Everything you ever wanted to know about water

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By Julia Abelsohn

We drink it, we bathe in it and we cook with it. We all know that we couldn’t survive without water but here are some facts that you might not know about water.


  • Roughly 70 percent of an adult’s body is made up of water. At birth, water accounts for approximately 80 percent of an infant’s body weight.


  • Water dissolves more substances than any other liquid. Wherever it travels, water carries chemicals, minerals, and nutrients with it.


  • Somewhere between 70 and 75 percent of the earth’s surface is covered with water.


  • Of all the water on the earth, humans can used only about three tenths of a percent of this water. Such usable water is found in groundwater aquifers, rivers, and freshwater lakes.


  • The average person in North America uses anywhere from 80-100 gallons of water per day. Flushing the toilet actually takes up the largest amount of this water.


  • All known forms of life depend on water.


  • Annually, Canada’s rivers discharge 7% of the world’s renewable water supply – 105 000 cubic metres per second.


  • By the time a person feels thirsty, his or her body has lost over one percent of its total water amount.


  • Water is absolutely essential to the human body’s survival. A person can live for about a month without food, but only about a week without water.


  • Water is the primary mode of transportation for all nutrients in the body and is essential for proper circulation.


  • Canada has 563 lakes having an area greater than 100 square kilometres. Although Canada has about 20 per cent of the world’s fresh water, it’s estimated that only about one per cent of that resource is replenished each year by rain or snowfall.


  • Women who are pregnant or nursing need to drink more water.


  • We not only lose water through urination, skin evaporation and sweat, we lose water through breathing. The average person takes between 17,280 and 23,040 breaths a day. That’s a lot of potential to lose the water your body so desperately needs to be healthy.


  • To help your body stay hydrated and get healthier simultaneously, drink one half to one full glass of water when you get hungry. If after 20 minutes you are still hungry, go ahead and get yourself the fuel you need and eat. However, you may just help yourself to not consume extra, non-essential calories.


  • Every day we lose about 3 liters of water.


  • Lack of water, or dehydration, reduces the amount of blood in your body, forcing your heart to pump harder in order to deliver oxygen-bearing cells to your muscles.


  • The total amount of water on the earth is about 326 million cubic miles of water.

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Picture of Julia Abelsohn

Julia Abelsohn

Julia Abelsohn is a writer, editor and clinical aromatherapist. She has been sharing her expertise and passion for health and wellness for over 25 years. When not at her desk she can be found exploring the many trails and green spaces near her home in Edmonton, Alberta.

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