Water 101

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Water 101

About the role of water, dehydration, how much to drink, tap water and common contaminants in water

Look for the answers to these questions as you read:

  1. What percentage of the molecules in the human body are water?
  2. What five major things does water do in the human body?
  3. What percentage of Americans are chronically dehydrated?
  4. What are some of the symptoms of dehydration?
  5. Is there any evidence that water can cure diseases?
  6. How is dehydration linked with pain?
  7. Do fruit juices, tea, and soda (mostly water) satisfy the body’s need for water?
  8. Your needs for water change on a daily basis. (True or False)
  9. Tap water in America is safe to drink (True or False)
  10. You need a special fluoride filter to remove fluoride from water. (True or False)

drinking watrer.jpgWater is a big issue – for a number of reasons. Not only is it a valuable and increasingly depleted resource, but it is also the major constituent of our bodies. Without it we cannot survive. And yet, few understand the most basic concepts around this life-sustaining substance. If you want to go on an amazing journey with water, this article will get you started. It will answer some questions about the role of water and the importance of hydration; It will help you understand water’s connection to pain, illness and aging; it will also reveal why you never want to drink tap water again.

The Role of Water

H20 – two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen. Water might be everywhere, but we cannot take it for granted. Water makes up 75% (or more) of our body’s weight. The human brain is 95% water, blood is over 90% water and lungs are over 90% water—by weight. Yet, what most people do not know is that of the total number of molecules in the body, over 99% of them are water! Without water, we would die in a few days.

Water is also important to the mechanics of the human body. Just as a car cannot run without gas and oil, the body cannot function without water. In fact, all cellular and organ functions depend on water.

1. Water as a lubricant

Water serves as a lubricant in digestion and all other body processes. The water in saliva helps facilitate chewing and swallowing. Water also lubricates joints and cartilage and allows these to move fluidly. Even our eyes need plenty of water to work well and remain healthy.

http://ts1.mm.bing.net/th?id=H.4620900402267896&pid=1.7&w=141&h=145&c=7&rs=12. Water regulates body temperature

Our bodies control temperature through perspiration and evaporation which produces a cooling effect. Blood is routed to the surface of the skin where it can be cooled and then carried back to the interior of the body. In a cold environment, the skin maintains body temperature by shunting blood away from the surface thereby conserving heat within the body. The movement of water also transports vital blood plasma (92% water by weight).

3. Water removes wastes/toxins

Water flushes toxins and waste from the body through urination and perspiration. Water aids in bowel regularity which ensures that wastes are removed quickly. Waste buildup occurs when the body becomes dehydrated, causing headaches, and other illnesses. Drinking enough water also lessens the burden on kidneys and liver.

4. Water transports nutrients

Nutrients from the food we eat are broken down during digestion. They become dissolved in water. Water allows nutrients to pass through capillaries in the intestinal wall to the blood where they can be distributed throughout the body to all the cells and organs.

5. Water transfers signals and information

For a long time, water was thought to be limited to the above 4 functions. Now we are aware that water transfers information throughout the entire body – at lightning speed. It is the information link to every cell, organ and tissue.

Dehydration

A mere 2% drop in our body’s water supply can trigger signs of dehydration: fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on smaller print, such as a computer screen. Mild dehydration is also one of the most common causes of daytime fatigue. An estimated 75% of Americans have mild, chronic dehydration. That’s a scary statistic for a developed country where water is readily available.

Batmanghelidj.jpgWater is so important that your body actually has a specific drought management system to prevent dehydration and to ensure your survival. Dr. Feredoon Batmanghelidj, author of Your Body’s Many Cries for Water and several other revolutionary books, is one of the leading authorities on dehydration. As a medical doctor, he stumbled upon what he later called the “Water Cure” while treating a man in prison. With no medicine available, he was able to relieve the symptoms of a peptic ulcer with 2 simple glasses of water. This and other experiences led him to years of discovery—uncovering basic principles that pharmaceutical corporations do not want you to know.

According to Dr. Batmangjelidj, (Dr. B) there are 4 false assumptions regarding water. The most important one is that we cannot get our water needs with other liquids like fruit juice, tea, coffee, and definitely not from soda or caffeinated drinks. Nothing substitutes for pure water.

glass of water.jpgThere are two kinds of water in the body. There is already occupied and engaged water, and there is free water. The body needs to replace its free water every day. We lose about a quart of water through breathing every day. When we don’t replenish it, the body tightens up—everywhere, from constriction of the bronchials (asthma) to constriction of blood vessels (high blood pressure). Dr. B identifies (and supports with research) over 90 health problems that water cures.

