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Saturday 5th April

And a fine, cool morning to you all...

i saw this on the MSN Live page, thought i'd share it with you - all about drinking water.

By Alice Hart-Davis

Drench Warfare

Scientific researchers have revealed there is no solid evidence that drinking pure water is more beneficial to us than getting the fluids we need from our food - or drinks such as fruit squash, tea or coffee. In fact, the idea that we need to drink eight glasses of water a day is a myth. We investigate.
Dr Dan Negoianu and Dr Stanley Goldfarb from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia have reviewed every published clinical study into the subject and found that those in hot, dry climates, as well as athletes, do need to drink a lot more water than most of us.
 
However, their spokesman has revealed: "No such data exists for average, healthy individuals. Indeed, it is unclear where this recommendation [for eight glasses a day] came from." In fact, no studies showed any benefit to organs from increased water intake.
 
There was also little evidence to suggest that water improves skin tone or that drinking lots of it to help you feel full actually helps people to lose weight.
 
Spokesman for the British Dietetic Association Ursula Arens says: "Tea and the sort of coffee you get in Britain are fine for rehydrating - the diuretic effects of caffeine are massively outweighed by the fluids in those drinks. There are millions of people who get most of their fluids from tea without any ill effects."
 
Here, Alice Hart-Davis demolishes the myths about water.
 
It has become so much a part of ‘health wisdom’ that few people question it. Ask anyone how much water they drink and they’ll invariably look a little guilty. ‘Not as much as I ought to,’ they’ll say. Or, ‘I do try, but two litres is an awful lot.’ Well, if you think you are failing, I have good news. You don’t need to drink that much.

The idea that we all ought to be packing down two litres of pure water a day has become so entrenched that even writing that you don’t have to feels like heresy. Water is vital, after all, for the proper functioning of the body, isn’t it? Our bodies are 60 per cent water and without it, like plants, we shrivel and die. The body needs a millilitre of water to process the energy in each calorie it consumes, so, given that the average diet contains around 2,000 calories a day, isn’t two litres the minimum requirement? As we shall see, that isn’t the case.

It’s time to look at the claims made about water – and test them with the scientific experts.

Claim one: Drinking two litres of water a day improves your health

‘In theory, one doesn’t need to drink any water at all, as long as one consumes sufficient fluid, whether that’s water or something else,’ says Ron Maughan, professor of sports sciences at Loughborough University, one of the UK’s leading experts on hydration. ‘In fact we could get away without drinking anything at all, if we had enough fluid-filled food. Which do you reckon has more water? Fizzy drinks or tomatoes?  Fizzy drinks are around 11 per cent sugar. Tomatoes are 93 per cent water. Work it out. Of course it’s far harder to consume 500g of tomatoes than to drink 500ml of fizzy drink, but the principle is clear. So if you eat plenty of salads and fruit and vegetables, you may not need to drink much liquid. Mostly, people choose foods that mean they’ll need some liquid, too, such as water or coffee.’

Does the claim hold water? Clearly not. So why has the cult of water got such a grip on us? ‘Misguided people in the media are promulgating beliefs that are not based on the facts,’ says Maughan.
 
Claim two: Coffee doesn’t hydrate you because it is a diuretic

‘Caffeine is a weak diuretic, but you quickly become habituated to it,’ says Maughan. ‘If you took caffeine tablets, you’d get a negative fluid balance, because it would stimulate the body to lose water but because coffee is taken as a drink, your body gets plenty of fluid.’

Does the claim hold water? No.

Claim three: Drinking water will improve your digestion

‘You need a couple of litres of fluid a day to keep food moving properly through your gut,’ says Ian Marber of the Food Doctor nutrition consultancy. ‘But you should get a certain amount of this from the food that you eat and it’s simply not true that you need to drink gallons of water to improve the process. In fact, I find that if clients say they drink lots of water, it’s not always a good sign; they might be thirsty because they have glucose imbalances.’

Does the claim hold water? No.

Claim Four: Drinking water improves your complexion

Ask any beauty professional what will help make skin more radiant and younger-looking and they will invariably say: ‘Drink two litres of water a day.’ But ask a dermatologist, such as Dr Leslie Baumann, who founded the Centre of Cosmetic Dermatology at the University of Miami, and she will tell you that what you drink makes precious little difference to the texture of the skin. She says that ‘internal’ water in the body isn’t transferred to the skin and you’d have to be horrifically dehydrated before a lack of water showed up on your face.

Does the claim hold water? Technically, no, though I have to add that since people who habitually drink buckets of water tend to look better and have fresher-looking skin than those who exist on coffee and Chardonnay, this one can’t be dismissed outright (even if they look better because people who choose to drink water tend to make plenty of other positive, healthy-living choices).

Claim five: Drinking lots of water improves concentration

The water lobby would have it that unless we stay properly hydrated, our mental faculties suffer. Concentration falls by up to 10 per cent as the brain (which is 80 per cent water) becomes dehydrated. ‘The body has a requirement for fluid to function at its best, mentally and physically,’ says Anna Denny, a nutrition scientist at the British Nutrition Foundation. ‘But that fluid can include tea, coffee, fruit juices and soft drinks. We do advise drinking plenty of water, because it is calorie-free. Most of us consume more calories than we need, so water is the easiest way to meet your daily fluid requirements without taking on extra calories. But there is a role for drinks with skimmed milk – for its calcium content – and fruit juices, because of the vitamins they contain.’

Does the claim hold water? Not according to the scientists.

Claim six: Water is good for ‘detoxing’

The idea that drinking water helps the body purge itself of toxins faster than it would otherwise do is the basis of all ‘detox’ diets. It sounds great in theory and London’s detox gurus have many famous followers who all swear by their methods, but medical doctors invariably disagree.

They point out that the body’s main organs of detoxification, the liver and kidneys, do a very good job and as long as they have sufficient fluid to function, drinking litres of extra water isn’t going to make much difference.

‘All the stuff about detoxing is baloney,’ says Loughborough University’s Ron Maughan.

Does the claim hold water? No.  ‘It’s simply not true that you need to drink gallons of water to improve your digestion’

Article taken from www.thelondonmagazine.co.uk


All in all an interesting article, don't you think?  What i know about science you could fit on the head of a pin, with room to spare but this much i do know.  On this high protein/low carb diet, i do need to drink at least two litres of water a day or i dehydrate badly [no fruit, y'see] and the weight doesn't come off as well.
i'll slow down again when i get near to goal weight, but until then i need to keep going.  Don't like drinking so much water and normally, i don't but don't need to like it, just drink it.

later, guys