The consequences of not drinking enough water
by Sue Kira, Naturopath & Clinical Nutritionist
Water is involved with every metabolic process, electrical exchange, bio-chemical pathway, physical and mental action in the body.
Our muscles are 70% water, our blood 82%, bones contain up to 25% water, and our brain 85% water.
Three quarters of the body is water, yet most people don’t drink enough
If your body doesn’t get enough water, it will have to recycle what it already has. This means it has to re-filter it through the kidneys placing extra burden on your kidneys and your liver.
Water is the element which extracts nutrients from food, transports them to the blood, replenishes vital fluids, and helps us to detoxify the body. Lack of water produces fatigue and can contribute to toxemia.
Dehydration is one of the main causes of fluid retention. The body is forced to store water as a survival mechanism if it’s not getting enough water. Fluid retention is where fluid is stored outside the cells, creating puffiness, often seen in the legs, feet, hands and ankles, which puts pressure on blood vessels and reduces the flow of blood. That can increase the risk of blood clots.
Dehydration is often the cause of chronic pain, including headaches and arthritis, due to the concentration of acids and toxins recirculating the body and due to drying of the lubricating layer of interfacial tissue. This creates friction (rubbing together) causing tissue inflammation and pain.
Proportional to the volume of water that enters the stomach, a hormone neurotransmitter ‘motilin’ is secreted by the intestinal tract and can be measured in circulating blood. Motilin produces peristalsis, which is rhythmic contractions of the intestines. Therefore, dehydration may be the cause of abdominal pain, constipation, and colitis.
Dehydration also inhibits the osmotic flow of water through the cell membrane which is important because it generate ‘hydroelectric’ energy that is converted and stored in energy pools, which is necessary for all cellular processes including neurotransmission.
Another consequence of not drinking enough water is the acceleration of premature aging
How much water should we drink?
Many authorities suggest 8-10 glasses per day (2-2.5 litres), but this can vary depending on body size, amount of physical activity and types of foods eaten. If you suffer any illness, constipation or are detoxifying your body, you should increase this quantity.
What type of water should we drink?
There are many different types of drinking water which can be confusing, so I will discuss some of the different types available.
If you do not have clean water, your body will have to purify the water you drink, apart from all its other jobs. This creates an extra toxic load on the body, which means your body’s efficiency is compromised.
We need healthy water. By that I mean water that promotes good health. Water authorities across Australia can legally add up to 50 different chemicals to tap water to ‘purify’ it.
My son refused to drink water from our purifier as he thought it took too long and didn’t want to wash up his glass after use, so he drank straight from the normal tap, believing it to be fine. That was until his first day on the job as an electrician for the water board when he came home after work and I saw him drinking from the filter. When I asked him about why he changed his mind, with a horrified look he said, “Do you realise what they put into our water?” “Yes”, I smiled.
Chlorine is a chemical that is also added to our water supply for our safety, but chlorine is classified as a ‘halide’. The problem is that our body uses iodine from food to regulate the thyroid. If we are deficient in iodine, the thyroid will take up chlorine in its place as both chlorine and iodine are halides. But because the thyroid can only function on iodine and not chlorine, the thyroid is further compromised. Thus, chlorine in drinking water is not recommended.
All matter and energy has a vibration, which affects your chemistry, structure, function, electromagnetic vibration and brilliance. Today’s tap water is ‘dead water’. It’s molecular structure and ability to carry chemical elements such as oxygen and nutrients is very poor.
Any essential nutrients that may be in the water are most often locked up and bound to chemicals and debris that render them useless or of little benefit.
Let’s consider the water options available to us…
You can evaporate off chlorine and kill some micro-organisms by boiling water. However other chemicals and all the dissolved solids remain, along with endotoxins from the killed bacteria. These endotoxins can produce pyrogens, which are more harmful than the live bacteria they replace.
Raindrops form around airborne particles. Air today tends to be so polluted that rain is not a pure source of un-contaminated drinking water and more a cocktail of sulphuric acid, lead from petrol and diesel fumes, sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide and benzine derivatives from industry.
If you use tank water, there are contaminants on the roof and gutters, particularly after a dry spell. It’s best to have a diversion pipe that goes into the tank, so when it begins to rain you can swivel the first water flow from the roof onto the ground to flush out the pollutants, then swivel it back to the tank.
Spring or mineral water
The quality of water that is comes out of the ground can be quite different for individual springs. Spring or mineral water contains varying quantities of metals, salts of metals, and other substances that leach into underground basins. Aluminium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, sulphates and chlorides can be present in widely ranging amounts. Acidic water has a pH lower than 7. The pH level of one bottle I tested was 5.1 (and they bragged about it).
Non-purified water can contain a host of chemicals including chlorine, fluoride, bromide, and heaps of other chemicals used to balance the Ph of the water. Avoid water from plastic bottles as some of these leach estrogen mimicking chemicals into the water.
There are many good water treatment units on the market. My favourite is one that will alkalise, ionize and micro cluster the water.
Alkaline water can effectively neutralise acids in your body’s blood and tissues. Alkaline water is charged with negative ions which function as a potent antioxidant to scavenge free radicals in the blood and neutralise toxins which are positively charged.
Water that is micro-clustered (smaller molecular size) pass more easily into the cells and tissues of the body, hydrating the body more effectively. You may have noticed that sometimes when you have a glass of water it feels like it just goes straight through you and is not absorbing. This happens less with micro-clustered water which is absorbed more easily and offers the body hydration, mineralisation, alkalization, and detoxification.
A company I recommend for water filtration products is Alkaway, who have distribution networks worldwide (and no, I do not receive a kickback). I know the founders of the company whose integrity and passion for alkaline water products is without question.
Drink plenty of purified water