Let's take a closer look at water. In advanced societies, thinking that tea, coffee, alcohol, soda pop, or other forms of manufactured beverages are desirable substitutes for the purely natural water needs of the daily "stressed" body is a common, but potentially unhealthy, mistake. Water is the solvent in our bodies, and as such, it regulates all the functions of our bodies, including the action of all the solids dissolved in the water. In fact, every function of the body is monitored and pegged to the efficient flow of water – throughout the body and in and out of every cell. Think for a moment of just a few of the functions that water regulates:
- The movement of blood
- The transport of nutrients into our cells
- The movement of waste out of our cells
- The flow of lymph fluid
- The movement of nerve impulses through our nerves
- The movement of hormones throughout our bodies
- The functioning of our brains
Understand, we can function quite well and for quite a long time without sufficient water. The body quickly adapts and starts extracting more water from your stools for example. The kidneys flush less water to retain the limited supply you have. In fact, there are some health experts who claim that your body does quite well on 2 glasses of any kind of fluid a day -- plus the water found in the food you eat. But these experts confuse adaptation with health. Adaptation eventually leads to compromise, which leads to diminished health over time.
Look, ultimately it may be proven that drinking more than 2 glasses of water a day has no health benefits, but that day has not arrived yet -- and the Negoianu, Goldfarb review
, which claims to have proven that we don’t need to drink eight glasses of water a day, does not bring it any closer. It's bad science, bad reporting by the press, and shoddy peer review by theJournal of the American Society of Nephrology
. The math is irrefutable. Your kidneys excrete 1-2 liters of water
a day – plus the water vapor you breathe out and sweat off. (On a hot day, you can sweat out upwards of 8.5 quarts of water.) Therefore, until it is actually proven otherwise, keep targeting between 64 and 96 ounces of pure water a day
. Pure, fresh (not bottled or canned) fruit and vegetable juices may be substituted for some of this quantity -- as may limited quantities of non-diuretic herbal teas (without sugar). And your food, such as fresh vegetables contain a great deal of water. In general, however, pure water is the key.
Or to paraphrase Aragorn before the gates of Mordor in the movie version of The Lord of the Rings:
The day may come when the case for drinking 8 glasses of water a day fails; when we forsake what we have known for decades and what commonsense tells us is true; but it is not this day - when science proves that water, cola, and coffee are one and the same. It is not this day!!! This day drink water! By all that you hold dear on this good earth -- I bid you drink 8 glasses of pure water a day!