Pure and Clean Water, A Powerful Natural Medicine

by Pankaj Kotak, M.Sc., N.D.


Our bodies are at least 60% water, which makes it essential for maintaining good health. It is involved in all the bodily functions such as circulation, digestion, absorption and elimination, among others. Life cannot exist without water. Pure clean water is a universal solvent and a very effective cleanser of toxins from the body. Water helps the organs of elimination such as skin, lungs, colon, liver and kidneys in functioning effectively. If you are dehydrated, your body's elimination systems will not function properly. This will lead to accumulation of toxins and waste products in the body, which can cause acute and chronic diseases.

Our body needs at least 6 to 8 glasses (8 ounce size) of water everyday. During the summer months, this requirement goes up to 8 to 10 glasses per day. Tea, coffee, soda, alcohol, milk and processed beverages are no substitutes for water. Most of these beverages contain dehydrating agents which deplete water from the body and make you thirstier. Dehydration causes the bodily systems to function well below their optimum level. If this situation persists for a long time, it can manifest in various diseases. Scientists have discovered that a well hydrated body helps in the prevention of chronic diseases. Research has found that dehydration, even when mild, can cause impairment to many aspects of cognitive function including alertness, concentration, and short-term memory.

Tap waters usually goes through a local treatment plant which uses very old technology such as settling tanks, filtration through sand and gravel and then chemical treatment to make it safe. In most places, it is chlorinated to kill germs and fluoridated to prevent tooth decay. Fluoridation has been banned in Europe because of the harmful effect of fluoride on health. Chlorine from tap water is harmful to the health. Many European countries have started treating their water with ozone instead of chlorine. Environmental Working Group (EWG), a non-profit organization headquartered in Washington, analyzed tap water testing data from 42 states and found that it contained 141 unregulated chemicals and an additional 119 for which the Environmental Protection Agency has set health-based limits.

Bottled water is not necessarily pure either. A laboratory testing carried out for EWG at a reputed water quality laboratory in the U.S. indicated that up to ten popular brands of bottled water, picked up from retailers and stores across 9 states and the District of Columbia, were contaminated with 38 chemical pollutants, and 8 contaminants being the average present in each brand. One of the best ways to obtain pure and clean water is to use a filter. Most popular filters are carbon based or use reverse osmosis (RO) technology. Carbon based filters are cheaper and use activated carbon, granulated carbon or solid carbon blocks. Of these, the solid carbon block filters do the best filtration by removing most impurities and retaining minerals. RO based filters are expensive and provide the best filtration by virtually removing 100% of the organic material and the minerals (including heavy metals). They remove fluoride as well. Since they remove minerals which are needed by the body, they often remineralize water with calcium and magnesium.

Before buying a filter, read the manufacturer's literature carefully to find out what kind of impurities (heavy metals, organic material, chemicals, chlorine, fluoride) it can remove from water. Natural spring water is an ideal drinking water. It comes from underground springs or surface streams. It is usually filtered and bottled without any further processing. It contains minerals depending on the geographical location of the source.

References

  1. Manz F., and others. The importance of good hydration for the prevention of chronic diseases. Nutrition Reviews. 2005 Jun;63(6 Pt 2):S2-5.
  2. Ritz P., and others. The importance of good hydration for day-to-day health. Nutrition Reviews. 2005 Jun;63(6 Pt 2):S6-13.

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