~Meniscus Archives~
Winter 2004
Issue #6
Past, Present & Future

Issue #6 Home


Reaction to November 3rd
Wesley Ratko
Many of us could not beleive it, but just remember what we've been through as a nation.

Be Kind to the Temple and Kick Cancer
Jon Heinrich
The body is your temple; physical and spiritual strength go hand in hand. Like Sting said "We're just spirits in a material world"...

The Dehydration Epidemic
Jaime Larese
Our first step to improving a myriad of health problems is understanding dehydration and how much water we need to be drinking daily to maintain our fragile health.


For more on this important subject here a few books to enlighten you:

  • "Your Body's Many Cries for Water- You are not sick you are thirsty!"
    F. Batmangehelidj, M.D


  • "Water: The Ultimate Cure"
    Steve Meyerowitz


The Dehydration Epidemic

by Jaime Larese
Published 5/15/04

Most everyone knows that water is vital to maintaining our health. Although we could talk for days about how vital it really is, the first thing we need to understand is that bar-none WE ARE CHRONICALLY DEHYDRATED! Chronic dehydration has been linked to a myriad of health problems and unfortunately it’s only getting worse. Allergies, arthritis, even Alzheimer’s disease is linked to chronic dehydration. Our first step (in the line of many) is understanding dehydration and how much water we need to be drinking daily to maintain our fragile health. The sad truth is that once these maladies are upon us it is hard to reverse the damage. The key to a healthy life is PREVENTION. Maintaining hydration is PREVENTION. We need to do the daily work now so that we do not succumb so easily to illness later.

Most people think they drink enough water. Just ask your friends, co-workers, and family. Most likely they’ll admit they don’t drink TONS, but they’ll all say, "I drink enough." They are so wrong.

First and foremost we need to understand what we can’t see. We’ll quickly go to the molecular level. We all understand that we’re made of cells, right? Every living thing is made up of cells. And every single cell is made up of mostly water. Those cells are grouped together with other cells by what is called "extracellular fluid" which is also mostly water. Think of a healthy, hydrated person in the molecular level; their cells are nice and plump like a full pool. An unhealthy, dehydrated, person would be a half-filled pool. Imagine that "pool" as your cells. If the cells and the surrounding extracellular fluid don’t get enough water, then they will eventually be empty and die. When our cells die, we slowly die.

What exactly is dehydration? Dehydration occurs when our bodies output of water exceeds our intake. Most people associate dehydration with heat exhaustion and dry mouth. What most don’t understand is that those symptoms are the LAST CRY from your body for water! Most of us are chronically dehydrated before those symptoms occur. We lose water everyday through urine, prespiration, feces, and our lungs. Not only are we not replacing the lost water, we are increasing that excretion by drinking dehydrating things.

Although most of us are consuming a significant amount of liquids each day, most of what we’re drinking is dehydrating us. For example, coffee, tea, carbonated soda with caffeine, beer, wine, and liquor act as diuretics and increase the discharge of hydrating liquids such as water, fresh juice, milk, and non-caffeinated carbonated water (if we’re drinking these at all.) If we are not replacing what we're losing, then we are chronically dehydrated. Day after day, month after month, and year after year of this unknowing stress we're causing our bodies is what is ultimately giving us health problems. Most Americans don't understand the simplicity of the cause or the cure.

A significant amount of us don't even understand why we’re so dehydrated. We think that if it’s liquid and we’re drinking it we’re hydrating ourselves. WRONG! Here are a few facts. According to "Water, The Ultimate Cure", soft drinks account for more than 27 percent of beverage consumption. The average American consumes more than 54.5 gallons of soda per year. YIKES. Not only is the sugar intake outrageous, but the dehydration factor is outrageous. According to the National Soft Drink website, www.NSDA.org, for every 16 oz. bottle water consumed Americans drank 64 oz. soda. To compensate our bodies excretion, double the amount of water is needed to re-hydrate us. It's hard to imagine that we're taking on that personal responsibity daily. Most Americans, then, are like drought-ridden farmland without any irrigation.

How much water should we be drinking? Rule of thumb: drink half your body weight in ounces. A 160 lb. person should be drinking 80 oz. of water a day. Remember though that for every 6 oz. caffeine or alcohol drink consumed you should drink an additional 10 to 12 oz. water to compensate. It seems like a lot? Just think of those cells and how they will shrivel up and die without that water; and remember that when they die, you slowly die.

Make it easy on yourself. Buy a sturdy plastic bottle. Have it ready and waiting in your fridge, your car, your gym bag, at work and drink it continuously throughout your day. In the long run, your body will thank you.


Jaime Larese





Meniscus Magazine © 2004. All material is property of respective artists.