We have all heard the common wisdom is “drink 8 glasses of water a day.” More universal is “get plenty of fluids.” In fact, having enough water is one of the 12 essential practices of Optimal Healing. I’m often surprised by how common it is not to get enough liquids. How many folks don’t drink that extra glass of water during a long airline flight? Or how easy it is to think of juice or beer as liquid when it might be better to call them liquid foods; they certainly have enough calories. Keep in mind that our focus is on simple practices we can reach for that facilitate and speed up healing. Drinking enough water most definitely make a difference.
Often the quality of water is discussed in integrative circles, and indeed, poor water quality is a large determinant of health in the sense that without clean potable water, folks are more likely to get infectious illnesses. Assuming that our readers are likely to get clean drinking water, let’s look at water quantity first. Dr. Rashid Buttar, author of “The 9 Steps to Keep Doctor Away,” discusses water in step six. Why is water so important? A few facts. Water is the most common substance in the body. Newborn infants are close to % 75 water, while the average adult male is closer to % 65 water. Muscle tissue has upwards of % 75 water while fat cells are only % 10. Water is in most everything in our body at different concentrations. It is in between or rather “interstitial” too. It is no surprise that drinking water helps maintain the balance of fluids in our bodies.
Other not so obvious facts are that water helps control calories, filling us up with a no calorie substance. Water energizes our muscles by helping maintain electrolyte balance and eliminating waste. Water is good for our skin which loves to be hydrated. Water keeps our kidneys working better, and our bowel system as well. All three systems of elimination—sweat, urine and feces required plenty of water. As an Optimal Healing tool, consider upping your intake of plain water for kidney infections, constipation, stomach and bowel issues, skin conditions, or even hangovers! Water might also be a useful cold and flu remedy helping with reduce congestion and re-hydration. One study found that water helps students get better grades. Certainly recovery from over-exertion, muscle injuries, and fatigue in general could use the benefits of the H2O flush.
So how much is enough of this easy access stuff? It seems rather obvious that the amount should be related to one’s body size and weight. Dr. Buttar believes that we need to drink at least % 50 of our weight in ounces. For example: I weigh 250 lbs, I need to drink 125 ounces daily (32 ounces is a quart, so 4 quarts is 128 ounces.) I will need to drink a gallon of water a day! Sounds like a lot, well it is, but I am 6’ 6” tall. According to Dr. Buttar, it will take about 2 weeks for one to get used to drinking that much, because our bodies have grown accustomed to not having enough water. After that, all sorts of positive health benefits will begin.
Just what kind of water should one drink? In an ideal and affluent world, a super high quality water filter hooked up to your kitchen faucet. If this is true, it is likely worth the investment of $500-$1000. But to keep it simple, if water really helps one eliminate chemicals and substances from our bodies, the less that is in the water the better. So spring water that is really from a spring is great. Distilled is OK. And for many, who live where there is just good water from the ground, or the municipal water is from the mountains, this will do, though municipal water usually has chlorine and fluorine added. The bottom line for today is getting enough!
Consider taking the 30 day challenge! Starting on Saturday November 15, in preparation of the winter holidays, join us in the 30 Day Healing Water Challenge-– commit to 30 days of getting enough water- 50% of your body weight in ounces. The prize? Let’s find out, Optimal Healing comes in many forms. I think you’ll be pleased with this low cost challenge. If you find it makes no difference for your health, then you can always just return to how much you are drinking and never worry. In the meantime join me on Facebook.