Life Health Features

Thursday 18 September 2014

How much water should you really be drinking?

An Australian academic and public health expert warned recently that the push to encourage people to drink more water was driven by vested interests and called for a fluid balance.

Graham Clifford

Published 20/08/2014 | 10:58

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Man drinking bottle of water outdoors after workout
The general consensus is that drinking water has a wide array of beneficial impacts on the body.

Is it possible that we, as a society, are drinking too much water? An Australian academic and public health expert warned recently that the push to encourage people to drink more water was driven by vested interests and called for a fluid balance.

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Mr Spero Tsindos of La Trobe University in Melbourne wrote in a medical journal that "health and dietary authorities generally recommend two litres a day of fluid for optimal health, but this has been misinterpreted to mean two litres of water specifically".

Mr. Tsindos believes "beverages like tea and coffee contribute to a person's fluid needs and, despite their caffeine content, do not lead to dehydration. We need to maintain fluid balance and should drink water, but also consider fluid in unprocessed fruits and vegetables and juices".

While some experts and medics are concerned with the motivation behind public health advice on water consumption, the general consensus is that drinking water has a wide array of beneficial impacts on the body.

These range from basic hydration which prevents headaches to fighting renal and urinary infections. Other benefits include aiding digestion, circulation, transportation of nutrients and maintenance of body temperature.

And, according to actress Gwyneth Paltrow, water has feelings. She claims the mood of water can be altered by how we treat it. She says "negativity changes the structure of water, how the molecules behave differently depending on the words or music being expressed around it".

She claims writing phrases such as "I hate you" and "Fear" on vials filled with water resulted in the liquid becoming "grey, misshapen clumps" when frozen. Conversely, writing "I love you" and "peace" on polluted water supposedly yielded "gleaming, hexagonal crystals".

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