Pure water is connected with numerous life-giving functions. If we are dehydrated, these functions suffer and in time will cause nutrient deficiencies no matter how much we eat. Obesity, insulin-independent diabetes, hypertension, strokes, depression, chronic fatigue, asthma, allergies, autoimmune diseases, and ADD are symptoms of dehydration, according to Dr. B.

Symptoms of mild dehydration include dark urine, unexplained tiredness, irritability, headache, dry mouth, and dizziness. Mild dehydration also impacts your mood. Experiments by the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service have shown that dehydration is associated with confusion, fatigue, and negative moods. One of Dr. B’s biggest messages is:

Don’t wait to get thirsty to drink water!

According to his research, dehydration also causes premature, painful death.

A glass of water, anyone?

Water and Pain

https://origin.ih.constantcontact.com/fs081/1101461860437/img/72.jpgDehydration is the primary pain-producing problem in the human body. It occurs when there is persistent water shortage, particularly in pain-sensing nerve cells. When the body is in drought management mode (dehydrated), there is not enough free water to go around and wash out the toxic by-products of metabolic processes. Nerve endings sense toxicity and sound the alarm of pain to stop the activity causing toxic waste build-up.

As an example, when the heart muscle is short of free water and has to beat faster to cope with strenuous activity, pain is produced. Many kinds of pain are thirst for free water. Dr. B’s research shows that even cholesterol in the arteries of the heart is caused by dehydration.

Water has natural medicinal effects far superior to pain medication. Pain medications shut down the call for water, but they do not correct the free water shortage. Water corrects the pain-producing drought and saves the body from further danger.

When and How much water to Drink

One of the best times to drink water is first thing in the morning. After six to eight hours without water, the body’s reserves need to be “topped off.” With 8 – 16 ounces of water first thing in the morning, the digestive tract is primed before breakfast. This helps the whole digestive process. Another good habit is to drink 8-16 ounces of water at least 10 minutes before every meal and before exercise. Exercise requires water for muscle function as well as to remove the lactic acid from tissues following exercise. Drinking before meals has several advantages. It helps the body to distinguish between thirst and hunger. Most people do not eat as much when they begin with a glass of water. And when water is consumed before the meal, they tend to chew more completely, rather than washing food down. Most health professionals agree it is best not to drink too much water with a meal. This dilutes the stomach acids that are required for digestion. It is also a good idea to drink 8-16 ounces of water two to three hours after each meal. In this way, water is continually being consumed throughout the day.

The widely established recommendation for eight, 8-ounce glasses of water every day has no scientific basis. Every individual has a unique need for water that varies according to gender, age, height, weight, and level of activity. Men require more water than women; overweight individuals need more than those who are thin; both the young and the elderly (for different reasons) require more water; and our level of activity changes the requirement for water on an hourly basis.

The best guideline to follow is to drink half your body weight (measured in pounds) in ounces of water every day. This means that a person weighing 150 pounds ought to drink about 75 ounces (just over half a gallon) of water under normal circumstances. Men should drink more. Remember that this amount of water needs to come from pure water—not processed fruit juices, soda, coffee, or other beverages.

http://www.andersonwater.com/images/tapwater.jpg Tap water

Drinking plenty of water is important. However, drinking contaminated water can often do more harm than good. Since water is meant to flush the toxins and waste materials from your body, drinking contaminated water can add to the toxic burden. Unfortunately, the average U.S. citizen faces numerous threats from the water that flows from the tap. Depending on where you live and depending on the effectiveness of your municipal water treatment, any number of contaminants can be present in the tap water that is supposedly “safe” to drink. Each year the correlation between tap water and many health issues becomes stronger. Across the nation about 50% of drinking water comes from ground water which is currently contaminated with a variety of pesticides, fertilizers, and other wastes. And if your source of water isn’t from ground water, don’t think you are any better off. Other sources of water are often worse, with industrial wastes, disinfectants, and even pharmaceuticals that make their way into municipal water supplies. In a review of more than 22 million tap water quality tests, 260 water contaminants were found to be routinely served to the public. More than half of these contaminants are unregulated—public health officials have not set safety standards, and testing for them is currently not required.

