Water is life. It is all around us. The world is made up of two-third water and our body consists from 50% to 75% water. It is such an amazing fact that solid bodies have so much fluid in it. Water is an excellent conductor of electricity. Our body functions on electric impulses. Each neuron fires an impulse and the organs functions accordingly. Here’s a three-part article on water. In the first and introductory part this week, Anumita discusses the importance of water, tracing its importance to the wisdom of Tai Chi Masters, in the regular column, exclusively in Different Truths.
I recall a tradition in our ancestral home when Dadu (paternal grandfather) was alive; we would bring a big glass, filled with water, from the night before, when he woke up. I brought him the big glass many times but never thought why. Recently, while reading about the benefits of water, I learned that clean water stored overnight in a copper vessel charges it with healthy microbes, which are beneficial for our body. Our daily supplement of copper is present in this water. It made perfect sense to me.
Water is all around us. The world is made up of two-third water and our body consist of 50% to 75% water. It is such an amazing fact that solid bodies have so much fluid in it. Water is an excellent conductor of electricity. Our body functions on electric impulses. Each neuron fires an impulse and the organs functions accordingly.
I will be discussing the importance of water in this article and follow it up with two more articles, in consecutive weeks, which will consist of different types of water. Waters which have both beauty and health benefits.
Chi or Qi Force
The Chi force or Qi is considered the life force in Oriental theory. They believe water is a huge source of Qi force.
Among all the organs in our body, the brain is unique. It doesn’t wait to acquire Qi force till the body process the intake of water. The brain absorbs the Chi or Qi from the mouth, as we drink water, while it’s going down our throat into the abdomen. The water travels down the food channel and acts as a cleanser and lubricant.
According to Tai Chi Masters, there is a particular way of drinking water early in the morning. The best water would be, rainwater collected and stored at room temperature for a day. This water will have essential microbes. The first gulp of water should be held in the mouth for seven seconds and then spit out. This procedure should be done three times. Then, on the fourth gulp, the water should be swallowed. We must drink water many times a day.
Quantity of Water Consumed
Health experts and doctors recommend at least eight to ten glasses of water during the day. The amount of water consumption depends on the person. Generically speaking, it is the count of eight, that is, eight ounces of water eight times a day. But, this specific count may not be applicable for all.
There is a difference in requirement of water in the bodies of an active and a non-active person. The active person will require more water, as the body loses much of its water content during sweating and the muscles require more for functioning and cooling.
The half an ounce per pound per day is a measure for many non-active people, which would amount to 9-13 glasses per day. And in this ratio, if you add the active component it will be around 17 glasses a day.
In the case of women and children, it has its own varied range. Pregnant and breastfeeding women need more water. Reputed health centers prescribe 10-13 cups of water for women, who are pregnant or breastfeed. Children are usually active; water loss is common for them.
Signs of Dehydration
Dehydration is a crippling to the body. Loss of water leads to organ failure. The basic process of breathing consumes water in our body, and we lose water through perspiration, urination, and breathing.
Mouth dryness can be an early sign of dehydration. Less urination or dark yellow urine and followed by muscle cramps are more severe signs. Fatigue and depressions can be a result of less water in the body.
Tips to Avoid Dehydration
There is no substitute for water. No other drinks substitute water. It is a common mistake to consider tea, coffee, juice or other drinks to be a substitute for water. Most of the soft drinks are filled with sugar, which does not help the body to maintain weight. Coffee and tea have caffeine, which is a stimulant. Alcohol is dehydrating liquid. It depletes water from the body.
Drink enough water, eat fruits and vegetables, like watermelon and tomatoes. Fill a jug up in the morning with the level of water you will need for the day. If your water is used up, then you have got your required amount. If there is still water level that would mean more water is needed.
If you feel water is tasteless, leave lemon or oranges in the water, it would add flavour and vitamin C.
In the coming weeks, I will talk about beauty and health benefits of different types of waters. Till then, let’s keep on drinking plenty of water, our life force.
(to be continued)
©Anumita Chatterjee Roy
Photos from the internet.
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