Water, Nature's Thirst Quencher

Water glass with lemon

You hear it everywhere: Drink more water (H2O)-- it's good for you. But do you know why? Good quality H2O is a great elixir. our bodies can survive months or more without food but can only survive a very short time - days - without H2O. It assists our bodies in purification and working to its optimum performance.

According to Dr. Yang H. Oh, P.h.D., “The hexagonal structure  of water is the one that promotes health and increases longevity.” We now understand that the H2O in our bodies must be structured to be able to carry sufficient and correct information to the cells for proper health, and smaller, organized clusters of these structures, seems to be preferable to large clusters for optimum health.

Over half of your body is made up of H2O. It's in every cell and every tissue. Biological processes like circulation, digestion, absorption and excretion depend on nature's liquid. It forms the foundation of blood and lymph, maintains hearty muscles and young-looking skin, lubricates joints and organs and regulates body temperature. You just cannot function without it.

As you grow older, it becomes vital to pay attention to your H2O consumption. Mature persons hold less cellular water, with a loss of 10 to 15 percent of previous capacity by the age of 65. A contributing factor is the loss of thirst sensitivity. Because H2O is so important for digestion, a lack of fluid in your body might make it more difficult for you to digest food. You may suffer from cramps, bloating, gas, constipation, diverticulosis or even colon cancer. Drinking more H2O, combined with a high-fiber diet, can prevent these problems.

To combat this loss of fluids, the answer is simple. Drink more water. Six to ten glasses of pure H2O each day are necessary to enhance your body's functioning. Beyond helping your digestive system, getting enough fluids will give you fresh skin, clear eyes and shining hair. Signs of hunger may be a warning flag that your body is need of a good drink. Try consuming several glasses of H2O before diving into a snack to see if that takes care of your craving. Because fruits are largely made up of H2O, they are perfect choices for a mid-afternoon treat.

How much should I drink every day?

What else can I drink? Is it possible to drink too much?

Because H2O makes up 80 percent of your blood and brain -- and about 50 percent of the rest of your body's tissues, it is vitally important to your good health!

You can estimate how much you need by dividing your weight by two…the result is approximately the amount of H2O you should drink each day. So if you weigh 150 pounds, your body requires 75 ounces.  For every 6 ounces of caffeine or alcohol consumed, this requires you to drink an additional 10 to 12 oz. of H2O to re-hydrate you.

Water regulates the body temperature and aids the liver and kidneys in processing body toxins. It is necessary for nutrient and oxygen transport in your body, and for absorption and utilization of vitamins and minerals. If you don't drink enough, you can become constipated, dehydrated and very, very ill!

When you're exercising, make sure you drink before, during and after your activity. Although you do get H2O from foods and other fluids, we recommend drinking half your weight in ounces (150 pounds = 75 ounces). 

Since many people find it difficult to consume that much, they should drink fluids that are mostly H2O, such as hot or iced caffeine-free (not decaffeinated) teas, mineral or sparkling water mixed with a little fruit juice or a little lemon. Sorry, sodas and coffee don’t count, and the caffeine in them actually promotes dehydration.

Death by Over-Hydration??

It's difficult to drink too much, although it is possible! Drinking too much, or “overhydration,” usually only occurs in an adult whose heart, kidneys and pituitary glands are not functioning normally. A normal person would have to drink more than two gallons in one day to develop “overhydration!”

Water's Important Role on How Your Body Works

Human Health – Next to oxygen, H2O is considered to be the human body’s most important nutrient.

Unless you constantly replenish your body's fluid supply, your cells start to draw H2O from your bloodstream. As a result your blood gets sludgy, your heart works harder, and your body starts to redirect blood away from less vital areas. It will pull H2O from your muscles and leave your muscles stiff. 

And don't forget to replace fluids used up during exercise. If you're planning a winter vacation in the sun, remember that a walk on a warm day will increase your fluid requirement. Playing tennis for an hour could require anywhere from two to 10 extra glasses of liquids!

Water is vital for body temperature regulation; therefore fluid replacement is vital. During summer when the temperature increases, your body requires even more fluid to maintain it's normal body temperature. Even when there is zero intake of H2O there are always unavoidable losses.

