This article reviews the literature on how important water is to the world’s elderly population. BACKGROUND: Water is a finite resource, so we must preserve the water that we have. Physiological aspects and what water requirements our bodies maintain sum up this essential nutrient for life. Dehydration is a concern in the elderly. CONCLUSIONS: Five strategies related to water intake can promote health: (1) assess for symptoms which may indicate dehydration, (2) encourage ingestion of fluids and foods to maintain an optimal fluid level, (3) be alert to physical and clinical conditions affecting hydration in the elderly, (4) consider environmental factors which may affect body fluids, electrolytes and acid-base balance, and (5) encourage methods to increase fluid consumption.