Rinse Cycle

Posted on April 25, 2011 by

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Sheri Lynn

My daughter-in-law is 7 months pregnant.  2 weeks ago she went to the hospital with belly cramping and the doctor found she was in labor.  With 2 months to go with her pregnancy the doctor wanted to stop labor.  How did he do it?  By hydrating her!  Simply hydrating her body stopped the early labor.

After oxygen, water is your highest priority for attaining (and maintaining) health. Why? It’s quite simple; your body is over 70% water. Your brain is over 85% water. So it makes sense that it’s almost impossible to drink too much water – pure water. Staying hydrated is absolutely crucial for optimum brain function and optimum health, and is vital for slowing aging.

Water is accountable for a multitude of physiological processes, including the regulation of body temperature, metabolizing fat, lubrication of joints, blood flow, blood pressure regulation, digestion, and elimination.  Water is in charge of nutrient transportation on a cellular level.

Water is critical to the metabolism of stored fat.  Water assists the liver’s ability to process stored fat for physical fuel – it takes 2.5 grams of water for 1 gram of glycogen (derived from the carbohydrates that you eat) to be utilized by the muscle tissue for fuel.  This is important for muscular regeneration and growth, as well as ensuring that when losing weight the body burns fat instead of lean tissue (muscle).

Muscle retains more water than fat and so the leaner the body, the higher the need for water.  The more you move that lean body around, the increased need for more water.  Lance Armstrong – cancer survivor and Tour De France athlete – puts the effect of dehydration in perspective: “Even being 1% dehydrated is absolutely devastating to performance.”

Your brain is the highest maintenance organ in your body and the organ most devastated by dehydration.  Did you know that the number one cause of memory loss at any age is dehydration?  A study involving student athletes by Tufts University found that dehydration results in depression, anger, and a generally negative mood.  A clinical psychiatrist for the Mayo Clinic states that adequate hydration is part of a nutritional treatment for anxiety and mood stabilization.

I know this information begs the question “How much water and what kind?”  The general rule is your body weight (in pounds) divided by two.  This is the minimum amount of water in ounces you should consume every day.  MINIMUM.  For times of physical change (healing, fat loss, recovery) I find that for most people about 128 ounces of water/day is about right.  You can play with it and see what works for you. 

What kind of water? The National Science Foundation says that distilled water is the purest water.  Next is filtered water, and reverse osmosis is known to be the best filtered water.  However, it’s important to understand that tap water is better than no water! Just as a washing machine needs water to clean your clothes, your body requires water to clean your insides. The quality of the water is not always as important as quantity. Tap water is also significantly better than any type of soda, fruit drink, iced tea, coffee or alcohol when it comes to hydration. 

Posted in: Food For Thought