; the constant eating regiment. How privileged some human beings are!!

  • Châu Nguyễn says:

    You shouldn’t force yourself to drink too much but I think it’s healthy to keep drinking more than you feel thirsty, or at least keep a water bottle or cup close to you always so you can drink whenever you feel thirsty. It hashelped me feel more energised.

  • Mohamed Jaber says:

    In this Crazy world, there are only a few honest Doctors and Dr. Berg is one of them.
    I will only drink water when I’m thirsty and only eat when I’m hungry.

    Thank you so much😊

    • Baroness J.Alexandra says:

      SAME HERE!!!

    • SuperJoseco says:


    • Noah Flores says:

      @SuperJoseco pretty sure if you’re dealing with issues, then yes drink 8 to 12 glasses. He’s talking about people who aren’t dealing with issues of that nature.

    • Behindthen0thing says:

      I only drank water when I was thirsty and I was having kidney problems from dehydration.

  • El says:

    The amount of water or fluid we need depends on our electrolyte levels as Dr Berg says. You get thirsty when they’re too high, either by exercise or sweating etc. In Winter I barely drink any, just hot drinks only but in summer 2 – 4 litres or more depending on my activity level. If I drink only water then I mix it with a pinch of Himalayan salt and something else like coconut water, anything that has cellulose to increase it’s absorption.

  • Cheryl Forino says:

    Love this video. I’ve never been big on drinking a lot of water. I’ve always had to force it. I drink only water, (coffee in morning and occasional herbal tea at night), and it’s when I’m thirsty. I think we need to “listen” to our bodies more and stop driving ourselves crazy with everything we hear.
    Thanks Dr. Berg.

  • Grace Aswath says:

    A 4min video and I have learned so much than reading countless of health articles in google. I too am guilty of teaching the same stuff to my daughter! I think educators must learn from this channel too. A lot of the videos here are very helpful and explained in simplest manner. Thanks a lot!

  • Craig Washington says:

    “Drink when you are thirsty” every animal on Earth recognizes this. Why humans act against nature is beyond me. Thanks for the content Doc. I know this is an old video but so helpful.

    • Jackson Relaxin’ says:

      If it’s beyond you, you’ve clearly never had a job or done activities that require adequate hydration. Go ahead and drink only when you’re thirsty when you’re unloading trailers of 30lb boxes for hours at a time in triple digit heat. Dr Berg could have mentioned this obvious fact but instead wants to generalize. Every person I’ve known who’s gotten a heat injury was because of dehydration that could’ve been prevented by drinking water when they weren’t thirsty. How bout that.

    • CookieD456 says:

      @Jackson Relaxin’ 👏👏👏👏👏

    • Henry Jiao says:

      @Jackson Relaxin’ Ok well if you’re working out, then obviously you’re gonna drink more water cause you’re thirsty. I usually drink far more water, say, after a run then on a hot day than I typically do

    • Jackson Relaxin’ says:

      @Henry Jiao you’re supposed to drink electrolytes after you work out and during if you need it. Water is to be drank 5-6 hours before you do it at least because that’s how it gets processed in your body. Anyone who speaks casually about consuming water isn’t working hard enough or hot enough to understand why hydrating beforehand is essential, not optional.

  • shannon mitchell says:

    I’ve heard all these false claims over the years. Every time I tried to drink a lot of water I’d get dizzy, have heart palpitations. This makes perfect sense! Thank you!

  • Syed Saqib says:

    Thank you Dr. Berg. This myth of 8 glasses per day has always baffled me especially when it comes from “experts”. I only drink water when I feel thirsty and I do great. Actually when I tried to follow the “experts” and pushed more water down my throat, I felt sick and bloated with absolutely zero benefits.

  • Cristina Rossi says:

    I just discovered you and thank you for taking the time to put these videos out to the public. I understand they take a lot of time and energy to create and produce. Also, I love that your videos are usually between 15- 30 minutes and are specific. Easy to understand, write down , if necessary, and implement the strategies to better health. I’ve been on some what of a food journey and a lot of info is so contradictory and many podcasts are 2-3 hours long. There just isn’t time. Thank you again Dr. Berg, you have helped me, immensely.

  • Yvette Lucia says:

    Thank you Dr. Berg for clarifying the water myth. I have been saying for years that I didn’t believe drinking that much water was helping me at all.

  • Sabahswiss77 says:

    This is a music to my ears lol. I only drink water when I’m thirsty and everyone is saying that we should drink 8 glasses /2 liters of water every day. I’m 9 years too late but so glad you made this video Dr. Berg 🙏

  • To Prepare His Way says:

    But now, 9 years later, Dr. Berg recommends drinking 2 1/2 litres of water a day to avoid kidney stones when taking vitamin D3. Just goes to show that each of us is always learning, and that some things that we are confident about today we might not be so confident about in the future.

    • Jacob Beaudry says:

      Exactly, I’ve noticed a lot of his older videos have bad information, kind of surprised he leaves them up

    • Skorp says:

      Because he recommends a huge amount of vitamin D3 and it would be irresponsible to tell people to consume large quanities of a vitamin that requires a large amount of fluid.

    • To Prepare His Way says:

      ​@SkorpYou are correct. Therefore, the responsible thing regarding this video would be for him to pin a comment as a disclaimer and qualifier so everyone who comes across this video does not follow the advice of this video as a hard and fast rule.

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