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Aug 26, 2010

WHY WATER MATTERS

Even healthy eaters often underestimate the importance of their water intake and wind up suffering from chronic, low-grade dehydration. Here are a few reasons good hydration is essential to good health:

ENERGY: Suboptimal hydration slows the activity of enzymes, including those responsible for producing energy, leading to feelings of fatigue. Even a slight reduction in hydration can lower metabolism and reduce your ability to exercise efficiently.

DIGESTION: Our bodies produce an average of 7 litres of digestive juices daily. When we don’t drink enough liquid, our secretions are more limited and the digestive process is inhibited. (Note that drinking too much water all at once, particularly with food, can also dilute digestive juices, reducing their efficacy and leading to indigestion.)

REGULARITY: As partially digested food passes through the colon, the colon absorbs excess liquid and transfers it to the bloodstream so that a stool of normal consistency is formed. When the body is low on water, it extracts too much liquid from the stool, which then becomes hard, dry and difficult to eliminate. Slowed elimination contributes to bodywide toxicity and inflammation.

BLOOD PRESSURE: When we are chronically dehydrated, our blood becomes thicker and more viscous. Additionally, in response to reduced overall blood volume, the blood vessels contract. To compensate for the increased vein-wall tension and increased blood viscosity, the body must work harder to push blood through the veins, resulting in elevated blood pressure.

STOMACH HEALTH: Under normal circumstances, the stomach secretes a layer of mucus (which is composed of 98 percent water) to prevent its mucus membranes from being destroyed by the highly acidic digestive fluid it produces. Chronic dehydration, though, impedes mucus production and may irritate and produce ulcers in the stomach lining.

RESPIRATION: The moist mucus membranes in the respiratory region are protective; however, in a state of chronic dehydration, they dry out and become vulnerable to attack from substances that might exist in inhaled air, such as dust and pollen.

ACID-ALKALINE BALANCE: Dehydration causes enzymatic slowdown, interrupting important biochemical transformations, with acidifying results at the cellular level. The acidification of the body’s internal cellular environment can be further worsened when excretory organs responsible for eliminating acids (e.g., the skin and kidneys) don’t have enough liquid to do their jobs properly. An overly acidic biochemical environment can give rise to a host of inflammatory health conditions, as well as yeast and fungus growth.

WEIGHT MANAGEMENT: Feelings of thirst can be confused with hunger, both because eating can soothe thirst and also because dehydration-induced fatigue is often misinterpreted as a lack of fuel (e.g., sugar). Both dynamics can lead to false sensations of hunger, triggering overeating and weight gain. Inadequate hydration can also promote the storage of inflammatory toxins, which can also promote weight gain.

SKIN HEALTH: Dehydrated skin loses elasticity and has a dry, flaky appearance and texture. But dehydration can also lead to skin irritation and rashes, including conditions like eczema. We need to sweat about 24 ounces a day to properly dilute and transport the toxins being eliminated through our skin. When we are chronically dehydrated, the sweat becomes more concentrated and toxins aren’t removed from our systems as readily, which can lead to skin irritation and inflammation.

CHOLESTEROL: Cholesterol is an essential element in cell membrane construction. When we are in a state of chronic dehydration and too much liquid is removed from within the cell walls, the body tries to stop the loss by producing more cholesterol to shore up the cell membrane. Although the cholesterol protects the cell membrane from being so permeable, the overproduction introduces too much cholesterol into the bloodstream.

KIDNEY and URINARY HEALTH: When we don’t drink enough liquid, our kidneys struggle to flush water-soluble toxins from our system. When we don’t adequately dilute the toxins in our urine, the toxins irritate the urinary mucus membranes and create a germ and infection-friendly environment.

JOINT HEALTH: Dehydrated cartilage and ligaments are more brittle and prone to damage. Joints can also become painfully inflamed when irritants, usually toxins produced by the body and concentrated in our blood and cellular fluids, attack them, setting the stage for arthritis.

AGEING: The normal ageing process involves a gradual loss of cell volume and an imbalance of the extracellular and intracellular fluids. This loss of cellular water can be accelerated when we don’t ingest enough liquids, or when our cell membranes aren’t capable of maintaining a proper fluid balance.
Related: Hydration Tips 
Related: Common Myths about Dehydration

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Posted: Aug 26, 2010 6:49pm
May 7, 2010

From Spring Cleanse Your Liver: 6 Foods, Nutrients, and Herbs | Care2 Healthy & Green Living:

THE LIVER: this overworked organ is responsible for over 500 different functions, including: detoxifying environmental chemicals, storing certain vitamins, controlling cholesterol levels, metabolizing fat, and even regulating hormones.  
 Your liver may need cleansing to help it detoxify alcohol, tobacco smoke, environmental pollutants, food additives, pesticides, and hidden chemicals in your personal care products.

