Hydration and Dehydration

Clean spring or borehole water, teas, soups / broths, home-made electrolyte water, juices, smoothies

Dehydration is defined as the excessive loss of body fluid. Symptoms generally become noticeable with mild dehydration which is the loss of 1- 2% of one’s normal water volume.

The main cause for dehydration is drinking less water than is needed.  Your need is based on your size and the amount of sweating you do.

The chronically dehydrated body cannot recover in just one day, regardless of the amount of liquids in the form of clean spring water, hydration broths and juices you imbibe.

What is the difference between thirst and hydration?

These are two entirely different things.   After the continual intake of vital fluids, in about a two-week period you might experience the occasional dry mouth and THIRST (even though you are drinking a lot of fluids).  This phenomenon can only be seen as the body’s confirmation of its true state of profound dehydration – years without meeting the body’s demand for intra and extra-cellular water content.  The body, sensing the continue availability of vital fluids for the first time in many years, will allow the body’s defensive mechanism of conserving water to relax as all the cells begin to receive the required amount of fluids that have been denied for too long.  ONLY NOW can the dramatic health changes can really begin to be visible and be experience.

In his master work “Water and Salt”, Dr. Batmanghelidj explains this phenomenon:

“If the body is once again conditioned to regular and adequate intake, the thirst sensation becomes sharp and the urge to drink water becomes strong… The re-hydration of cells takes place slowly.”

The extent of the chronic dehydration at this point truly becomes known to the individual, as this is the only way re-hydration can occur.

By the third or fourth week, it’s smooth sailing. This is when the potential for healing really becomes evident. Alleviation of symptoms from chronic problems with digestion, circulation, adrenal imbalance, nervousness, etc. becomes evident. The body being 75% water, by keeping it hydrated correctly, the vital fluids will affect many aspects of your health.

Proper hydration can have a dramatic therapeutic effect on chronic kidney, bladder and chronic colon problems, especially if the person has been on protracted medications for these conditions and is totally dehydrated.

DBM Protocol – Adjunct Therapy – Hydration

Broths, Electrolytes, Teas, Water

Water makes up about 60 percent of the human body, and without enough of it, dehydration can set in, causing dry mouth, tiredness, and headaches as well as low/high blood pressure etc.

To stay hydrated, it’s essential to replace the water our body is constantly losing by breathing, perspiring, and using the bathroom. We use that H²O to flush toxins, carry nutrients around the body, and protect sensitive tissue, like the nose and mouth.  For adult males, that means about 3.7 litres of fluids per day (nearly 16 cups), while ladies need roughly 2.7 litres (or 11 cups) per day, studies show.

But not all fluids need to come from water or even liquids. Everything from goat’s milk to home-made pure fresh fruit juice and even coffee or tea, can contribute to our daily fluid intake – though clean spring or borehole water must be your main source. 

On average, food also provides about 20 percent of our daily fluid intake, but it can account for more if we reach for water-rich foods like fruits and veggies (lettuce, oranges, tomatoes, etc.).

Taking into account that 20 percent from food, in a temperate climate, men need to drink 3 litres (about 13 cups) of fluids daily, and women need 2.2 litres (about 9 cups).  Some physicians estimate the required daily intake of water by the person’s body weight – but the above suggestion is a good rule of thumb.

Not everyone’s hydration needs are the same. Age, climate, activity level, and illness can all effect daily needs—and how much we’re each affected by those factors varies too.

Studies show thirst may be a better guideline than numbers, since most of us get plenty of H²O just by letting our mouths be our guide.  Thirst and urine colour might be better guidelines for staying hydrated. Weather, activity level, illness, and age can all impact water needs.  HOWEVER, the problem of following the thirst trigger is that most people do not recognise the body’s call for hydration.  Most see it as a call for food.  Until you are able to distinguish the difference it’s important that you train yourself to ensure your body stays hydrated by drinking the daily requirements as a norm. 

Hydration Broths

Broths used to be a dietary staple, as were fermented foods, and the elimination of these foods from our modern diet is largely to blame for our increasingly poor health, and the need for dietary supplements. Hydration Broths as well as soups are ALL hydrating – follow the links to see more information on Supportive Soups, Eat To Live Soups, and find more information on other hydration broths here.


Electrolytes are vital for your health and can be removed from the body by all types of deprivation. The Hydration page has electrolyte water recipes – take a look!

