I’m not really sure what that title’s about. “Bill and Ted go to Dune” maybe? Anyway, it’s a sad fact that although my secret sci-fi fantasies would have me doing battle alongside Fremen warriors on the great sands of the desert planet, the truth about the inhabitants of such a place would be far off from the super humans described in Frank Herbert’s novel. That level of water depletion would more likely create a population of frail, sickly, lethargic and unintelligent people.
Ok, so now that I’ve given away my super geek-ness what’s all this about? Well, it’s all about water—the giver and preserver of life. If it weren’t for the existence of this wondrous compound of hydrogen and oxygen none of us, and in fact nothing we know of life would exist. Over 75 percent of our body is composed of this stuff and to maintain proper hydration it’s estimated that we need about 10 cups a day (approx. 1 milliliter for each calorie of food). Some doctors claim we need much more than that and although I wrote an article showing evidence that the 8 glass a day necessity was a myth, there’s no doubt that there’s a lot more to dehydration than dry mouth. When water consumption is inadequate, certain body systems steal from others to protect different tissues and organs, which results in pain, tissue damage, and variety of many other health problems. One physician even claims drinking more water can be helpful in curing everything from headaches and depression to asthma and arthritis.
Pure water is essential for the digestion of food and for its transport to the tissues, for the elimination of body wastes, for the circulation of body fluids (like blood and lymph), for a lubricant in the joints and internal organs and for the regulation of body temperature. Water is part of the blood system holding dissolved minerals, like calcium and magnesium in solution, making them available to body tissues where they are required for proper health and when it is plentiful, blood viscosity, joint cartilage, blood capillaries, digestion, the ATP energy system and the spinal column, all work in an efficient, easy manner.
So what about the quality of water we put into our bodies? Here’s where it gets interesting. If you’re feeling comfortable drinking straight from the tap, think about this. Average city water today contains over 500 chemicals that do not belong in it. In the United States, over 2100 organic and inorganic contaminants have been identified in drinking water supplies since 1974. 190 of these contaminants have confirmed adverse health effects, whether carcinogens, mutagens, teratogens or toxic. 75 percent of drinking water in the U.S. is chlorinated and although chlorination has been essential in helping to reduce the incidence of infectious diseases, known carcinogens, such as chloroform and trihalomethanes, are formed when chlorine reacts with organic compounds in the water. Room doesn’t allow but trust me when I say that the above just scratches the surface of the information available and I encourage everyone to look into it and make their own decisions.
Now I’m not a conspiracy theorist and I don’t think the EPA has failed us (I mean Peru discontinued chlorination and caused a cholera epidemic for God’s sake) but there’s enough evidence in my opinion to warrant some serious safety precautions. Many people are going so far as to use chlorine filtering shower heads but in the least I believe it’s essential to drink purified water. Frighteningly, many studies have shown that most bottled water isn’t much better than what you get from the tap so do it yourself. There are many options available and when you consider the benefits, it’s a no brainer.
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