The 11 cities most likely to run out of drinking water – like Cape Town

Dripping tap

Cape Town is in the unenviable situation of being the first major city in the modern era to face the threat of running out of drinking water.

However, the plight of the drought-hit South African city is just one extreme example of a problem that experts have long been warning about – water scarcity.

Despite covering about 70% of the Earth’s surface, water, especially drinking water, is not as plentiful as one might think. Only 3% of it is fresh.

Over one billion people lack access to water and another 2.7 billion find it scarce for at least one month of the year. A 2014 survey of the world’s 500 largest cities estimates that one in four are in a situation of “water stress”

According to UN-endorsed projections, global demand for fresh water will exceed supply by 40% in 2030, thanks to a combination of climate change, human action and population growth.

It shouldn’t be a surprise, then, that Cape Town is just the tip of the iceberg. Here are the other 11 cities most likely to run out of water.

1. São Paulo

Brazil’s financial capital and one of the 10 most populated cities in the world went through a similar ordeal to Cape Town in 2015, when the main reservoir fell below 4% capacity.

At the height of the crisis, the city of over 21.7 million inhabitants had less than 20 days of water supply and police had to escort water trucks to stop looting.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption At the height of the drought, Sao Paulo’s reservoirs became a desolate landscape

It is thought a drought that affected south-eastern Brazil between 2014 and 2017 was to blame, but a UN mission to São Paulo was critical of the state authorities “lack of proper planning and investments”.

The water crisis was deemed “finished” in 2016, but in January 2017 the main reserves were 15% below expected for the period – putting the city’s future water supply once again in doubt.

2. Bangalore

Local officials in the southern Indian city have been bamboozled by the growth of new property developments following Bangalore’s rise as a technological hub and are struggling to manage the city’s water and sewage systems.

To make matters worse, the city’s antiquated plumbing needs an urgent upheaval; a report by the national government found that the city loses over half of its drinking water to waste.

Like China, India struggles with water pollution and Bangalore is no different: an in-depth inventory of the city’s lakes found that 85% had water that could only be used for irrigation and industrial cooling.

Not a single lake had suitable water for drinking or bathing.

Will Cape Town be the first city to run out of water?

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Pollution in Bangalore’s lakes is rife

3. Beijing

The World Bank classifies water scarcity as when people in a determined location receive less than 1,000 cubic metres of fresh water per person a year.

In 2014, each of the more than 20 million inhabitants of Beijing had only 145 cubic metres.

China is home to almost 20% of the world’s population but has only 7% of the world’s fresh water.

A Columbia University study estimates that the country’s reserves declined 13% between 2000 and 2009.

And there’s also a pollution problem. Official figures from 2015 showed that 40% of Beijing’s surface water was polluted to the point of not being useful even for agriculture or industrial use.

The Chinese authorities have tried to address the problem by creating massive water diversion projects. They have also introduced educational programmes, as well as price hikes for heavy business users.

4. Cairo

Once crucial to the establishment of one of the world’s greatest civilisations, the River Nile is struggling in modern times.

It is the source of 97% of Egypt’s water but also the destination of increasing amounts of untreated agricultural, and residential waste.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The Nile provides 97% of Egypt’s water supply

World Health Organization figures show that Egypt ranks high among lower middle-income countries in terms of the number of deaths related to water pollution.

The UN estimates critical shortages in the country by 2025.

5. Jakarta

Like many coastal cities, the Indonesian capital faces the threat of rising sea levels.

But in Jakarta the problem has been made worse by direct human action. Because less than half of the city’s 10 million residents have access to piped water, illegal digging of wells is rife. This practice is draining the underground aquifers, almost literally deflating them.

As a consequence, about 40% of Jakarta now lies below sea level, according to World Bank estimates.

To make things worse, aquifers are not being replenished despite heavy rain because the prevalence of concrete and asphalt means that open fields cannot absorb rainfall.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Illegal well-drilling is making the Indonesian capital more vulnerable to flooding

6. Moscow

One-quarter of the world’s fresh water reserves are in Russia, but the country is plagued by pollution problems caused by the industrial legacy of the Soviet era.

That is specifically worrying for Moscow, where the water supply is 70% dependent on surface water.

Official regulatory bodies admit that 35% to 60% of total drinking water reserves in Russia do not meet sanitary standards

7. Istanbul

According to official Turkish government figures, the country is technically in a situation of a water stress, since the per capita supply fell below 1,700 cubic metres in 2016.

