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How much water?

Discussion in 'Vocals' started by FeelGoodRvlution, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. So I've been drinking a lot of water lately and rare to none caffeine products but is there a "recommended" amount for singing, I'm 6' and weigh about 150 so any recommends?
  2. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    Drinking a lot of water is good. The recommended daily minimum is 8, 8 ounce glasses of water per day.

    Caffeine will not interfere with your singing voice but it is a diuretic.

    What you do want to stay away from before singing is smoking and especially alcohol. Alcohol will do more to disrupt your singing voice. So it is best not to drink any alcohol the day before.

    Now if you are talking about announcing, I'd recommend a fifth of Jack Daniels and a pack of Chesterfield's! Now, that's the kind of announcer I like to hear! When I try that, I just sound like Lucille Ball. Or is that Brenda Vaccaro for Playtex tampons?? Beatrice Arthur?? Carole Channing?

    Rickyyyyyyyyyyy! Wahhhhhhh!
    Ms. Remy Ann Ball
  3. xjake88x

    xjake88x Guest

    Caffeine on its own (for example, a caffeine pill) wouldn't affect your singing voice, but coffee SURE will.

    Also, keep in mind that milk is THE WORST for singing. Don't ingest milk at any time during a day you want to sing decent.
  4. pmolsonmus

    pmolsonmus Well-Known Member


    Please don't spout misinformation based on bad science. Caffeine (the drug in coffee is a diuretic ( it makes you pee) thereby taking moisture away from the vocal mechanism.

    Milk is mostly water, it goes through your system and (after a few hours like all other liquids) adds moisture to the vocal mechanism. Drinking milk or any other liquid prior to singing has NO impact on the vocal mechanism. It may make your mouth wet but all liquids are blocked from your vocal chords by the epiglottis. That's a good thing!

    And for all you lemon suckers - the same is true. If you want to suck on one by all means, but don't think it's going to help your voice.

  5. VonRocK

    VonRocK Active Member

    I thought that milk products caused excessive mucus build up, and that's the reason why singers try to avoid them.
  6. xjake88x

    xjake88x Guest

    Yes, milk coats your throat and really does affect most singers voices. Maybe everyone doesn't feel the effects *shrug*
  7. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Guest

    If your mucous membranes dry out, you'll sound like Joe Cocker forever. Which I guess ain't bad if you're Joe Cocker? My mother is a former Metropolitan Opera Star and voice teacher/professor. She drinks milk and with or without it, you would be amazed at the amount of regular throat clearing I've always heard from her. You don't need to clear your throat if you like that wonderful underwater sound or like to gulp HiNote's.

    And I just love playing with my epiglottis! As long as I have plenty of fresh batteries.
    Ms. Remy Ann David
  8. magicdog

    magicdog Guest

    All dairy products are considered a bad choice if you intend to sing - avoid them for the day.

    Caffeine is also not good as stated above.

    Alcohol will only affect your voice in large quantities (Shtart shpreadin th newsshhhhh...) but in small quantities, I believe it can be actually beneficial in that it relaxes the singer, helping to promote a better performance.

    Water is very important and should be at room temperature not chilled.

    I smoke and sing but never together - I'm only a light smoker and I avoid cigs for a few hours before a performance.

    I'm not sure of a certain amount of water based on body mass but beware that excessive water intake will wash out certain vitamins and minerals from your body (I'm talking EXCESSIVE intake...!)
  9. pmolsonmus

    pmolsonmus Well-Known Member


    I'll play....

    Please explain WHY milk and dairy products are considered bad. Please point to this scientific article that everyone seems to have read except professional singers who actually have studied anatomy.

    Don't get me wrong, you will find a ton of professional singers spouting this crap, but ask a friggin' doctor. ANY food or drink that you take into your mouth starts down your throat and is blocked by your epiglottis so it CAN'T GET TO YOUR LUNGS. Please explain how the magic milk and dairy product recognition gene allows that to pass and affect your vocal mechanism and I'll shut up.

    If you can't explain, then please shut up.

    To answer the original question 8-12 glasses of water per day is always a good idea for a singer.

  10. taxman

    taxman Active Member

    Ask your pediatrician. In my experience, they say avoid milk when you have a cold because it can lead to extra mucus in your lungs and sinuses. It is not that the milk gets in your lungs, rather, it is an immune response/allergic reaction.
  11. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member

    Don't mean to butt in on this... but having a passing interest I thought I'd google the subject of milk and mucus production just for giggles.

    Here's two references I'd call reasonably credible... The first is from PubMed.gov, a service of N.I.H. and the second, is from the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.



    Essentially they indicate that temporary thickened saliva is the probable cause of the belief that milk causes increased mucus production.

    As far as the data they present... the research indicates that no significant increase in mucus was observed as the direct result of milk consumption.

    hmmmm... interesting....
  12. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    Wasn't there a short lived Stephen Bochco series on baseball back in the 80's where Dennis Franz played a pitching coach? I seem to remember him teaching pitchers how to throw the spitter. Told them that if they drank milk between inning it would make their spit ideal for a spitball. That would do for a source in most social science departments I've seen.
  13. magicdog

    magicdog Guest

    It has nothing to do with it getting in your lungs - the lungs only provide the motive power for the voice.

