With this hot dry summer I though it only fitting that we re-visit an old article that I wrote several years ago.
Americans are probably the biggest fanatics about washing their bodies. Many take more than one shower each day. Yet, most people have a hard time washing the inside of their body. Getting people to drink enough water daily is pretty tough. Your body is made up primarily of water. It is vital to every function of the body. We can live for weeks without food but only a few days without water. Your body treats water like water and other fluids like food. So fruit juice, coffee, soda, etc. doesn't count toward your total daily water intake. In fact, coffee, soda and alcoholic beverages dehydrate your body. Exercise, airplane trips and excessive sweating also dehydrate you.
We have been taught that it is important to drink 8 glasses of water each day. How big of a glass: 1 oz., 4 oz, 8 oz, 16 oz, etc.? The answer is 8 - 8 oz glasses or 64 ounces each day (about 2 liters or ½ gallon). Most people think of this as a maximum but it's really a minimum intake. This convenient rule of thumb doesn't take into account body size, activity level, altitude, climate, environmental pollution level, etc. Common sense dictates that someone doing physical labor needs more water daily than a retired person doing crossword puzzles does. In Colorado, most of us need more than 64 ounces of water each day due to the altitude and dry climate.
The Great Healer
Dr. Batmangheldi is an Iranian doctor who was on the wrong side of politics when the Shah was overthrown. He was thrown into prison and sentenced to die without a real trial. Since he was a doctor he was forced to treat other prisoners who got sick, but water was the only medicine he had access to. According to his book, Our Body's Many Cries for Water, Dr. Batmangheldi claims to have successfully treated many serious illnesses which plague modern man with water and salt alone. Ulcers, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, kidney stones, arthritis, asthma, chronic joint pain, obesity, chronic fatigue, stress, prostatitis and sexual dysfunction all were successfully treated by re-hydrating the body.
Dr. Batmangheldi says that dehydration is a primary factor in the production of disease all over the body. It produces free radicals in the body and water is the greatest free radical remover. Dehydration appears to accelerate the aging process, is a cause of chronic low energy and lowers the body's ability to handle stress. He believes it is a major contributing factor to breast and other types of cancer. It also plays a role in heart and circulatory ailments. He has repeatedly helped patients to cancel their surgeries because he has healed them with water.
Clean water is the key here. It is important that you realize there really isn't any safe water in any state. Our testing in the office finds chemicals 80%, fungus 60% and parasites 30% of the time in the tap water. Stick with filtered or bottled water only. The Pur Filter works well and is pretty cheap to purchase. Reverse Osmosis filters are better but the type that automatically back-flush themselves are the most dependable. I have a system for cleaning my water for the whole house but it cost several thousand dollars and has to be manually back-flushed.
Salt and Water?
Dr. Batmangheldi says you should put ¼ teaspoon of sea salt per ½ gallon of water. Salt and sea salt are not the same thing. Sea salt has 72-92 minerals and trace minerals while refined table salt has only Sodium Chloride. Real sea salt has a light gray to a dirty white color while refined salt is bleached white. Most people believe that salt is bad and should be avoided. Only bad salt should be avoided while wholesome sea salt should be used and enjoyed. Good sea salt is harvested off the coast of France using shallow holding ponds and sunlight to evaporate the water. It is not heated or chemically processed with anti-caking agents, bleaches and toxic conditioners. Pure sea salt is now available in grocery or health food stores. In the past, the only place you get it was from the Grain and Salt Society and you had to buy large quantities. Put a pinch of this salt in your water and you won't dehydrate as easy or have to run to the bathroom as much. The minerals in the sea salt help hold the water in your body.
In his book, Sea Salt's Hidden Powers, Dr. Jacques de Langre talks about the healing power of sea salt. "It can help in correcting excessive acidity; restoring good digestion' relieving allergies and skin diseases; and preventing many forms of cancer. Natural salt provides a steady boost in cellular energy and give the body a heightened resistance to infections and bacterial diseases". He also says it is protective against radiation damage which is important at our altitude. He cites a research project that kept a chicken heart alive for over 37 years by using a solution of sea salt. He voluntarily ended the experiment because he felt he had proven that living cells could have a physical immortality. Another study showed that all the bacteria in polluted rivers quickly died when the water reached the ocean proving it's innate antibacterial properties. The book alludes to a correlation between high sea salt consumption and protection from radioactive fallout. Based on data collected on survivors of the atomic bombs dropped on Japan, those with a high salt diet fared better than others farther from the blast who died.
With so many benefits you can see why we recommend using it in your water and on your food. One problem with sea salt is that it is slightly moist so it doesn't really pour from a normal saltshaker. That moisture is important should not be removed by heat or rice, etc. You can buy sea salt in specially designed shakers or keep it in a glass container and sprinkle a pinch on your food or in your water with your fingers. I think it also tastes great alone when I feel dehydrated. So get a small bag or shaker and start enjoying your salt again. Also the Chelated Minerals with Trace Minerals have 10 vital minerals and 60 trace minerals per tablet. It is like sea salt except that it has a higher concentration of the 10 vital minerals.
Water and Minerals
From the above information I hope you have learned that it is the combination of water and minerals that determines your hydration level. This is why it is important to also take your minerals each day. Leave out either part of that water/mineral equation and you will be dehydrated. In the summer you should increase or even double your mineral and water consumption to counteract the effects of heat and sweat. Chronic dehydration will make you fatigued, achy, weak, and prone to headaches, infections and muscle spasms. Minerals also help to rid your body of the chemicals we have been breathing from the rash of fires this summer. So if you aren't feeling so good lately, trying simply increasing your water and mineral consumption and you might be amazed at the difference.
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