Can drinking too much water flush out needed nutrients?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 05, 2011 at 5:15 AM

Sometimes I like to consciously drink lots of water (say, during a fast). Nothing too excessive--maybe about 1.5 gallons for the day. It makes me feel "reset."

Could continually drinking water for a period of time when not thirsty have a negative effect? Increased excretion of vitamins/minerals?

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3 Answers



on August 05, 2011
at 11:16 PM

Too much water consumption can lead to overhydration and hyponatremia (low sodium levels), but if your kidneys are normal this does not usually happen unless your fluid intake exceeds about 2 gallons (7.6 liters) per day.

Most vitamins are not lost in the urine unless your body isn't using them. Hence the saying that taking supplements is a great way to make expensive urine.

If you're concerned about diluting your electrolytes, you can get a blood test to check your sodium level. Normal is 135 to 145 milli-equivalents per liter (mEq/L), or 135 to 145 millimoles per liter (mmol/L).


on August 06, 2011
at 12:50 AM

Here's some general, handy info that is specific enough to be useful and is very clear and to the point.


And yes, there are few things in this life that you cannot overdo. Water can be overdone.



on August 05, 2011
at 05:43 AM

Yeah it's not the best idea for various reasons but 1.5gal once in a while is probably just fine though, especially if it's hot and dry wherever you are. I wouldn't do it all at once but over the course of a day that's only 300-500ml/hr which most people should be okay with. You don't want to run down your electrolytes though.

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