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Are You Taking Enough Water With Your Vitamins?

Aug 17, 2007
Have you read those instructions on your vitamin bottle that says take with a full glass of water?

Few people realize that an average sized person requires about three quarts of water daily. Water is important because it's the main transport media of the body. It delivers nutrients to all the cells. Water is also necessary for digestion. Water helps to absorb, assimilate and eliminate. Some amazing facts about water are:

-- Your body is about 60 percent water.
-- Your muscles are about 75 percent water.
-- Your brain is about 75 percent water.
-- Your blood is about 82 percent water.
-- Your bones are approximately 25 percent water.

You can visualize how much water the average person should drink by thinking of a one-gallon container of milk. Imagine it three-quarters full. That's how much water their body needs every day. Yet most people don't even drink one cup of water a day, let alone three quarts. You can determine how much water you need by dividing your body weight by 2. This gives you the amount of water you need in ounces. A two hundred pound man needs 100 ounces of water daily: 200 divided by 2 equals 100 ounces.

The good news is that you get about one quart from the food you eat provided you eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. The other two quarts need to be consumed daily. However, if your main food sources are starchy processed foods, cooked meats and fats, you will need to consume more because these foods contain very little water.

The Body's Cry For Help

An adequate supply of water is critical. Every function of your body is related to the flow of blood carrying nutrients, hormones and other elements to your tissues. The nutrients go first to the vital organs: your brain, heart, kidneys, liver and lungs.

A shortage of water intake will cause loss of water volume in the cells. This affects the efficiency of delivery of nutrients and excretion of waste products. The result is a deficiency of nutrients in the cells and a build up of waste in those same cells.

When chronic dehydration occurs, the body cries out for help. The symptoms may be detected by a doctor who instead of treating the patient with water, writes out a prescription for the symptoms. You, the patient, rush out to the pharmacy. The medicine then turns off your "signal for help" and temporarily delays your body's cry for water. This is short lived and the cycle is repeated. Then, another symptom appears and you get a pill for that. If this continues, over time, your kidneys may not function properly and you find yourself having to take these drugs.

Water -- The Vital Connection

The essential connection between water and good health can be well illustrated by examining six common heath problems.

1. ARTHRITIS
Sooner or later almost everyone is affected by neck or back pain or by arthritis.

Neck or back pain can be caused by discs wearing out because of insufficient fluid within the disc. Our spine has discs between the vertebra made up of a fibrous material called anulus fibrosus. This is filled with a jelly-like substance called nucleus pulposus. This nucleus pulposus (the fluid inside the disc) supports as much as 75 percent of our upper body weight. The anulus fibrosus supports only 25% of our upper body weight. Thus, when our discs become dehydrated they are more likely to herniate and progress to degenerative disc disease or arthritis.

If you stay in a state of dehydration over a extended period of time, you're headed for trouble. It's kind of like driving on an almost flat tire. It will wear faster and eventually blow out.

The material between bones is a smooth material called cartilage. It provides a smooth surface that allows the joints to glide easily during movement. It's very slick, about five times slicker than ice, and is 80 percent water. Well hydrated cartilage ensures minimal frictional forces and allows the joints to remain healthy. Dehydrated cartilage has increased frictional forces which results in more damage to the cartilage and leads to arthritis.

Drinking two quarts of water every day is preventative medicine to avoid arthritic conditions.

2. HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
We previously discussed that the body rations water to ensure it is received first by the vital organs (brain, heart, kidneys, liver and lungs). When that occurs, water flow to other areas of the body may be constricted to pump blood to these vital organs first. This may eventually cause the arteries to become constricted, increasing your blood pressure.

This is similar to constricting a water hose. This actually increases the water pressure. Arteries behave in the same way. Simply by increasing your intake of water, you can help open up your arteries, preventing a rise in blood pressure. People with high blood pressure are given drugs to open up or dilate these vital conduits. Water may be the best and most overlooked treatment.

When high blood pressure is detected early enough, drinking two to three quarts of water a day reduce the pressure to normal.

If the disease progresses to the point of causing kidney damage, drinking two to three quarts of water a day may cause edema, which is swelling. It is very important to begin this process early to avoid dependency on drugs.

3. HIATAL HERNIAS
Some doctors have noticed that their women patients almost always develop a hiatal hernia between seven and nine months into their pregnancy. This happened because the growing baby caused the uterus to push against the stomach. When the women would lie down, stomach acid would run up, and they would experience heartburn, indigestion and hiatial hernia symptoms, After they delivered the baby, all the symptoms would usually disappear.

Many middle aged men and women look as though they are nine months pregnant because of excess weight they are carrying. Their stomachs are being pushed up through their diaphragm producing hiatal hernias. These are caused by the weight and increased pressure.

The two best treatments for this condition are meeting your daily water-intake needs and following a weight-loss program. It is important, however, to not drink water for three to four hous prior to bedtime because acid reflux disease is commonly associated with a hiatal hernia. Water taken to close to bedtime may reflux up and cause heartburn.

4. ULCERS
This seems to be a best kept secret. Few people realize that maintaining a proper body water level can greatly relieve ulcer disease.

A person not drinking the required two quarts of water daily is living in a water-deficit condition. Remember the body's rationing program which delivers precious water to vital organs. When this rationing is going on, there may not be enough left to rehydrate the mucous layer (which is 98 percent water) in the stomach. This mucous layer protects us against stomach acid. The mucous also contains bicarbonate which neutralizes the stomach acid. When plenty of water is consumed, the mucous layer becomes much thicker and prevents the acid from burning the stomach lining.

It's water, not expensive drugs, that provides lasting relief from ulcers. It has now been proven that most ulcers are caused by bacteria called Helicobacter pylori. Low gastric acid output encourages the growth of this bacteria. Most ulcer medications reduce or neutralize hydrochloric acid, thus encouraging the growth of the bacteria and setting up a vicious cycle.

5. ASTHMA
Can water help reduce the effects of asthma? Yes, it surely can. The bronchial tubes need water to provide moisture in order to prevent constriction.

Asthmatics usually have an elevated histamine level. Histamine is a neurotransmitter that triggers contraction of muscles in the bronchial tubes and symptoms of asthma. Animal studies have shown that as water intake increases, histamine production decreases. Water is also an excellent treatment for allergies since they are also usually associated with elevated histamine levels.

Elevated histamine causes itchy eyes, nasal draining and other allergic symptoms.

6. ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE
Remember, your brain is 75 - 80 percent water. Think about your brain and then think about a plum. Without water, a plum shrinks and becomes like a prune. In the brain, cells may become dehydrated due to lack of water intake. Without sufficient water, the brain may not obtain nourishment, and it may not properly eliminate waste materials. Many doctors believe long-term dehydration by contribute to Alzheimer's disease. Do you see why you should never allow your brain to become dehydrated?

Here's Where You Begin

Are you ready to start drinking two quarts of water every day?

-- Your skin will look fresher.
-- Your mind will function more clearly.
-- It will aid in the elimination of waste.
-- It will improve circulation.
-- It will help prevent numerous degenerative diseases.

Intentionally drinking water day after day will eventually become a habit. In time, you will look at a cup of coffee, a soft drink or a cup of tea and ask for water instead. Your body yearns for pure clean water. So, do drink properly purified drinking water.

To ensure good health, invest in a high quality water purifier. Because good health starts with pure water!
About the Author
Tom Nuckels is health article author and owner of the LpVitamins.com website. His customers range from children to the elderly and from carpenters to doctors. To learn what liquid vitamins and phytonutrients can do for you, visit www.lpvitamins.com .
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