We always hear the phrase “You are what you eat”, but I’d like to think “You are what you drink” is equally important.
The average adult is made up of about 60% water. The average infant’s water content is 75%. Adults need around 1000 litres of water on average annually, which is 2205 pounds worth of water consumed each year to replenish us. Kids, though drinking far less, have a much higher water to weight ratio.
To help my daughter understand what this meant we used the Watson formula to calculate approximately how much water my daughter’s body is made up of. 13.2 litres! This is what 13.2 litres looks like next to her. I explained that all her organs, and bones and blood had water in them, and this is how much water she had in her whole body. “That a lot” she asked and I said “Yep, it sure is”.
So is what we drink really that important?
A viral video came out a few weeks ago of what happens when you boil a bottle of coke. Once the water evaporates you’re left with a thick sticky syrup. People don’t realise just how much sugar is in pop drinks. Rather than clenching and refreshing your body, rehydrating with pop drinks increases your odds of obesity, diabetes, and a host of other illnesses. Rather than replenishing your organs, your body is forced to work to filter out that thick syrup.
Juice is also shockingly high in sugar. A cup of juice has about as much sugar as a cup of pop and in many cases not much added nutritional value. Some schools are even beginning to ban fruit juice. Studies say that while fruit is a vital part of our daily diet, fruit juice cannot be substituted for a serving of fruit, because it’s quite simply not nutritionally equal.
While more and more people turn to organic foods to limit their exposure to pesticides and contaminants, we forget about what we’re exposing ourselves through water.
Low doses of toxic chemicals like chlorine and fluoride are necessary to clean tap water and prevent bacteria growth, but do we then have to ingest them? Our water is also contaminated with heavy metals like lead or even gold in the case of some Montana residents. While it might seem negligible when talking about parts per million for contaminants, heavy metals tend to accumulate, meaning their concentrations build up in the body over time. Regardless of seemingly small levels, drinking 1000 litres/year over time can yield devastating health effects. Especially on children whose water to weight ratio is so much higher. Filtering your water is the best way to get rid of these contaminants.
One of the growing concerns, especially as a mom to young kids, is the synthetic estrogen levels in drinking water. A study coming out this month in the UK shows the effects of synthetic estrogen on the fish population, with as many as 50% of fish in some regions changing sex. While the effects on humans seem marginal compared to fish, male fertility has dropped a staggering 25% within the last generation.
So if you believe we are what we eat, then perhaps it’s time to expand and also remember that we are also what we drink, and we require large amounts of water to keep our bodies healthy and hydrated. Which is why it’s so vital to make sure the fluid you replenish your body with is the cleanest possible.