Local experts have warned that the situation could worsen to water scarcity by 2030.

Image copyright AFP
Image caption A 10-month long drought dried up this lake near Istanbul

In recent years, heavily populated areas like Istanbul (14 million inhabitants) have begun to experience shortages in the drier months.

The city’s reservoir levels declined to less than 30 percent of capacity at the beginning of 2014.

8. Mexico City

Water shortages are nothing new for many of the 21 million inhabitants of the Mexican capital.

One in five get just a few hours from their taps a week and another 20% have running water for just part of the day.

The city imports as much as 40% of its water from distant sources but has no large-scale operation for recycling wastewater. Water losses because of problems in the pipe network are also estimated at 40%.

9. London

Of all the cities in the world, London is not the first that springs to mind when one thinks of water shortages.

The reality is very different. With an average annual rainfall of about 600mm (less than the Paris average and only about half that of New York), London draws 80% of its water from rivers (the Thames and Lea).

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption London has a water waste rate of 25%

According to the Greater London Authority, the city is pushing close to capacity and is likely to have supply problems by 2025 and “serious shortages” by 2040.

It looks likely that hosepipe bans could become more common in the future

10. Tokyo

The Japanese capital enjoys precipitation levels similar to that of Seattle on the US west coast, which has a reputation for rain. Rainfall, however, is concentrated during just four months of the year.

That water needs to be collected, as a drier-than-expected rainy season could lead to a drought. At least 750 private and public buildings in Tokyo have rainwater collection and utilisation systems.

Home to more than 30 million people, Tokyo has a water system that depends 70% on surface water (rivers, lakes, and melted snow).

Recent investment in the pipeline infrastructure aims also to reduce waste by leakage to only 3% in the near future.

11. Miami

The US state of Florida is among the five US states most hit by rain every year. However, there is a crisis brewing in its most famous city, Miami.

An early 20th Century project to drain nearby swamps had an unforeseen result; water from the Atlantic Ocean contaminated the Biscayne Aquifer, the city’s main source of fresh water.

Miami's sea font

Although the problem was detected in the 1930s, seawater still leaks in, especially because the American city has experienced faster rates of sea level rise, with water breaching underground defence barriers installed in recent decades.

Neighbouring cities are already struggling. Hallandale Beach, which is just a few miles north of Miami, had to close six of its eight wells due to saltwater intrusion.

Researchers find unsafe levels of industrial chemicals in drinking water of 6 million Americans

Drinking water supplies serving more than six million Americans contain unsafe levels of a widely used class of industrial chemicals linked to potentially serious health problems, according to a new study from Harvard University researchers.

The chemicals — known as polyfluoroalkyl and perfluoroalkyl substances, or PFASs — have been used for decades in a range of industrial and commercial products, including non-stick coatings on pans, food wrappers, water-repellent clothing and firefighting foam. Long-term exposure has been linked to increased risks of kidney cancer, thyroid problems, high cholesterol and hormone disruption, among other issues.

“Virtually all Americans are exposed to these compounds,” said Xindi Hu, the study’s lead author. “They never break down. Once they are released into the environment, they are there.”

As part of the study, which was published Tuesday in Environmental Science & Technology Letters, the researchers examined concentrations of six types of PFAS chemicals in drinking water supplies around the country. The data came from more than 36,000 samples collected by the Environmental Protection Agency between 2013 and 2015.

They also looked at sites where the chemicals are commonly found — industrial plants that use them in manufacturing, military bases and civilian airports where fire-fighting foam is used and wastewater treatment plants.

What they found: 194 of 4,864 water supplies across nearly three dozen states had detectable levels of the chemicals. Sixty-six of those water supplies, serving about six million people, had at least one sample that exceeded the EPA’s recommended safety limit of 70 parts per trillion for two types of chemicals — perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA).

“It’s a big problem in a lot of communities,” said Richard Clapp, professor emeritus at Boston University’s school of public health. “It’s happening in a lot of places.”

From Decatur, Ala., to Merrimack, N.H., residents have been wrestling with high levels of the potentially harmful chemicals, and public officials have been scrambling to figure out how to prevent them from contaminating drinking water supplies.

The federal government does not currently regulate PFAS chemicals. But they are on the EPA’s list of “unregulated contaminants” that the agency monitors, with the goal of restricting those that most endanger public health. Partly because the rules that it must follow are complicated and contentious, officials have failed to successfully regulate any new contaminant in two decades.

