Hazel Courteney - waterARE YOU DRINKING ENOUGH WATER?

You might think this is a silly question, but Government statistics show that only 5% of us drink the recommended 6 to 8 glasses of water daily.

At birth, your body was made up of around 75% water – hence why healthy babies have such smooth, plump, hydrated skin and sparkling eyes. But unfortunately we then we start eating and drinking and over decades, the average person ingests hundreds of kilos of herbicides, pesticides and additives from foods – plus antibiotic and hormone residues from the pill and HRT, heavy metals such as aluminium and lead, and a chemical cocktail that includes fluoride and chlorine – all from municipal tap water. Over time, these toxins can accumulate in our bodies, eventually clogging up our cells, reducing their ability to absorb water and eliminate toxins. Your body siphons any water it needs into the colon, and if there is insufficient, waste matter becomes hard and dry, triggering constipation, which stores even more toxins in the body.

Even worse, the liver’s ability to metabolize stored fats into usable energy is reduced, so you store more fat. In addition your joints and cartilage are dependant on water for optimum functioning. And without sufficient water your skin also begins to dehydrate and wrinkles appear. Need I say more? I trust by now you are drinking a large glass of water as you read – and have realised that most chronic, degenerative diseases could be prevented or healed if we could all make the effort to drink more water.

BUT WHICH TYPE IS BEST?

Dr John McKenna, a nutritional physician based in London and Ireland, who has studied water in many countries says ‘ Most people believe that bottled water is safer than tap water, but it depends on your definition of safe. The majority of tap waters are safe from a microbiological standpoint, in that chemicals like chlorine kill harmful organisms before we drink it, but once inside the body chlorine destroys the healthy bacteria in our guts which are vital for immune function. And certain bottled waters are no better than tap water, you can often taste the impurities. ’

He recommends that we look for natural, mature spring waters that are bottled at source and low in minerals (see below). This is because minerals such as calcium and magnesium (which are vital for good health) found in the majority of waters, bottled or tap, are mostly in an inorganic form, which are not easy for the body to utilise. However, once water in the soil is absorbed into fruits, vegetables and grains, the minerals are then converted to an organic, easy to absorb form. This is why fresh juices often quench your thirst more efficiently than polluted or heavily mineralised waters. Fresh foods are also rich in live enzymes, plus vitamins and minerals which help transport their water content across cell membranes. Try drinking a glass of fresh watermelon juice which is 90% water – and notice how well this quenches your thirst- and as watermelon is packed with natural source carotenes and organic minerals – they are also great for your skin.

Kangen Water

There is also a type of water system available from Japan, which has been demonstrated via numerous hospital studies to have highly beneficial health effects as this type of water can help to alkalise, detoxify and hydrate the body. For further details you can either log on to www.kangenmiraclewater.co.uk or call the Dr Shamin Daya at the Wholistic Medical Centre on  0207 580 7537  0207 580 7537 or email her atinfo@wholisticmedical.co.uk

FILTERED OR BOTTLED?

After a lot of research into ‘which’ water to use, I now use both a Reverse Osmosis De -Ionized water filtration system  and the Kangen water system, in my home, which I mix and match! RODI water, is passed through microscopic filters and then through a resin which attracts any remaining impurities – that leaves 99.999 % pure H2O, like the natural rain water (with zero sodium) that fell through an unpolluted atmosphere eons ago.For more details and stockists call Pure H2O on 01784 221188.

But if you drink nothing but RODI water – then I suggest you take a multi-mineral capsule or liquid form daily in a chelated form (easy to absorb) – as this water is so pure it contains NO minerals. Several experts I spoke to whilst researching this piece, recommended Spa or Volvic Water as being pure.

But, my favourite bottled water comes from the island of Fiji, where the ancient volcanic rocks have created the perfect filtration system for this pure water, rich in the mineral silica – vital for healthy bones, hair, skin and nails. It’s bottled at source, and the minerals are in a colloidal form – which makes them easier for us to absorb. Fiji water, is the number one bottled water in health stores in America and is favoured by stars such as Halle Berry and Pierce Brosnan. This water helps to re-alkalise the body, has non detectable levels of nitrates and tastes squeaky clean. Available from most department stores and many supermarkets.

AND WHAT ABOUT JUG TYPE FILTERS?

Roger Wiltshire, an independent water consultant says’ Most jug type filters remove some of the chemicals, but have a very limited capacity to remove impurities such as heavy metals. Viruses, plus hormone residues from HRT and the Pill will still get through. Also it’s important that filter jugs are kept clean and filters changed regularly – otherwise they harbor more bacteria than they remove’.

 

WATER FACTS

The colour of your urine is a great indicator of whether you are drinking sufficient water. If it is a strong coloured, darkish yellow – you need to drink more. When you are hydrated your urine should be a light , white wine-pale straw colour. B vitamins turn your urine a bright yellow/orange colour – but this is normal.

Try and drink approximately two litres of water daily and more if you are doing strenuous exercise. Avoid drinking too much water with meals, as it dilutes the stomach acid that you need to help digest your food. Proteins such as meat and fish require adequate water to break down the protein – so if you eat lots of protein you will need more water. If you eat 4 pieces of fruit and 4 servings of vegetables a day – this provides almost a litre of water. Fruit and vegetables also alkalise the body. Tomatoes and lettuce are 95% water. Melons, oranges, broccoli and carrots are 90% water. Yoghurt, apples, pears and berries are 85 % water. Bananas and sweet corn are 75% water. Long grain rice, potatoes and white fish are 70% water. If you constantly drink too little, your body perceives the shortage as a threat to survival and begins retaining water. Water reserves are stored in the spaces outside the cells which can trigger swollen hands and feet. Nutritionist, Jayne Tancred adds ‘ Fluid retention can also be triggered by heart problems, hormonal imbalances and nutrient deficiencies – especially vitamin B6, so if someone is drinking adequate water and still suffers water retention, further investigations are required’ Caffeine triggers water loss from the body. Colas, fizzy drinks plus tea and coffee do give some hydration, but are acid forming within the body – which causes minerals to be withdrawn from your hair, nails and bones in order to re-alkalise your blood. Distilled water, contains no minerals and is very pure, but has a lower oxygen content than other waters. If you only drink distilled water then take a daily multi mineral formula in a colloidal form. Available from health shops.

Carbonated (fizzy) waters are linked to kidney and gall stones. If you drink tap water, eat more low fat, live yoghurt to help replenish the healthy bacteria in your gut which are destroyed by the chlorine. If you are thirsty – even if you are drinking plenty of water – you may be diabetic- check with your doctor. If you are fine, but your mouth remains consistently dry after drinking – try taking 75 mg of potassium phosphate daily. For details call the Nutri Centre on 0845 602 6744.

As 7000 people die annually from kidney failure, whilst thousands more suffer kidney stones and urinary tract infections – mainly due to lack of H2O – whether you drink tap, bottled or filtered water, it’s obvious that we all need to drink more water. Cheers!