Most of us have heard it time and time again, from any number of sources... "You should consume eight glasses of water every day." Where does this recommendation come from? And why?
The human body on average is over 70% water. Other vital organs and systems have an even higher concentration: the brain is over 75%, the blood over 80%, and the liver is an amazing 96% water. To a large degree, we are what we drink.
To understand the importance of water in the body, one needs to first understand that water (H2O) plays a role in nearly every chemical reaction in the body. Aside from aiding in digestion and absorption of food, water regulates body temperature and blood circulation, carries nutrients to cells, and removes toxins and other wastes. Water also cushions joints and protects tissues and organs, including the spinal cord, from shock and damage. When water is pure enough, it also acts as an electronegative enhancer (described more fully in our article on detoxification.) Conversely, lack of water (dehydration) can be the cause of many ailments. Chronic dehydration may cause or aggravate many problems in the body, including hypertension, asthma, allergies, and migraine headaches, to name just a few.
It is estimated that over 80% of our population suffers energy loss due to minor dehydration. Our energy level is greatly affected by the amount of water we drink. It has been medically proven that a drop of as little as 5% in body fluids will cause a 25% to 30% loss of energy in the average person... a 15% drop in body fluids causes death! Water is what our liver uses to metabolize fat into useable energy. Drinking more pure, healthy water will help metabolize and shed stored fat resulting in more energy and less fat.
All day, every day we lose this precious liquid from our bodies. When we breathe, we lose moisture to the air every time we exhale—as much as two cups a day. Furthermore, our bodies lose water through evaporation from the surface of our skin even without rigorous exercise, and of course we also pass water in our urine. During the course of an average day, a healthy adult can lose eight to 10 cups of water. Add exercise, and this number rises considerably. Many drinks like soda, coffee, and tea contain caffeine, which has a diuretic effect leading to increased loss of fluids through frequent urination.
The function of every cell in our body is controlled by electrical signals sent through our nervous system from the brain. Our nerves, in reality, are an elaborate system of tiny waterways. If the fluid inside our nerves thickens due to dehydration, or is contaminated with synthetic chemicals or toxic heavy metals like lead, the vital signals can get distorted. Many experts now believe that the distortion of these signals may be the root cause of many degenerative diseases and neurological illnesses including Attention Deficit Disorder, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, anxiety, depression, and even Alzheimer’s disease.
Considering the major role that water plays in the function of our brain and nervous system, its purity is possibly the most basic and essential key to healthy longevity. Proper digestion and nutrient absorption depend on healthy intake of water. In order for our body to get the nutritional value from our foods and supplements, we must consume plenty of pure water. Since sugars and carbohydrates are absorbed more rapidly, even a slight degree of dehydration can have a big impact on the amount of nutrition we derive from the foods we eat.
Detoxification is probably the single most important component to long-term health... and one that relies almost exclusively on an adequate intake of pure water. Water is our body’s primary means of flushing out toxins; the key to disease prevention. In our industrialized “chemical society” we are exposed to literally hundreds of harmful substances daily. Our air, our foods, and everything we touch... contain traces of harmful chemicals. Unfortunately we can’t keep toxins from getting into our body, but we can help our body to get rid of them by drinking plenty of pure water. The more pure water we drink... the more we allow our body to purify itself.
The quality of the water we drink is equally as important as the amount. If water already contains chlorine and other chemical contaminants it has less ability to carry toxins out of our body. If we consume water containing traces of synthetic chemicals, we force our liver and kidneys to be the filter, ultimately damaging or destroying two of our most vital organs. With an abundant intake of pure, healthy water we allow our body to perform all the healing processes that it is naturally capable of.