Common contaminants in tap water

Chlorine

Simply stated, chlorine is a pesticide. Its purpose as a drinking water additive is to kill living organisms. When you consume water containing chlorine, it also destroys cells and tissues inside your body. The long-term dangers of drinking chlorinated water have been recognized for many years. When chlorine is added to water, it combines with organic compounds to form carcinogenic by-products called trihalomethanes or THMs. Although concentrations of these carcinogens are low, scientists believe they are responsible for many human cancers. THMs may also have an effect on the growing fetus during pregnancy.

Chloramines

Chloramines are a more recent water treatment additive that are now being used in many water treatment facilities. They are a combination of gasses (chlorine and ammonia) used in addition to or in place of chlorine because their effects are longer lasting. However, numerous difficulties have been identified with the use of chloramines as a water disinfectant:

  • Chloramines remain in the water longer than chlorine—they do not evaporate when left in the open as chlorine does.
  • Chloramines are toxic to fish, and cannot be removed by boiling.
  • Chloramines react with (deteriorate) certain types of rubber hoses and gaskets, such as those on washing machines and hot water heaters.
  • Chloramines react with lead and lead solder in plumbing, causing toxic levels of lead to be released into drinking water.
  • Chloramines are potentially lethal to kidney dialysis patients.

Heavy metals

Lead, mercury, aluminum, cadmium, and arsenic are heavy metals. They are dangerous in water even at extremely low concentrations. Many sources of tap water contain heavy metals.

skull and crossbones.jpgFluoride

Water fluoridation for the prevention of dental cavities is still a hotly contested subject. However,those who are willing to look beyond the politics and the money will find a vast array of evidence against fluoridation. In 1990, Newsweek magazine advised the public that “political decisions [about fluoridation] were at odds with expert advice” and that “fluoride from your tap may not do much good—and may cause cancer.”

Pesticides

Pesticides are common synthetic, organic contaminants in water. They reach surface and well watersupplies from the runoff in agricultural areas. Some pesticides decompose and break down rapidly. However, many of them take years to break down. There is no EPA maximum contamination level for pesticides. Most go unregulated in water.   http://emptyyourcup.com/blog/uploaded/iStock_000003492238Small_9.jpg

Pharmaceuticals

A vast array of pharmaceutical drugs, including antibiotics, pain medications, anti-depressants, cholesterol-lowering drugs, and medications for asthma, epilepsy, mental illness, and heart problems, have found their way into drinking water. Some drugs, including widely used cholesterol medications, tranquilizers, and anti-epileptic medications, are completely resistant to current municipal wastewater treatment processes. Chlorine is only marginally effective. In fact, there is evidence that the addition of chlorine makes some pharmaceuticals more toxic.

Filtration/Purification, a must!

For most people, drinking tap water is no longer an option. The difficulty lies in identifying what is in your water so that you can select an appropriate technology for contaminant removal. If you are looking for broad spectrum filtration, try an activated carbon filter. If bacteria are your concern, consider ultraviolet light. If you have concerns about contaminants that are very small (such as fluoride), purchase a fluoride filter or a reverse osmosis system. The very best water systems on the market today use a combination of technologies to remove as many different types of contaminants as possible. Depending on your needs, there are a number of types of filtration systems available. When your water is either treated with chloramines or is fluoridated, pay special attention to get a system that will address these concerns. Most filters will not filter out these contaminants.

Read Water 201 for information on bottled water, alkaline water, pH, minerals, ORP, and more on water contaminants.

Answers to the quiz

1.What percentage of the molecules in the human body are water? Over 99%.

2.What five major things does water do in the human body? Lubricates, regulates temperature, removes toxins, transports nutrients, send signals.

3.What percentage of Americans are chronically dehydrated? Over 75%.

4. What are some of the symptoms of dehydration? Dark urine, unexplained tiredness, irritability, headache, dry mouth, confusion and dizziness.

5.Is there any evidence that water can cure diseases? Yes, Dr. Batmangjelidj has written several books on this topic.

6.How is dehydration linked with pain? When the body is in dehydrated there is not enough water wash out toxic by-products. Nerve endings sense toxicity and cause pain to stop the activity causing toxic waste build-up.

7.Do fruit juices, tea, and soda (mostly water) satisfy the body’s need for water? No.

8.Your needs for water change on a daily basis. (True or False) True.

9.Tap water in America is safe to drink (True or False) False.

10.You need a special fluoride filter to remove fluoride from water. (True or False) True, fluoride is difficult to remove with most standard filtration devices.

© Macek Enterprises

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