Coconut Water

Coconut water will hydrate your body and rebalance your electrolytes and helps maintain the body’s fluid levels and its potassium content helps maintain water pressure within cells and blood. The best is to drink it from the fresh young coconut, but packaged coconut water is fine, too (be sure to choose one without added sugar or preservatives). There is a delicious coconut water recipe on the hydration page: Hydration Recipe #7 – Coconut Water Electrolyte


Herbal Tea (Infusions) is a great addition to your daily hydration.   The   leaves   from   plants   such   as   mint, verbena, linden, balm, and so on give a pleasant aroma and flavour to the water in which they are steeped, which makes infusions a satisfying alternative to people who don’t enjoy drinking plain water.  The hydration benefit does not extend to sweetened infusions, or if the tea is made with plants that have diuretic properties, such as parsley and dandelion. Visit the Supportive Teas page for more delicious recipes and information.


The water content in babies is often as much as 75 %, but this will continually decrease with age. As you get older, the more water you should drink and the more fresh food you should eat, which will help keep you physically and mentally agile well into old age.  The brain is up to 90% water. If you have been drinking far too little water for the last decade or drunk it in a way the body cannot use it properly, the consequences will become more apparent in the second half of your life. Fresh fruit and vegetables’ water content can be over 90%, by eating your water; you will provide the body with vitamins, trace elements and slow and evenly supplied water   that   have   the   minerals   ready   in biological bonds.

Water is the main means of transport not only for all the materials that are required in the cells, but also for all the cells’ waste substances. If the transport network isn’t functioning properly because of lack of water, waste isn’t taken away, but left behind as “deposits”. Putting the energy of infinite Love and Gratitude on your water, by giving thanks to it and loving it, you value it; you will even wash fears away and energise even the water with healing ability.  How much water you need to drink and water tips are on the Food For Life: Hydration page

How Much Water Do You Require?

Every day you lose water through your breath, perspiration, urine, bowel movements and from other physiological functions. For your body to function properly, you must replenish its water supply by consuming adequate water and foods which are high in water. Adequate hydration reduces the likelihood of overeating and improves the function and health of human beings. The amount of adequate water depends on many factors including body composition, age, activity level, health status and the season. In general, you want to drink enough fluid so that you rarely feel thirsty and so you produce colourless or slightly yellow urine a day.

Here are the most common ways of calculating that amount:

½ Body Weight in Ounces – For a regularly active adult the general guideline is to drink ½ your body weight in ounces a day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds you would plan to drink about 75 ounces or roughly 8 glasses of water a day.

Replacement approach

In general, the total water that you require is equal to the amount that you lose plus the amount that the body requires for ongoing metabolic functions. You expel between 2 to 4 cups of water each day simply by normal breathing. This amount increases in cold weather or with increased activity. You also lose about 1 cup of water each time you urinate. Other loses of water including sweating – including the skin and feet and bowel movements. Factors such as increased activity level, hot weather, diarrhoea or vomiting and food choices impact the requirement for water.  Your need for water will also fluctuate based on your specific symptoms and diseases.


Fluid requirements in children are based on body weight according to the Holliday-Segar method. Fluid requirements are better estimated by weight than age, to take into account the possibility of an underweight or overweight child. It is important to note fluid requirements are higher with increased losses (i.e. fever, diarrhoea, vomiting, sweating, etc.). Fluid restrictions may be required in some medical cases and those children should be carefully monitored by their physician. It is important, however, to maximize fluid intake within this restriction.

When is it best to drink water?

  • Starting your day with a large glass of water before any other food or drink is a wonderful habit. Throughout the night toxins accumulate in the body and drinking water assists in flushing them out of the body.
  • Always drink water before, during and after any prolonged or excessive exercise or if you are outside in the heat – whether just relaxing and enjoying the sun or working.
  • Throughout the day plan to drink about 1 glass of water an hour. Stop ½ hour before meals and resume about 1 hour after meals.
  • The notion of drinking water while eating is NOT advised for most people. Water dilutes the hydrochloric acid in the stomach thus decreasing the stomachs ability to breakdown food. Some people choose to drink water before a meal or with a meal as it fills up the stomach and decreases appetite. Although this is a common practice for those looking at reducing their weight, it is not advised. Water is essential to health yet, it has no calories or nutrients. Using water in this way is a contributing factor to rebound weight gain and can disrupt health on many levels.

Factors that Influence Requirements

  • Food choices
  • Exercise
  • Environment
  • Illness / Health conditions
  • Pregnancy or breast-feeding

Water Tips

Use the chart on this page called: Water Tips, to gain some insight into how best to drink your water and other water tips.  Additionally, visit our Hydration page for more information

Lemon water / tea   vs   Plain water

Throughout this entire program it is recommended that upon waking the patient flushes the body of  accumulated toxins from the night with 125-250ml of CLEAN spring/borehole water.  In addition to this just prior to or with their morning breakfast, lunch or dinner enjoy a glass of Lemon water / tea to which you may choose to add some grated/sliced fresh ginger and as an extra option a dash of honey if the patient so chooses. Follow this link for more information on lemons and lemon tea.

