• How much water should I drink everyday ?

    Posted on by Dr. Shweta Labde

    Whatsapp message floods with various health tips everyday. May it be weight loss, cancer remedies, flax seed benefits, water therapy, etc. I have similar whatsapp verified doctors visiting my clinic many a times.

    Some of them try to explain about every 2 hourly meals, and how they manage it; whereas some of them insist on having plenty of water everyday. “Doctor I make it a point to finish these 3 bottles of water at work, I have kept them on my work desk, at times I also set an alarm” said a patient day before. “This aids detoxification, relieves constipation,etc”.

    Believe me friends, it takes too much efforts to create awareness among these people.

    Let us first understand that – Hunger and thirst are natural urges, which should be attended only on body’s demand, and not forced. Everything you put into your mouth has to undergo the process of digestion. Now give it a thought – when you eat every 2 hrly or drink ltrs of water unnecessarily, aren’t you exerting your digestive system? Forget about detoxification, you are making your body to create Aam.

    Aam is that undigested part of diet which acts as toxins, and is difficult to get rid of. Aam is further the causative factor for various health conditions like joint pain, swelling, weakness, lifestyle diseases like thyroid, BP, heart conditions, etc.  Drinking excess of water unnecessarily results in weakening of digestive fire, thus reducing its ability to digest even the easiest and healthiest food and finally forming Aam.

    Here arises the need of scientific thinking instead of blindly following therapies forwarded on social media.

    Lets have a look at what Ayurveda says about drinking water –

    “नाम्बु पेयमशक्त्या वा स्वल्पमल्पाग्निगुल्मिभि‌ः।।

    पाण्डूदरातिसारार्शोग्रहणीशोषशोथिभिः।

    ऋते शरन्निदाघाभ्यां पिबेत्स्वस्थोऽपि चाल्पंशःं”।। वा.सु.५/१४

    The above verse explains one should drink less water or not drink water if –

    • He/she is weak or the digestive power is weakened.
    • If the person is suffering from loose motions, piles, any type of swelling or inflammation.
    • Even a healthy person should always drink water only in desirable quantity.
    • Even in summer season one should drink very less water.

    This clearly states that one should drink water in less (desirable) quantity and only when the body demands it. 

    समस्थूलकृशा भुक्तमध्यान्तप्रथमाम्बुपाः। वा.सु ५/१४

    – Here’s one more query answered, about drinking of water, associated with meals.

    • Ayurveda specifies drinking of little water at midmeal (after finishing half the meal). This maintains the balance of the tridoshas and thus helps to attain proper health.
    • Water consumed after the meal leads to increase in kapha, thus resulting in unhealthy weight gain.
    • Water when consumed before meal, weakens the digestive fire, this reduces the digestive ability to such an extent, that it can’t even digest healthy and proportionate food. Thus resulting in lack of nourishment and unhealthy weight loss.

    Drinking excess of water without the natural urge, weakens the digestive fire (agnimandya), causes severe indigestion(ajirna) and becomes a cause for various illness. As specified in the Ayurveda text; an imbalanced Agni (digestive fire) is the root cause for major health issues (vyadhi).

    So next time you fill your water bottle or set an alarm remember this article. Stay fit Stay healthy.

    Note – The desirable quantity of water to quench thirst can differ with the individual, his prakriti and health status and season.

     

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