Do People Drink More Water When They Use A Straw?
HomeHome > Blog > Do People Drink More Water When They Use A Straw?

Do People Drink More Water When They Use A Straw?

Jan 22, 2024

There’s the new thing with the glass straws, the old thing with the stainless-steel straws, and the save-the-turtles thing with the paper straws. Besides looking sophisticated and not wanting to smear your lip gloss, here's another fun health fact about straws.

Hydration question: Do straws make you drink more? You’re actually more likely to take in more ounces of water when you use a straw than when sipping. When you drink with a straw, you usually end up drinking faster because the liquid is skipping the process of going into your cheeks and goes straight to your esophagus. The straw actually tricks your brain and stomach because your mouth is not measuring the amount taken in, at least not as much as it would if you were drinking from a cup.

When using a straw, your mouth is constricted and puckered in, so it might seem that you're actually drinking less, but in reality, you suck liquid in more quickly than you would when gently sipping (you’re usually not desperately gulping cups per minute, even as an athlete, or at least you shouldn’t be). While there are always exceptions, you actually end up drinking more on average with a straw.

Let’s be honest, drinking with a glass or metal straw makes your drink taste better. Maybe it’s mental because you feel chic using one, but most people would agree that they prefer using a straw. Which means, using a straw gives you less of an excuse for not drinking enough water! Use a big straw with a thermos, or have a classy glass straw sitting in your glass to make hydrating easier. Add some cucumber slices or squeeze some lemon in there, and you have yourself a hydrating spa cocktail!

When you’re out for a special night and drinking cocktails, it's a good idea to be extra mindful when sipping alcohol. Don’t let that cocktail straw make your tab run high. There’s a reason beyond aesthetics why cocktail straws are teeny-tiny: It's so you take small sips, but you keep sipping. It’s easy to forget how much you’ve been sipping, then — oh no! — you need a new cocktail to replace the empty one.

Avoid plastic straws as much as possible because of xenoestrogens like BPA, and of course, they just increase toxic landfill. Paper straws are hyped as better for the ocean, but they also contribute to environmental pollution; it’s not like recycling systems burn them or toss them into a 4-H compost pile. Even paper straws are treated with chemicals in the manufacturing process (which is why they taste so gross), so putting a paper straw in your mouth and softening it with your saliva causes you to ingest some of the chemicals. Even the paper straws that are designed to be more durable contain harmful chemicals in the water-resistant coating. Not to mention, paper straws also start disintegrating into your drink — eww!

Silicone straws might be BPA-free, food-grade, less toxic than generic plastic straws, and soft yet durable, but silicone is still not a natural substance and is treated with chemicals. Also, studies show that some types of silicone are carcinogenic and toxic to the environment as well as people, especially as a fertility-hormone disruptor (*gasp* go all the mamas who use silicone baby dishes). It can be fine and considered safe for use, but it would be a good idea to just use silicone tools and not cookware that involves heating. And maybe not straws since you’d be putting them directly in your mouth.

The best straws to use long-term are glass straws, which have become increasingly more popular, or stainless-steel straws, which are more durable, easier to carry around, and harder to break. Using a recyclable metal or glass straw is better for the environment since you’re reducing waste pollution. Sure, if you go out and order a smoothie or fresh-squeezed juice then you’ll need a disposable straw, or you could just carry an extra steel straw around in your purse to have ready!

You can find stainless-steel straws here and glass straws here. Even some protein powder companies are starting to provide straw options, like Truvani. Most packages of reusable straws come with a cleaning brush, but if you need a replacement, you can find them individually.

Straws can get nasty if you don’t clean them out each day, and you don’t want bacteria building up with any gunk on the inside. Use the brush that came with your straws, and clean your straw every day! It’s not hard at all and only takes a few moments to swab a couple times (as if you’re sharpening a pencil the old-fashioned way) after you use it or at the end of the day.

Hydrating with a straw will help you reach your water goals faster and easier, plus the straw just makes it taste better (especially the glass, I’ve found). Using a glass or stainless-steel straw is more economical, more environment-friendly, and healthier for your system than disposable straws. Plus, they look cool and make you look put together. If you don’t already use or have at least one of these lovelies, order one today! You’ll be happy you did.

Don’t miss anything! Sign up for our weekly newsletter and get curated content weekly!