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Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) are reference values that are quantitative estimates of nutrient intakes to be used for planning and assessing diets for healthy people. They include both recommended intakes and upper intake levels.

Although the reference values are based on data, the data are often insufficient or drawn from studies that had limitations in addressing the question. Scientific judgment is required in setting the reference values. 

  • EAR - Estimated Average Requirement - a nutrient intake value that is estimated to meet the requirement of half the healthy individuals in a group.
  • RDA - Recommended Dietary Allowance - the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirement of nearly all (97 to 98 percent) healthy individuals in a group.
  • AI - Adequate Intake: a value based on observed or experimentally determined approximations of nutrient intake by a group of healthy people.
    Used when an RDA cannot be determined.
  • UL - Tolerable Upper Intake Level - the highest level of daily nutrient intake that is likely to pose no risk of adverse health effects to almost all individuals in the general population. As intake increases above the UL, the risk of adverse effects increases.

Simone Weil

Imaginary good is boring; real good is always new, marvelous, intoxicating.

Water

Water is an essential nutrient - it is required in amounts that exceed the body's ability to produce it. All biochemical reactions occur in water. It fills the spaces in and between cells and helps form structures of large molecules such as protein and glycogen. 

Most foods contain water. The body can usually get 20% of its total water requirements from solid foods alone. The human body can last weeks without food, but only days without water. 

The digestion process also produces water as a byproduct and can provide around 10 per cent of the body’s water requirements.  

Water is a transparent and nearly colorless chemical substance. Its chemical formula is H2O, meaning that its molecule contains one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms

Water covers 71% of the Earth's surface. It is vital for all known forms of life. On Earth, 97% of the planet's crust water is found in seas and oceans, 1.7% in groundwater, 1.7% in glaciers and the ice caps. Only 2.5% of this water is freshwater, and 98.8% of that water is in ice (excepting ice in clouds) and groundwater. Less than 0.3% of all freshwater is in rivers, lakes.

Safe drinking water is essential to humans and other lifeforms even though it provides no calories or organic nutrients. ~One billion people still lack access to safe water. It was estimated that by 2025 more than half of the world population will be facing water-based vulnerability, and by 2030 water demand in some developing regions of the world will exceed supply by 50%.

Approximately 70% of the freshwater used by humans goes to agriculture. 

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