Water: To Drink or Not To Drink
Drinking Water has been undergoing a lot of scrutiny lately. How much should you drink? Should you drink any at all? What benefits does it have…if any? Well, I am here to tell you how I determine what is the proper amount of water to drink.
First, lets leave all the hoopla around water alone for now. Lets just look at the human body. There are certain facts we know about water in the body.
- 1. The body is made up of 70% water.
- 2. The blood is 75% water.
- 3. Your Brain is 75-85% water.
- 4. Water aids digestion by producing saliva, the first stage of carb digestion.
- 5. Drinking 500ml of water can increase your metabolic rate by 30%.
- 6. Dehydration is defined as a 1% or greater loss of body weight due to fluid loss.
- 7. A 10% or more loss of body weight due to fluid loss can become life threatening.
- 8. When dehydrated your attention and concentration can decrease by 13%.
- 9. Short term memory can decrease by 7%.
Those are just a few facts about water in the body. We also know that water is essential for proper kidney function of filtering your blood and excreting waste products in the urine. The kidneys also help control blood pressure.
In the blood, water is necessary for cellular structure and transporting oxygen through the blood stream. Without adequate hydration the red blood cells loose their shape, like a deflated balloon and therefore cannot function optimally.
Our bodies are electrical in nature, the ELECTROLYTES, are carried in the fluids of the body, both blood and lymph. The more water that is available, the more freely the electrolytes can move around the body. Our heart is dependent upon these electrolytes to function, just ask your cardiologist!
Your large intestine is dependent upon water to saturate the fiber to form the solid waste of the body. If you don't believe me don't drink water for a few days and then drink some and see what changes occur in the bowel movements. Water also helps dilute the urine. A good indicator of dehydration is dark-colored urine or decreased urine output.
Okay, so you say, Doc this is all fine and good, I understand that these are the facts, so why is there so much discrepancy over drinking water or not? Well let me explain what I tell my patients.
First off, we have to use common sense. If we look at the physiology books, water is used in all functions of the body. It just makes sense that if we run low in water—like low water in your radiator of your car—we will run "hot" just like an overheating care. I mean that we will run at a less than optimal level. Does that make sense to you?
The experts agree with one fact, there isn't enough evidence to support how much water to drink. I can tell you, in my office we can test your body composition and tell you how much water is inside and outside your cells. Most people who drink lots of coffee, soda, tea and other non-water drinks tend towards a decrease in the intracellular fluid. That is why that those beverages don't contribute to your water demands for the day. Even though they have water in them they require digestion so they are processed like a food.
I recommend that people drink 1/2 their body weight in ounces of water every day. That means that if you weigh 120 lbs. you need 60 oz. of water per day (which is less than the recommended 8 glasses). This amount varies on where you live, your activity level, diet and stress level, but it is a good starting point.
I have lived on both sides of this dilemma, drinking soda throughout the day with no water, to drinking my recommended amount and the way I feel is so dramatically different, you couldn't get me to go back.
So you can listen to the "experts"(including me) or you can use the brain that our creator gave you and see what makes sense to you. I encourage you to take the test though, try drinking 1/2 your body weight in ounces for 2 weeks and see how you FEEL.
About the author
Dr. David Trybus is certified in Enzyme Therapy, and utilizes many types of nutritional therapies such as homeopathy, herbal, and glandular therapy and essential oil therapy amongst others in the clinic. I utilize state of the art testing to help with the diagnosing process.At the Alternative Healthcare Center, we care for a wide range of people - those who are in severe pain to those who want to achieve an optimum level of wellness in their life.
You can read his blog at http://www.letstalkgettinghealthy.com/