The year 2020 has been a year of the Covid-19 Pandemic that infected millions of Indians and resulted in over a lakh deaths. With the vaccination being more than six months away and having no immediate cure for the Coronavirus, the buzzword in every Indian family became “immunity”. We scoured the web in search of immunity boosters that could help us stave off a potential attack from the virus. We tried everything under the sun and improved our fitness levels through diet and exercise efforts. However, not enough has been said about the immunity-boosting effects of drinking purified water. So, let’s talk about how hydration is essential to improve your defense mechanism against infections. To understand the range of water purifiers that support the immunity, check out the RO water filter range
So, what is the immune system?
According to a famous online dictionary, the immune system is what protects your body from diseases and infections. It’s the bodily system that produces the immune response to defend your body from foreign substances, cells, and tissues. The immune system includes various parts of the body including the thymus, spleen, lymph nodes, special deposits of lymphoid tissue (such as those in the gastrointestinal tract and bone marrow), macrophages, lymphocytes including the B cells and T cells, and antibodies.
What are the benefits of hydrating your body?
- A whopping 70% of the human body is made up of water. Every system of the body requires water for optimal functioning. The human bloodstream is 90% water and through the circulatory system, transports oxygen and nutrients to all the organs of the body. The bloodstream also helps in the removal of metabolic waste from the cells. Hence, hydration is required for the blood to stream through the body.
- Some organs of the body like the heart, liver, brain, lungs, and kidneys contain more water than other organs. The biochemical pathways of the brain are supported by proper hydration. In fact, dehydration for even two hours can result in cognitive impairment. Study after study has shown that functions such as complex problem solving, coordination, and attention are impaired because of dehydration. The electrolytes present in the water you consume are also extremely important for the proper functioning of the brain. If the brain does not send a signal to the immune system to fight the invader, it will result in a silent collapse.
- The lymphatic system is made up of a network of lymph, lymphatic vessels, lymphoid organs, lymph nodes, etc. The lymphatic vessels carry a clear liquid called lymph (derived from the Latin word Lympha that translates to the deity of freshwater). Hence, the hydration levels of the body have a direct effect on how effective your lymphatic system is functioning.
- The lymphatic system of the human body is responsible for the removal of toxins, pathogens, and other debris from the human body. When you are dehydrated, the lymphatic system is impaired and toxins get accumulated. It is not for nothing that our elders say that we need to drink more water when we are suffering from a viral infection like the flu.
- The WBC (White Blood Cells) of the human body, also called leukocytes or leucocytes, are the cells of the immune system that are involved in protecting the body against both infectious disease and foreign invaders. The lymphatic system transports the WBC to the organs that are under attack by a foreign body.
- There is also evidence suggesting that there is immunosuppression due to dehydration. In a 2013 study, researchers investigated the effects of dehydration on immune functions The subjects of the study were divided into two groups – mild dehydration and severe dehydration. Results suggested that severe dehydration resulted in immunosuppression, including decreased neutrophil (an important type of tissue-healing and infection-fighting white blood cell) function.
- Remember what we said about a nutritious diet helping fight disease? Water helps in digesting the food you consume so that the essential nutrients are assimilated and absorbed well by the body. Thus, even if you take a highly nutritious diet, if you don’t complement the food with water intake, the digestion and absorption of the nutrients will suffer, which will indirectly affect your immune system.
So, make sure that you have access to clean drinking water right away if you don’t already have it. Invest in a quality water purifier from a reputed brand like HUL Pureit to protect your family from waterborne diseases. If you opt for a variant that uses an infusion of fresh Copper ions, you can double the benefits as Copper has a ton of health benefits with its anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory properties.
How much water should you drink?
We recommend a minimum of 8-10 glasses of water for the average person though the specifics may vary depending on age, metabolic rate, and levels of physical activity. Just like you should complement your food with water for proper digestion, you should complement your exercise with hydration as you will lose a lot of water through perspiration.
At the same time, it is easy to go overboard to reap the goodness of water, especially if you have been neglecting your intake for a while. Please moderate the intake lest you end up with hyponatremia, a condition that results from drinking excess water leading to a dilution of sodium concentration in your body. It can cause a loss of consciousness, seizures, or even take you to a state of coma. In such extreme cases, hospitalization is the only alternative.
So, make it a practice to sip clean drinking water gradually and increase the intake over time. Learn the benefits of drinking water from your water filter.