Rules To Drinking Lemon Water / Tea.

  • The first week of any of our programs, as you are are not eating any solids, you may freely imbibe of this tea (hot) or water (cold).
  • Once they start re-introducing solids into their eating program (in Phase 2), they should start the morning with a glass of clean water – HOT preferably, but it may be cold as well.
  • Patients should drink a glass of lemon water (hot or lemon water (cold) about 30 minutes before a meal. If they enjoy a drink with a meal it is best for them to sip on the lemon TEA and NOT, the lemon water.
  • A glass of lemon tea may be enjoyed after meals about an hour later.

DBM Protocol – Adjunct Therapy – Supportive Hydration


Dehydration is the term used to describe a deficiency of water.  A mere 2% drop in your body’s water supply can trigger signs of dehydration. It is estimated that the majority of people are mildly or chronically dehydrated. Mild dehydration is one the most common causes of daytime fatigue.

Many people believe that thirst is the first sign of dehydration. Yet, typically if you are thirsty you needed water long before that. The older you are or the less healthy you are, the less you’re able to sense that you’re thirsty. On the other hand, excessive thirst and increased urination can be signs of a more serious medical condition.

The following are the common signs and symptoms of dehydration.

  • Fatigue
  • Lack of energy
  • Headache
  • Dry mouth
  • Chronic pains in joints and muscles
  • Lower back pain
  • Constipation
  • Little or no urination
  • Muscle weakness
  • Excessive thirst
  • Dizziness
  • Light-headedness

Causes of Dehydration

  • Decreased consumption of water
  • Foods and drinks high in sugar or caffeine
  • Excessive alcohol
  • Diets low in fruits and vegetables
  • Excessive exercise
  • Extreme temperatures – both hot or cold
  • Diuretics such as caffeine pills and prescription diuretics
  • Specific diseases

Dehydration may be associated with any age, yet it appears to be more common in older adults.

Associated Diseases

  • Pain, whether headache, digestive, joint or muscle pain, is often due to acute or chronic dehydration. As a general recommendation – at the first onset of pain (if not due to injury or infection) drink water.
  • Heartburn
  • Arthritis or Rheumatoid joint pain
  • Lower back pain
  • High blood pressure
  • Angina
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Migraines and headaches
  • Asthma
  • Ulcertaive colitis
  • Depression, loss of sex drive (libido), chronic fatigue syndrome, lupus, muscular dystrophy, and multiple sclerosis are all associated with prolonged dehydration
  • Decreased cognitive performance
  • Cancer

DBM Protocol – Adjunct Therapy – Rehydration

Prevention and Treatment of Dehydration

To ward off dehydration and make sure the body has the fluids it needs, ensure water becomes your patient’s beverage of choice.  


  • Drink 1/2 your body weight in ounces of water per day. (Usually on average about 2.5 L for females and 2.5 L for males)
  • Drink fluids slowly by constantly sipping throughout the day.
  • Don’t drink caffeinated drinks or alcoholic beverages, which can actually have a dehydrating effect. Whilst coffee not STRICTLY diuretic, it does cause inflammation if taken in large quantities in place of water.
  • When flying in an airplane, drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol.
  • Drink water before, during, and after exercise–slowly!
  • Call your doctor if you have a temperature over 102 degrees Fahrenheit, or severe cramps.
  • Carry a water bottle whenever possible, especially when participating in outdoor activities in warm weather.
  • Remember that fluids can be lost through sweat as well as from diarrhea.
  • Check with your DBM Physician / Practitioner to see if your symptoms or conditions alter your need for water.

Additional Tips

  • Choose drinks or food with electrolytes (such as vegetable juice or broth soup) to replenish the fluids lost from diarrhea.
  • Fruit juices can make diarrhea worse, so dilute them with water, due to sugar (fructose) content
  • Don’t hesitate to call a doctor if you are concerned about severe dehydration.


  • Riboflavin, a B Vitamin, will make your urine bright yellow.
  • Although uncommon, it is possible to drink too much water. When your kidneys are unable to excrete excess water or when the daily consumption of water is too high, the electrolyte (mineral) content of the blood is diluted, resulting in low sodium levels in the blood, a condition called hyponatremia.
  • Endurance athletes, such as marathon runners, who drink large amounts of water, are at higher risk of hyponatremia. In general, though, drinking too much water is rare.

For more information on Hydration and Dehydration, follow the related links below: