The short answer is No. There are several issues with waiting to get thirsty (see below). For most people, it makes sense to have regular meals. Similarly it is best to develop a regular habit for hydration.

1) If you consistently allow yourself to get thirsty before you drink water, you are consistently exposing yourself to some level of dehydration, which is not good for your physical, mental and emotional health. In fact, we are likely to neglect or forget about thirst when under stress, until the thirst becomes so powerful that it truly gets our attention. By that time, we start getting dehydrated, which reduces our performance in dealing with whatever stress we are facing.

2) Many beverages (particularly caffeinated soda & cola drinks, energy drinks, alcoholic drinks, and to a lesser extent, coffee and tea) have dehydrating and/or diuretic (increased urine formation) effects on the body. When you consume such beverages, you need to drink extra water for proper hydration.

3) Scientific research shows that during the aging process, our thirst response progressively decreases, which leads to increasing incidence of dehydration and subsequent problems among the elderly. Thus relying on thirst alone is not a good strategy for staying hydrated, particularly as we get older.

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