Did you know that thirst is the final indicator of dehydration? Not only that, but the thirst sensation deteriorates with age, so the more chronically dehydrated one becomes, the thirst mechanisms further decreases, and is one of the primary causes of rapid visible aging. There is no reason that organs and joints should not be fully operational through the end of one’s life. It has become culturally accepted that this body deterioration is inevitable with age, but all things being equal for healthy environmental factors, those who are sufficiently hydrated will enjoy much more mobility and be significantly more free of aches, pains and debilitating disease through the very end of one’s life.
The body is comprised of 75% water, and brain is comprised of 85% water. Organs and joints and bones and muscles are all made of up cells, and each cell requires water to carry out its basic functions:
- All chemical reactions are dependent on water
- Water flowing through the cell membranes creates necessary energy for the body
- Forms an adhesive to maintain the cell’s shape
- Proteins, enzymes and all receptors of cell membranes function more efficiently in a watery state (versus a sludge medium)
- Serves as the medium for all communication to trigger life sustaining reactions of neurotransmitters and hormones etc, and do not work in sludge.
- Is the base for many life sustaining secretions by cells that are triggered by the above neurotransmitters and hormones
The body has preservation systems based on a hierarchy of need, and when there is not sufficient water for everything to work properly, histamine regulates where the water gets distributed. Histamine’s mere presence causes one to experience pain where it is triggered. When histamine is present and pain is occurring, acid builds up. Water is needed in the short term to wash the acid away, and in the long term to not trigger the histamine. One can see easily how organs and joints lower on the water distribution totem pole will not get water distributed to them in a drought and how chronic pain in these “lower” organs will manifest.
So “How much water should I drink?”, you may ask. Take your body weight in pounds, cut that number in half, and that’s how many ounces you need to drink each day just to maintain health. And for every ounce of a diuretic (like coffee, alcohol etc), you need to take half of those ounces and add it to your baseline number. So for example, if you weigh 120lbs, your baseline will be to drink 60 oz each day. But if you drink 8oz of coffee, you’ll need to add another 4 oz to your baseline and drink a total of 64oz of water that day. *And be sure to avoid water from plastic bottles, to avoid BPA leaching into your water!
Medical practitioners are not aware of the many chemical roles of water in the body, as there has not been an incentive for anyone to fund such studies. Dehydration causes the loss of many functions, and when there is lasting and severe dehydration, practitioners diagnose the dehydration indicators as an independent disease and treat with unnatural chemical medications (which in order to process these chemicals, further dehydrates and depletes the body’s mineral reserves), rather than treating with simple water. Also, since water is one’s primary source of said minerals, with dehydration comes an associated lack of minerals in the body to handle the unnecessary medications. Here is a snapshot of the many diagnosable diseases that may develop as a result of chronic dehydration:
“The primary cause of Alzheimer’s disease is chronic dehydration of the body.” When there is so little water over time that even the brain – which is at the top of the totem pole – does not get sufficient water, the brain cells shrink. When cells shrink and become pruned, the transport system that delivers messages to the nerve endings get lost. (On a side note, aluminum toxicity is the secondary cause of Alzheimer’s which is present in large quantities in medications…. so the combination of dehydration causing symptoms that are treated with an abundance of medications is a perfect recipe for Alzheimer’s to manifest).
Rheumatoid Arthritis Pains
In order to prevent bones grinding against each other with movement, cartilage is needed to allow bones to glide over each other. Cartilage is composed primarily of water, and so when there is too little water, the bones grind down the cartilage until eventually there is none left in certain areas, and the very painful and irreversible osteoarthritis eventually develops. Until the cartilage is completely gone however, water, nutrients and minerals can help build the cartilage back up, though cartilage hydration is very low on the totem pole, so enough water must be consumed such that histamine does not divert it away. Water will also keep the blood less sludgy, which helps it circulate more efficiently in the repair and rebuilding phase (and of course the maintenance too)!
Low Back Pain
The lower spine holds 75% of the weight of the upper body. That weight is not supported by bone on bone, but in the spaces around the lower vertebrae, which is the water cushion in the disc core. When there is not enough water to get to this lower totem pole location, one first needs to drink water, but secondly to do a series of exercises to to draw water into the disc core to treat and prevent further sciatic pain. *See video: How to Deal with Back Pain, by Batmanghelidj,
Being frozen or with little movement in a position with the neck tilted forward from the chronic use of too many pillows or regularly sitting for a long time in front of a computer can displace the invertebral discs around the neck. Circulating fluid is needed to maintain the integrity of the discs in proper positioning, and when the fluid is blocked, the discs can make micro movements, so when this same positioning occurs regularly, over time the discs can travel quite a distance to cause chronic pain. Water is also needed for the fluid that keeps the properly positioned neck in place!
Caused in the short term by acute dehydration, when one has a headache it is a code blue signal that the brain cannot carry out its basic functions (since the brain is the highest on the totem pole, when you have a headache, that is 911 call to drink sufficiently replenishing water IMMEDIATELY). Water will also help dilate the blood sludge to help quickly get oxygen to the brain where it is acutely needed. *Please note that sufficient water must be consumed, not just an 8 oz glass, as a headache means that the body is severely dehydrated and basic body functions have already shut down to the point that the brain – at the top – is sending out an emergency call.