Water: The Lifegiving Elixir
Older adults suffer from ailments like arthritis and joint pain, dry skin, kidney and heart issues. In most cases, adequate water intake is recommended by most doctors.
Water is the supreme hydrating liquid and is called the elixir of life. Water is present throughout the body as plasma, serum, cytoplasm, saliva, mucus, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), sweat and urine. It is necessary for the absorption of nutrition and conducting waste out of the body. The cells of our body cannot survive without water.
Science tells you to drink at least 8 glasses of water each day. But the ancient Indian science called the ‘Vedas’ tells you how to drink water to have its optimum benefit.
Yes, according to Ayurveda, there are some rules for how to drink water. Ancient Ayurveda has various theories regarding tips to drink water. These tips have been followed over the centuries. These methods state that the way you drink water affects your overall health. In fact, Ayurveda has mentioned water as a manifestation of consciousness.
What the Vedas Say About Drinking Water
1. Sit Down and Drink Water
Ayurveda recommends you to drink water sitting down than standing. It states clearly that by standing and drinking water, the delicate balance of fluids in our body is affected. This can lead to fluid retention in the joints and cause arthritis. Instead, when you sit down, your body (muscles and nervous system) is much more relaxed. This helps the muscles to absorb nutrients and the nerves to digest food and other fluids easily. Your kidneys also function more efficiently while you are seated. This tip is especially useful to older adults with joint pain or kidney malfunctions.
2. Sip Water Slowly
Most people make the mistake of gulping down water all at once. Instead, Ayurveda suggests that you must take smaller sips, taking time to breathe in between sips. There are three doshas in the body – vata, pitta, and kapha. You must keep your dosha prakruti in mind while consuming water. For example, people with vata prakruti should drink water one hour after a meal. People with pitta prakruti should have small sips during meals to start the digestion early. People with kapha prakruti should have water before starting a meal so that they eat less. This helps them lose weight easily.
3. Avoid Cold Water
Drinking refrigerated water is very common nowadays, especially in summer. Ayurveda recommends avoiding ice cold, chilled water and promotes drinking water at room temperature or even warm. Cold water interferes with the process of digestion and puts off the ‘fire’ that is present in the stomach. It also decreases blood supply to body organs and may lead to constipation. Drinking warm water instead helps in proper digestion. It also promotes weight loss and relieves bloating and pain. Warm water also ensures that your cholesterol levels are under control and cleans your arteries of any blockages. In summers, you can opt for water cooled by mud pitchers (matkas) instead of refrigerated water.
4. Drink When Thirsty
When your body requires water, it sends signals to you. Ayurveda states that you should drink water only when you feel thirsty. Water is important to the body, but too much water could damage the kidneys. Also, water requirements for every person are different. The same amount of water cannot be recommended to everyone. Therefore, it is necessary to recognize your body’s cues for thirst and drink water accordingly.
5. Know the Indications of Thirst
When the water level in your body goes down, the body sends you signals. The first sign would be dry and chapped lips. Next, the colour of your urine changes. Dark yellow urine might be a sign of dehydration (the normal colour is clear and straw coloured). Notice these cues and start drinking water before they become health problems.
6. Drink Water First Thing in the Morning
Ayurveda recommends drinking water the first thing in the morning. This practice is called Ushapan. It helps flush out the toxins in the body that have accumulated during the night. It prevents various diseases and keeps your intestines clean.
7. Store Water in Copper or Silver Vessels
Ayurveda always endorses storing and drinking water in copper (tamba) and silver (chandi) vessels. Copper and silver positively charge the water with ions and help balance out the body’s doshas. Copper has various antioxidant and antibacterial properties that raise the immunity of an individual. It also has anti-cancer properties. Silver is a powerful antioxidant. It also cools down the intestines and makes digestion smoother.
Water is not just another fluid to partake. It has important, life-saving properties. These easy tips from Ayurveda ensure that water works better for you. Try practicing these, they are quite easy and doable. After all, they have been written after the meticulous study of the human body and passed down through the generations for the benefit of humankind.
Also Read: Is RO Water Good For You?
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