Only once since the 1990s has the EPA come close to imposing a new standard — for perchlorate, a chemical that sometimes occurs naturally but also is found in explosives, road flares and rocket fuel. It has turned up in the drinking water of over 16 million people.

Joel Beauvais, who leads the EPA’s Office of Water, told the Post earlier this year that the system mandated by Congress demands the agency move deliberately. “It’s a rather intensive process to get one of these drinking-water regulations across the finish line,” he said.

Could your drinking water be contaminated?

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There are reasons for that, Beauvais said at the time. A substance may occur in only a very small number of drinking-water systems or might occur only in extremely low levels. Before the EPA imposes new limitations on the nation’s water utilities, it has to prove that there is a meaningful opportunity to improve public health. “These are very consequential regulations,” Beauvais said. “They are consequential from a health perspective. They are consequential from an economic perspective.”

In the wake of that advisory, at least one Alabama community declared its tap water unfit to drink and told residents to avoid it until officials could install a temporary, high-powered filter for the water supply. Some communities in New Hampshire received bottled water while authorities considered ways to address high levels of the contaminants in nearby groundwater. A company in upstate New York agreed to install carbon filters in private homes where high levels of the chemicals had been detected.

Clapp said that as evidence has mounted about the potential health risks posed by PFAS compounds and how ubiquitous they are, few people would argue that they should remain unregulated.

“We’re definitely overdue,” he said. “It’s not a question of whether, but rather at what level should they be regulated.”

Separately on Tuesday, another Harvard-led study, published in Environmental Health Perspectives, examined the effect of PFAS exposure in about 600 adolescents from the Faroe Islands off the coast of Denmark. Individuals exposed to the substances at a young age displayed lower-than-expected levels of antibodies to tetanus and diphtheria after being immunized, raising the prospect that the chemical exposure could be reducing the effectiveness of childhood vaccines.

Is Chlorine in Our Drinking Water and Swimming Pools a Health Hazard?

Pools are always attractive on those hot sunny days! You know those days I’m talking about; all you can imagine is throwing on your shorts or bathing suit and going out to the local pool to cool off on the hot summer day. And it’s no surprise…. water has always been a source of life and renewal on Earth.

Chlorine water hazards

But recently, water has become a major source of controversy, largely due to the amount of toxic crap that makes it into our tap water. Fluoride. Pesticides. Industrial pollution. The countless chemicals present in our water supplies today pose long term risks to our health; something science has known for decades. And although the community is waking up to the damaging effects of fluoride and other toxins, few people consider the effects of chlorine – a chemical that is added not just to our drinking water but to our swimming pools as well.

Chlorine and Swimming Pools

Do you think twice before you jump in a stream or river, but not before you jump into a chlorinated swimming pool?

Swimming is an excellent form of exercise. But like many activities, swimming in a pool has its downside. To maintain an artificial swimming pool takes a constant effort to disinfect them because the water is essentially stagnant, meaning it doesn’t move. When water is stagnant it becomes home to bacteria, algae, mosquitoes and other bugs, while water that is constantly moving remains fresh, oxygenated, and endlessly and more welcoming for swimmers. The most common way we keep our pools disinfected is with chlorine.

Despite our attempts to avoid disease by disinfecting our pools and tap water, an increasing body of research suggests that disinfectant agents like chlorine may pose their own health hazards.

Swimming in chlorinated pools, particularly indoor pools, has been shown to put kids at higher risk for developing respiratory illnesses, including asthma and hay fever. A 2004 study revealed that swimmers experienced breathing problems similar to those associated with asthma after several minutes of swimming in chlorinated water, even where chlorine levels were below the level recommended for disinfecting swimming pools.

According to researcher Arthur J. Williams, MD, of the Sport Science Institute of South Africa:

We’ve long suspected that chlorine has an adverse effect on the respiratory health of swimmers… Now we know the likelihood increases significantly with the concentration of chlorine used. Swimmers should be aware of the concentration of chlorine exposure they receive, and those who care for pools should closely monitor chlorine levels.

Let’s Test a Theory

After reading Dr. Williams’ statement I began to wonder….

Our lungs have small fibrous hairs called cilia. They help with removing toxins from the lungs so that the proper amount of oxygen is being absorbed into our blood. Similarly, a plant’s root system also has fibrous hairs which release hormones that attract fungi that live in the soil, and those fungi help to retrieve various minerals from the soil that help the plant to thrive.

