While we are sheltering at home, this is a great time to start a new habit of drinking more… water that is.   I am often asked how I stay healthy while working in the wine industry which involves extensive tasting, long dinners and too much travel (in normal times.)   It isn’t easy so I make sure to exercise almost every day, get enough sleep and I drink a lot of water.

Most of us live in a constant state of slight dehydration.  Drinking enough water has wonderful health benefits from flushing out toxins to promoting clear skin.  You may remember the old adage that you should drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.  Today many wellness physicians recommend drinking half of your body weight in ounces.  A 130 lb woman should drink 65 ounces which actually equates to that 8 glasses.  However, that is a half gallon of water.  When you state it in those terms it may seem a bit overwhelming.  Most of us think we drink more water than we do. 

By the time you are thirsty you are already a bit dehydrated.  And if you lead an active lifestyle you may need to increase your water intake even further.  Doing a hard, sweaty workout? You need to replenish. 

What about tea, coffee and wine?  Do these help or hurt our hydration levels?  There are varying opinions on this.  However, all of these beverages have a diuretic effect on our bodies- they cause us to lose some fluids.  And alcohol is really the worst.  Now that doesn’t mean you need to stop drinking your favorite beverage.  Wine is mine and my trick is to make sure I consume an extra glass of water for each glass of wine I drink.  This works wonderfully well to keep you from getting tipsy too!

However don’t toast with that water glass if you are superstitious.  This is a tradition started by the Royal Navy long ago.  They feared toasting with water would lead to a watery grave so pick another beverage when it is time to say ‘’Cheers!’’

If you really want to stay ahead of the game, start your morning by drinking water.  In Japan it is popular to drink four or five glasses of room temperature water when you arise even before you brush your teeth.  Warm water with lemon has become a trend in the USA but just be careful not to overdo the acid. 

I keep a water bottle at my desk, one in my car and another by my bed.  If water is easily available you will be more likely to consume it.  Buy a bottle that makes you happy.  I have one with my company logo, one with art by Keith Haring and one that holds a half gallon with lines that remind me to drink water every two hours.  Now is a good time to start a new habit and hydration is one easy way to improve your health.

Enjoy being with your families as you may never get this much time together again.  Open that bottle of wine you have been saving for a special occasion and toast to your health.  Then drink a another glass of water.


  • Ann Colgin is the Founder and Co-Owner of Napa Valley-based boutique winery Colgin Cellars, known for its handcrafted small production red wines. Colgin joined the Board of Trustees of LACMA in 2007, is the Co-Head of Acquisitions and has chaired the Collectors Committee Weekend since 2009. She is also on the Executive Committee of the Centre Pompidou Les Amis. Colgin holds a BA from Vanderbilt University and completed the Sotheby's Decorative Works of Art program in London. She received an MA in fine arts administration from New York University in 1984. Colgin serves as a consultant to the Sotheby's Wine Department and helped establish some of the top charity wine auctions across the country. Colgin Cellars produces red wines of harmony and precision from extraordinary hillside vineyards in the heart of the Napa Valley. Sites of unique location and distinctive geological profiles were selected that produce wines that express perfume, freshness, and minerality while capturing the intensity and luscious fruit of the Napa Valley.