“I’m dying of thirst!”
Well, we just might. It sounds so simple. H2O: two parts hydrogen, one part oxygen. This element – water – is the most essential for our survival, next to air.
Water makes up more than two thirds of the weight of the human body, and without it, we’d all die in a few days. The human brain is made up of 95% water, blood is 82% water, and lungs 90%.
Water, water, everywhere
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. (If you’re having trouble reading this, then drink up!) Mild dehydration is also one of the most common causes of daytime fatigue.
Water is extremely important to the mechanics of the human body. The body cannot work without it, just as a car cannot run without fuel. In fact, life, all the cell and organ functions that drive our entire anatomy and physiology, or even evolution for that matter, all depend on water.
But matters don’t end there. According to Danica Collins of Underground Health Reporter, “Drinking water in the morning immediately upon waking up can have amazing therapeutic effects for a multitude of health conditions, ranging from pain to asthma to cancer.”
Water therapy originates from ancient Ayurvedic medicine. In Sanskrit, the name for the practice is Usha Paana Chikitsa, which translates roughly to “early morning water treatment.” This form of water therapy, advocated by alternative medicine proponents, helps cleanse the bowels. This is achieved through the production of new blood, or Haematopaises. This fresh blood has a restorative effect on the body, and can even cure existing ailments.
A litre to a litre-and-a-half is the common amount ingested. This type of water therapy is claimed to have a wide range of health benefits, and no adverse effects.
The accidental prison discovery
This story revolves around the late physician, Dr. Fereydoon Batmanghelidj, who claimed that he discovered the medicinal value of water while treating peptic ulcers.
It was during the time he was serving a jail sentence as a political prisoner in Iran, when he used the only medicine available to him – which was water – to successfully treat 3,000 fellow prisoners who were suffering from stress-induced peptic ulcers.
After his release from prison, Dr. Batmanghelidj turned his full-time attention to the study of dehydration and its negative health effects. His subsequent discoveries have been said to have restored health for hundreds of thousands of individuals who were suffering from unidentified dehydration-related diseases.
In addition to presenting at international and world conferences, he published his findings in a number of scientific journals. He has compiled his research for the general public in two books: Your Body’s Many Cries for Water, and How to Deal with Back Pain and Rheumatoid Joint Pain.
He stated that if we treat the root cause of dehydration, we can avoid costly and unnecessary medical interventions and enjoy long-term wellbeing.
“Humans seem to lose their thirst sensation and the critical perception of needing water,” wrote Batmanghelidj in one of his two books on chronic dehydration and water therapy. “Not recognising their need for water,” he continued, “they gradually become increasingly and chronically dehydrated with the progress of age.”
Further confusion results when the body produces complicated secondary symptoms of dehydration. “Many doctors misinterpret those secondary symptoms as unrelated diseases,” he wrote.
But all that being said, similar to Ambrosia (the immortal drink/elixir of life), if over-consumed, even water can kill you. Excessive consumption of water can lead to water intoxication, also known as water poisoning. It is a potentially fatal disturbance in brain function that occurs when the normal balance of electrolytes in the body is pushed outside safe limits by overhydrating. It is an urgent and dangerous medical condition.
Always remember, moderation is the key. Now go ahead and treat yourself with a glass of water right away!
pic courtsey: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aquamech-utah/25072097425