So I did some experimenting, regrowing tomato plants from root cuttings using two different water samples; one using chlorinated drinking water, the other with water that had been treated with the Drops Of Balance water detox product. Over time, I found that the plants left in chlorinated tap-water produced smooth white roots, whereas the plant growing in detoxed water produced larger roots, with small fibrous hairs coming off them. The presence of root hairs on the non-chlorinated sample is a clear indication of a healthier, more effective root system.

While this was by no-means a peer reviewed double-blind study, the comparison is quite revealing. Roots devoid of fibrous hairs are unable to function to their full capacity, and it seems that breathing in chlorine vapour in swimming pools has a similar effect on the cilia in our respiratory system. The function of both mechanisms is to ensure adequate bodily nutrition (be it minerals from soil or oxygen from the air) and when that function is hampered, it results in deficiency — in plants, it manifests as mineral deficiency and in humans, oxygen deficiency.

This leads me to wonder, what is the consequence when chlorine is absorbed into the body through our skin?

Chlorine and Your Skin

Your skin is exceptionally absorbent. Anyone who has ever used a hand lotion or a nicotine patch can attest to that. In fact absorption is one of the skin’s main functions. Unfortunately it isn’t very selective; it will absorb pretty much anything it is exposed to…. and that includes chlorine.

According to the New York Department of Health:

Chlorine can damage the skin and cause premature signs of aging. Even small amounts of chlorine can be harmful over time. When you shower, heat opens your pores and allows the chlorine (from tap water) to seep into your skin. Chlorine strips the skin of its natural oils and causes it to dry and crack….

When chlorine enters the body as a result of breathing, swallowing, or skin contact, it reacts with water to produce acids. The acids are corrosive and damage cells in the body on contact.

Chlorine and Your Drinking Water

In a study published by PubMed entitled “Chlorination, chlorination by-products, and cancer: a meta-analysis”, researchers found “a positive association between consumption of chlorination by-products in drinking water and bladder and rectal cancer in humans”. Specifically, researchers found that those living in areas with highly-chlorinated water were 83 per cent more likely to develop a tumour than those in low-chlorine areas.

In addition there is evidence that adding disinfectants such as chlorine to water encourages other by-products to form through contact with organic materials. This contact happens during the water treatment process (ie. contact with dead leaves and other organic matter) and as chlorine comes into contact with human body fluids, cosmetics and sunscreens etc.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies some chlorination by-products as a “possible causes of cancer”. (Find out more about how cancer-causing substances are classified). And according to the Canadian Cancer Society, studies have shown that trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs), which are the most common chlorination by-products, can cause cancer in laboratory animals.

So this all begs the question….

Why is a chemical with so many health risks routinely added to our drinking and swimming water?

Have we seriously gotten to the point where we can be convinced that something extremely toxic is good for us, just because our questionable governments advocate it?

Where to Next?

This sounds rather alarming doesn’t it? Does it mean we should keep kids out of the pool? And what about our drinking water?

Of course, you have to make the best decision for yourself and for your family. Most studies concern people who are regularly exposed to chlorine, so a few visits to the wrong swimming pool are unlikely to cause long term health problems provided you minimize other forms of exposure.

There are several things you can do….

  • To mitigate the problem at home, I use a shower head water filter which I bought locally from a plumbing supplies store. It attaches to my shower head, and removes most toxins (except fluoride unfortunately!) from my bath and shower water with no disruption to water pressure or flow.
  • I also use the Drops Of Balance water purifying system which involves adding a natural solution of concentrated ionic sulfate minerals to water your drinking water. These minerals separate dissolved and invisible contaminants from the water solution, turning them visible and insoluble. The insoluble matter becomes heavier and sedimentary, which allow the contaminants to be easily filtered, or if ingested, to pass through your body through normal excretion.
  • If you have an artificial swimming pool, you may like to consider converting your chlorinated pool to a saltwater pool. Most local pool suppliers are able to help you with this conversion, which eliminates the need to add chlorine and other chemicals to your swimming water to maintain it.
  • For those who live close to the coast, next time you feel like a swim, head to the ocean instead of the local pool. Beside avoiding chlorine exposure, getting your feet in the sand is a great way to reconnect with nature and thenatural salts are great for your health.

Until the community becomes better informed about its dangers, chlorine will no doubt remain in our drinking and swimming water – along with the countless other toxins that inexplicably turn up in our water supplies. But with knowledge and a bit of help, you can protect yourself and your family from the damaging effects of exposure.

Be well.

The Art of Drinking Water: 25 Ayurvedic Tips for a Happily Hydrated Body

How much water should I drink?

