Following the Data – A simple application for daily life that will make you healthier! – One ounce/gulp

You may have heard the following riddle:

Question: “How do you eat an elephant?”

Answer: “One bite at a time”

That is often used when there is a huge tusk, I mean task (pun intended) ahead that is so overwhelming that you don’t know where to start. That is NOT what today’s discussion is about.

Today we are talking about those EASY tasks that we never seem to approach, but that are very important to our health and welfare in the long run. We procrastinate, thinking that there is “always tomorrow”, but why wait till tomorrow? As we should have learned, especially in these trying times, is that tomorrow is never guaranteed. So, what can you do today to help get on track?

Let’s look at one simple use of data science. (As I speak the whole world is talking about how we must use the existing data to beat the coronavirus, so this seems to be timely to me, especially since most of us are supposed to be staying at home)

Let’s begin….You’ve all heard that the best things in life are free. So let’s not let “perfect” be the enemy of “good” and talk about “water”, which, compared to other liquids, is relatively free and is delivered right to your own kitchen and bathroom sinks.

I’m guessing that most of you know that the consumption of water is one of the most essential elements to leading a healthy life. If that is the case, why do so many of us disregard the advice to drink “8 – eight ounce glasses of water a day”? Even worse, how do I get my head around “64 ounces of water a day”?

Stay tuned sports fans, your life is about to improve, thanks to the Colonel’s use of data science!

Today (with an abundance of time on my hands), I decided to tackle the “64 ounces a day” dilemma.

So, we all know (I had to look it up) that there are 8 ounces in a cup. A cup is much easier to quantify than a “glass of water”, so I decided to do a very simple experiment. I measured a cup of water with a measuring cup and poured it into my oversized glass. I realized that the glass would hold more than one cup, so I added another cup, giving me a 2 cups of water. I then drank the entire glass of water (16 ounces) all the while counting the number of swallows it took me to comsume those 16 ounces. It took me 14 swallows or gulps.

We now can used this data to make quantifying “64 ounces a day” a very easy task. If 14 gulps is the same as 16 ounces (for me it was), then the total number of gulps needed per day is calculated as follows: 64/16 = 4…..and 4 times 14 =56. So, for me, I need to drink 56 gulps of water a day to maintain a healthy level of hydration!

Now, along the theme of not letting “perfect” be the enemy of “good”, it is better to drink a little more water than less, so my engineering and estimating experience tells me it is OK to round up a little bit and just say that I need 64 gulps of water a day, equivalent to the number of ounces. Oh, and yes, since my glass holds 16 ounces, I could just have easily just chosen to drink four of my big glasses of water a day. Do the math, but more importantly, FOLLOW DR. FAUCI AND DRINK WATER!!!

2 thoughts on “Following the Data – A simple application for daily life that will make you healthier! – One ounce/gulp

  1. Thanks again Joe for an insightful analogy! I like to put a slice of fresh lemon in my water glass, or even a fresh orange slice , cucumber slice or strawberries. It just adds a bit of flavor. Take care and happy gulping.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s