    Dairy products are known to increase production of phlegm (or mucous) and this can cause problems with the sinuses (as noted above) - this is a BAD thing for singers.
    It can also create more phlegm in the back of the throat which has to be cleared to sing properly - normally done by coughing to clear the vocal folds (chords) of the sticky mucous. This coughing action can damage the vocal folds because it just crashes them together to try and shake off the mucous.

    That's my understanding and as a singer I can say it definitely affects me if I'm singing.

  14. MadMax

    MadMax Well-Known Member


    magicdog... Odd that you mention that milk products DO indeed cause mucus and/or phlegm increase...

    What you site as more phlegm, I dare say is the thickened saliva as cited in the articles I discovered above.

    I would not say that milk/dairy products do not have an effect on singing. Just the opposite. What I would suggest is that a majority of us are just confused about what is actually happening.

    It stands to reason that thickened saliva would indeed have a profound effect on the vocal chords and the way that saliva effects a singer's tone, timbre and overall sound.
  15. magicdog

    magicdog Guest

    Hi Max

    I think this is a situation which doesn't affect everyone - the research I have read seems to be in two minds so I understand the confusion.

    I personally find that dairy products do affect me and so do many others but as stated earlier in this post some people are less affected.

    Horses for courses I guess - some people seem to be able to cope better than others.
  16. pmolsonmus

    pmolsonmus Well-Known Member

    If you have allergies to milk products- certainly THAT could/would affect the vocal mechanism due to swelling or sinus blockage or whatever form the allergy might take in the individual. Just like being around cats could have the same issues for certain singers. But to blatantly make this statement as a general rule is BAD science.

    Phlegm in the throat (unless you're gargling with it and its sitting on the epiglottis) will not significantly affect tone. If there is phlegm, you clear it, it travels down the same pipe as all other food and liquids and ends up in the stomach. Can milk cause additional or thickened phlegm? In some people, yes. In thousands upon thousands of others, no.

    The lungs are below the vocal bands, the mouth is above them. Gravity handles the rest. Saliva, thickened or not can affect the tone (only after it has been produced by the vocal bands) and then only by the minimal way in which it affects the vibrating air in your throat and mouth. Think of it as the difference between the wooden pipe of a church organ as opposed to a wet or coated pipe of a church organ. Are they different?...to an extent. Significant? I don't think so.

    I don't disagree that continuous clearing of the throat (especially if done so very agressively where the bands slam together as when coughing) can be detrimental to vocal health (anyone who understands the mechanism can't argue otherwise) However, to say that milk causes this or that MILK= BAD or almost anything food/drink related is bad (unless it affects muscle/brain ability like alcohol) is really stretching a point that isn't scientific.

    I also don't discount the "Believe it and it will happen" phenomenon. Singing is a mental process controlling invisible (to the singer) muscles and involuntary muscles like the diaphragm. If the singer believes milk affects their tone it probably will, likewise if they believe sucking on a lemon or a shot of cognac helps it probably will as well.

  17. Mckey

    Mckey Active Member

    I honestly think that a lot of its mental. If you drink milk, it DOES make your voice "feel" different. A lot of foods do this in various ways. For example, I don't know what but beef makes me cough a lot. It may not scientifically cause a problem with the voice, but your looking at it all wrong. If someone doesn't feel right in their voice, its going to effect their performance. Its like how they say that 90% of Baseball is a mental game. Confidence goes a long way. Thats why I'm going to start selling my new pill that gives everybody their best singing day ever. Its a complex mix of rare substances from the rain forrests' of Africa and South America. Placebo effect.
  18. As a vocalist myself, I can personally say that dairy products particulary cheese affects my voice. I avoid Lasagna, pizza a few days before I perform a show. Water is good but for me rest is the ultimate cure for a tired vocal. I prefer to do light vocal warmups to ease my voice tension and loosen up any flem buildup on the vocal membrane. Some vocal sprays like Vocal Eze has worked for me as well. I have tendency to buy a bottle and then some other singer says hey can I try it and for some reason I never get the bottle back. As far as milk goes, I don't think every singer is affected by it. I think if you use your headvoice more than your chestvoice, milk seems to play a factor. I have these debates with other singers over the years. They all agree that rest and vocal warmups is a key factor for them.
    My headvoice is very difficult to manage when I have thickened saliva or flem. As I warmup my voice gradually, I can feel this mucus working its way off. At this point when my headvoice is totally free, I know its safe to hit my voice hard with my chest or head.
  19. Another thing to consider is stomach reflux due to acidic foods like tomatoes. Again Pizza, Lasagna, Spaghetti. Anything highly acidic and causing stomach reflux will contribute to a irritated vocal cord. Best cure is to sleep with your head higher than your body and see the doctor if you have this problem. Get a prescription to reduce stomach reflux. I think in the last 10 years, many singers have discovered this as a problem and always blamed vocal problems on allergies or milk possibly.
  20. I guess I should add what this is all about. Water. Yes lots of it keeps the mucus membrane down.
    Also something I learned from a club singer once, Liquid calcium with Robitussin Cough Syrup. Mix 4 to 1 in the same order. Works wonders for breaking the flem and curing a irritated vocal.
    Unfortunately Liquid Calcium is getting hard to find.

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