For years, most of us have heard the suggestion that the best way to consume water is drink “8 cups of water a day.” Unfortunately it isn’t really that simple. In fact, each of us has a unique constitution and lifestyle that actually has different requirements to stay hydrated. The amount of re-hydration we need on a given day is directly related to how much hydration we have lost through the loss of bodily fluids.

When we eat, we need to sip just enough fluid with our meal to make our food somewhat liquid. In addition, if we can’t digest our water it doesn’t matter how much we drink, we never really get hydrated. It may seem strange to think that we have to digest our water but, just like anything that we swallow, water has to be digested and transformed into a suitable fluid for our body’s nutritional needs. We have probably all had the experience of feeling bloated and overly full after drinking water—this is a sign that it is not being properly transformed.

And that is actually the most important factor. Our body is not like a sponge. Our bodily tissues don’t just immediately soak up the water we drink and suddenly become hydrated. If we drink too much water, just as when we eat too much food, we can dampen our digestive fire. Drinking too little water can also weaken our digestion.

The simplest way to know how much water we should drink is to drink when we are thirsty. Modern nutritionists say this is probably too late, as we are already overly dehydrated by this point—but this may be because most of us have lost touch with the subtle signs of our thirst. It may take some time to redevelop that sensitivity.

n general, all of us will tend to need to drink more water from the middle of summer through the autumn and less from mid-winter through the spring.

When Should I Drink Water?

Again, the best rule of thumb is to drink when you are thirsty.

Drinking cold water (or any cold beverage) constricts the flow of blood to the digestive tract, making digestion more sluggish. By now many of us have heard that we shouldn’t drink beverages with our meal, but when we eat, we do need to sip just enough fluid with our meal to make our food somewhat liquid. This is why many cultures around the world include a small cup of tea or soup with every meal. In some cuisines, it is common to drink a bowl of broth before eating.
One way to start to get in touch with the sensation of thirst is to drink a glass of water large enough to quench your thirst when you wake up. Wait at least an hour before eating breakfast. Then again at least an hour before your next meal (at least 1.5-2 hours after eating) drink a glass of water. If you normally eat 3 meals a day, then repeat this before your next meal. The size of the glass of water should vary, based on what you want to drink at the moment.

Cooking Your Water

Cooking our food and drinks is a process of pre-digestion. This means that our body doesn’t have to work as hard to get benefit from our nourishment. In fact, it makes the nourishment more available to our body.

Using clear spring water or filtered water (tap water is also usually fine), boil it for 10 minutes. This water cooled to room temperature and kept in a covered container is said to be easy to digest and particularly good for soothing inflammatory (Pitta) conditions in the body.

Drinking the boiled water while it is still warm is even more medicinal. Hot water is said to stimulate hunger and aid digestion of food. It is good for the throat, easily digested, and cleanses the urinary bladder. In addition, it relieves hiccups, bloating and aggravation of Vata and Kapha doshas. It can be helpful in reducing fever and easing cough and asthma. It helps the body get rid of accumulated, undigested food and can soothe pain in the hips and back.

In contrast, drinking cold water (or any cold beverage) constricts the flow of blood to the digestive tract, making digestion more sluggish. This is made much worse when the cold beverage is taken with a meal.

Adding Oomph to Your Water

Sometimes it can be helpful to add some spices or herbs to water to make it more absorbable—and more interesting. This is essentially what we are doing when we make tea. Here are some spices that can make your water even more medicinal:

Cumin, coriander and fennel seeds

Add about 5 seeds of each for every ½ c. of water when you are boiling it. Strain out the seeds before drinking. This blend is particularly good for stimulating digestion during gentle cleanses.

Sandalwood, cardamom or mint

These cooling herbs can soothe Pitta irritability, especially during the hot summer months. A pinch of powder herb or a few leaves of mint will work nicely. If you are used to drinking hot mint tea, try just putting the mint into cooled water. It has a really nice cooling effect on a hot day!


Uncooked honey added to cooled water (about a ½ tsp. or so) can be a good aid to weight loss and helps to clear excess Kapha during the spring.


A pinch of ginger powder in your morning glass of water enkindles your digestive fire and can be helpful for reducing Vata and Kapha excess.


Yes, gold. In this case, you are not really adding gold to your water, but just putting gold into the pot with the water when you boil it. It should be 22k or higher. I use a simple gold ring without any stones (gemstones have other effects that may be undesirable). Gold is said to greatly enhance immunity.