The following are just some of the things H2O does in the body:

  • Brain is 75% water
  • Moderate dehydration can cause headaches and dizziness.
  • H2O is required for breathing
  • Regulates body temperature
  • Carries nutrients and oxygen to all cells in the body
  • Blood is about 85% water
  • Moistens oxygen for breathing
  • Protects and cushions vital organs
  • Helps to convert food into energy
  • Helps body absorb nutrients
  • Removes waste
  • Bones are 22% water
  • Muscles are 75% water
  • Lungs are are nearly 90% water
  • Cushions joints

Benefits of Good Hydration

Here are just a few you can experience...

  • Increases physical and mental alertness
  • Extra moisture of all systems
  • Increased energy
  • Mental clarity and alertness
  • Weight Loss
  • Healthier skin and nails
  • Healthier hair
  • Healthier and stronger joints
  • Stronger immune system
  • Faster recovery from illness or surgeryFaster recovery from workouts or physical activity
  • Reduced hypertension 
  • Lower cholesterol
  • Slowing the aging process (H2O is often viewed as the true Fountain of Youth!)

As you can see the health benefits from proper hydration are extensive.

On the other hand symptoms of dehydration can have a serious negative impact on your health.

If you only drink H2O when you are thirsty, you probably aren't drinking enough. That’s because our thirst mechanisms aren't usually a good indicator of when we need H2O. When you become thirsty, chances are you’re already dehydrated.

Research is confirming that water is not simply H2O – no matter how pure. The structure of water is being linked with enzyme activity, DNA function, cellular communication, and numerous other biological processes.

The battle to properly hydrate cells must be considered as the first line of defense to your health and feeling of well being.

Green water glass with ice

Cool Facts About Dehyrdration

  • 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.
  •  Lack of H2O is the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.
  • Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of H2O a day could significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.
  • A mere 2% drop in body fluids can trigger fuzz short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the computer screen or on a printed page.
  • Drinking 5 glasses daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.

H20 can be one of the easiest, least expensive and cheapest natural cures.

Ten Secrets of Staying Hydrated

  1. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink water. By the time you feel thirsty, you have probably already lost two or more cups of your total body water composition.
  2. Drink plenty throughout the day. Convenience is a must, so carry a bottle with you as you commute to work, run errands or enjoy a day at the beach. While at work, keep a bottle on your desk, or visit the office water cooler and take an H2O break rather than a coffee break.
  3. Once you start exercising, drink throughout your workout. Keep a bottle with you and take frequent H2O breaks.
  4. Don’t underestimate the amount of fluids lost from perspiration. Following a workout, you need to drink two cups for each 500 gms lost.
  5. Start and end your day with a glass of H2O. Your body dehydrates while you sleep, so drink a serving before bed and again when you wake up.
  6. Common colds and the flu frequently lead to dehydration. Keep a large bottle next to your bed so you can sip it throughout the day without having to get up.
  7. Moderately temperatured H2O is the best fluid for keeping hydrated when it’s warm outside. It is absorbed much more quickly than warm or cool fluids. It actually makes your body work harder to warm up cool H2O thus adding to your overheated body. If you’re going to be away from home or outdoors, make sure you keep a bottle close by.
  8. Make sure your children drink enough. Children need H2O to balance their intake of other beverages especially during activities. Packing bottled H2O in a child’s lunch is a healthy habit.
  9. Drink Structure H2O. It re-hydrates the cells much more efficiently than what you are currently drinking.
  10. Make sure what you are drinking is free of impurities. Even liquid from the tap can still have toxic substances. A portable filter unit is great for traveling or camping. A personal filter bottle can clean your water when you are on the go.

The bottom line is that H2O is everywhere, and it is the best friend a dieter can have. If you want to lose weight and/or get healthier, you simply must escape the H2O torture mentality and learn to embrace a healthy water-drinking lifestyle.

Personal Note: I have seen major changes in my body when I get hydrated. Some of these seem unlikely but here we go.

I eat less. I guess I am one of those people who mistake thirst for hunger. I sleep better. I was starting to get insomnia. I could fall asleep but I would wake up in the middle of the night or not sleep deep enough and still felt tired in the morning. Drinking H2O helped me sleep better.

I was starting to get acid reflux. I would wake in the middle of the night with the acid taste in my throat. I increased my liquids and it went away.

I had digestive disturbances and would have diarrhea and my stomach did not want to settle. Adding H2O got me back to normal.

I had a painful neck pain because my shoulder muscles would get so tight. I added more liquids, the tightness decreased and so did the pain.

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