1. WATER with LEMON JUICE (fresh juice of one-half to one LEMON) 
 Your body needs water to flush out toxins in your bowel movements and urine. The addition of fresh lemon juice helps to stimulate your liver to produce bile that helps flush out toxins.
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2. GARLIC and ONIONS
 
Garlic and Onions contain important phytonutrients that break down fatty deposits in the body. Also, they kill viruses, bacteria, and fungi and protect against heart disease too.
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3. MILK THISTLE EXTRACT
 Milk thistle contains a potent substance called silymarin that protects the liver by inhibiting damaging substances that can cause liver cell damage. Silymarin also prevents the depletion of the nutrient glutathione–one of the most critical nutrients for liver detoxification. Both alcohol consumption and exposure to various types of synthetic chemicals can deplete glutathione in the liver. A typical dose for liver cleansing is about 140 mg of silymarin.
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4. VITAMIN C (1000 mg)
 While glutathione supplements are available, the best way to boost this important nutrient is to supplement with vitamin C. Give your liver an extra boost of glutathione by supplementing with vitamin C.
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5. DANDELION EXTRACT
 
The Australian Journal of Medical Herbalism cites research supporting the liver-regenerating properties of dandelion. Due to pesticides and pollutants I don’t recommend picking dandelion root from your lawn.
 Take 1-2 teaspoons of dandelion root extract or supplement with 500-2000 mg daily in capsules for two weeks to help cleanse your liver.
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6. EAT INDIAN CURRIES for TURMERIC
 Turmeric, one of the main spices used in Indian cuisine, adds a yellow-orange colour to curry dishes along with a potent healing boost.
 Turmeric decreases cholesterol levels, lowers inflammation in the body, and protects the liver from free radical damage. 
 Add turmeric powder to soups, stews, and curries or supplement with 50 mg of curcumin (turmeric’s active ingredient) to bolster your liver’s cleansing abilities.
........................................................................................
Always consult a qualified health professional before taking any herbs or nutrients.
Michelle Schoffro Cook, RNCP, ROHP, DAc, DNM, doctor of natural medicine, author of: The Life Force Diet, The Ultimate pH Solution, and The 4-Week Ultimate Body Detox Plan.
Learn more at: www.TheLifeForceDiet.com. 

Nov 30, 2009

Ayurvedic Healing Foods
from Yoga Journal By Miriam Kasin Hospodar
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Lemons are both purifying and nourishing, and they stimulate digestion. For reducing toxins, drink unsweetened lemonade as many times during the day as desired.

Ghee (clarified butter) is among the best rejuvenating and longevity-promoting foods. It aids digestion and calms the nerves. Ghee's rate of absorption is high, making it an excellent medium for transporting the nutrients of other foods to the tissues.

Dates and Figs are prized as excellent sources of energy. They also help build tissues. Eat one or two every day.

Almonds are nourishing and life-supporting. Ayurveda recommends blanching and peeling almonds because their skins are slightly toxic. Eat several almonds daily to increase strength and energy.

Mung Beans are among the best legumes for their supreme digestibility and health-giving qualities. They are beneficial when people are sick or otherwise in need of very light food. Mung beans are particularly nourishing when mixed with rice or other grains.

Ginger is often referred to as "the universal medicine." It promotes good digestion and helps remove ama. Dried ground ginger is more concentrated in its flavor and its effects. To aid digestion, sprinkle a thin slice of fresh ginger with lemon juice and salt, and eat one-half hour before a meal.

Cumin Seeds serve as a digestive aid and ama-reducer for all doshas. To help remove toxins, start the day by drinking warm water mixed with a pinch of powdered cumin and ginger.

Lassi is a beverage prepared by mixing one part yogurt into two parts water. It is an excellent nutritive digestive aid, taken during or after a meal. You can flavor lassi either with raw sugar or honey and a little ground cardamom, or with toasted ground cumin seeds and salt.
Juicy, Seasonal Fruits are both highly nutritive and purifying. Juicy fruits should be completely ripe for maximum healing value.

Green, Leafy Vegetables are both nutritive and purifying. Their bitter flavor stimulates the liver, helps balance blood sugar, and aids skin conditions. Prepare with a little ghee or oil.

Cow's Milk is considered a vitalizer by Ayurveda and recommended for those emaciated after injury. Ayurveda recommends bringing milk to a full boil to remove the qualities that can cause excess mucus. To further reduce milk's clogging qualities, add a pinch of ginger and/or black pepper. Also, milk should be imbibed separately from foods with any taste other than sweet.

Water is universally beneficial for everyone, and assists virtually all healing. It promotes digestion and, when imbibed while hot, is particularly effective for removing ama.

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Posted: Nov 30, 2009 11:15am
Jul 10, 2009
H2-WHOA! Australian Town Bans Bottled Water Sales

The New South Wales Southern Highlands town of Bundanoon has voted overwhelmingly to ban the sale of bottled water...
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A community meeting last night took the unusual step, making it the first town in Australia, possibly the world, to ban the sale of bottled water. The "Bundy on Tap" campaign will see still bottled water replaced by reusable plastic bottles that can be bought, then filled up for free at water stations throughout the town.
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The campaign is the brainchild of Huw Kingston, who owns the bike shop in the town of 2,500 people. Mr Kingston says he is surprised by the overwhelming interest in his idea. After doing more than 70 media interviews yesterday, Mr Kingston was still fielding calls from the BBC, as well as New Zealand and Japanese media last night.
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Idea catches on
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It's not just the media that's tapping into the idea. Hot on the news of the planned ban yesterday, NSW Premier Nathan Rees ordered all State Government departments and agencies to stop buying bottled water.
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"As a principle, we want to move away from bottled water because of the degradation to the environment that the discarded bottles cause," he said.
 
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Note my care2 news, here
"Banning the bottle puts Bundy on the map"  http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/07/09/2620882.htm?section=justin 

 

 
 
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Jenny Dooley
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