In fact, 30–59 percent of U.S. adults who try to lose weight increase their water intake (1, 2). Many studies show that drinking more water may benefit weight loss and maintenance (3).

This article explains how drinking water can help you lose weight.

Drinking Water Can Make You Burn More Calories

Most of the studies listed below looked at the effect of drinking one, 0.5 liter (17 oz) serving of water. Drinking water increases the amount of calories you burn, which is known as resting energy expenditure (4).

In adults, resting energy expenditure has been shown to increase by 24–30 percent within 10 minutes of drinking water. This lasts at least 60 minutes (5, 6). Supporting this, one study of overweight and obese children found a 25 percent increase in resting energy expenditure after drinking cold water (7).

A study of overweight women examined the effects of increasing water intake to more than 1 liter (34 oz) per day. They found that over a 12-month period, this resulted in an extra 2 kg (4.4 lbs) of weight loss (8).

Since these women didn’t make any lifestyle changes except to drink more water, these results are very impressive. Additionally, both of these studies indicate that drinking 0.5 liters (17 oz) of water results in an extra 23 calories burned. On a yearly basis, that sums up to roughly 17,000 calories—or more than 2 kg (4.4 lbs) of fat.

Several other studies have monitored overweight people who drank 1-1.5 liters (34–50 oz) of water daily for a few weeks. They found a significant reduction in weight, body mass index (BMI), waist circumference and body fat (8, 9, 10).

These results may be even more impressive when the water is cold. When you drink cold water, your body uses extra calories to warm the water up to body temperature.

Bottom Line: Drinking 0.5 liters (17 oz) of water may increase the amount of calories burned for at least an hour. Some studies show that this can lead to modest weight loss.

Drinking Water Before Meals Can Reduce Appetite

Some people claim that drinking water before a meal reduces appetite. There actually seems to be some truth behind this, but almost exclusively in middle-aged and older adults (11). Studies of older adults have shown that drinking water before each meal may increase weight loss by 2 kg (4.4 lbs) over a 12-week period (4, 11).

In one study, middle-aged overweight and obese participants who drank water before each meal lost 44 percent more weight, compared to a group that did not drink more water (4). Another study also showed that drinking water before breakfast reduced the amount of calories consumed during the meal by 13 percent (12).

Although this may be very beneficial for middle-aged and older people, studies of younger individuals have not shown the same impressive reduction in calorie intake.

Bottom Line: Drinking water before meals may reduce appetite in middle-aged and older individuals. This decreases calorie intake, leading to weight loss.

Drinking More Water is Linked to Reduced Calorie Intake and a Lower Risk of Weight Gain

Since water is naturally calorie-free, it is generally linked with reduced calorie intake. This is mainly because you then drink water instead of other beverages, which are often high in calories and sugar (13, 14, 15).

Observational studies have shown that people who drink mostly water have up to a 9 percent (or 200 calories) lower calorie intake, on average (16, 17). Drinking water may also help prevent long-term weight gain. In general, the average person gains about 1.45 kg (3.2 lbs) every 4 years (18).

This amount may be reduced by:

  • Adding 1 cup of water: Increasing your daily water consumption by 1 cup may reduce this weight gain by 0.13 kg (0.23 lbs).
  • Replacing other drinks with water: Substituting a serving of a sugar-sweetened beverage with 1 cup of water may reduce the 4-year weight gain by 0.5 kg (1.1 lbs).

It is especially important to encourage children to drink water, as it can help prevent them from becoming overweight or obese (17, 3).

A recent, school-based study aimed to reduce obesity rates by encouraging children to drink water. They installed water fountains in 17 schools and provided classroom lessons about water consumption for 2nd and 3rd graders.

After one school year, the risk of obesity had been reduced by a whopping 31 percent in the schools where water intake was increased (19).

Bottom Line: Drinking more water may lead to decreased calorie intake and reduce the risk of long-term weight gain and obesity, especially in children.


How Much Water Should You Drink?

Many health authorities recommend drinking eight, 8-oz glasses of water (about 2 liters) per day.

However, this number is completely random. As with so many things, water requirements depend entirely on the individual (20).

For example, people who sweat a lot or exercise regularly may need more water than those who are not very active.

Older people and breast-feeding mothers also need to monitor their water intake more closely (21).

Keep in mind that you also get water from many foods and beverages, such as coffee, tea, meat,fish, milk and especially fruits and vegetables.

As a good rule of thumb, you should always drink water when you’re thirsty and drink enough to quench your thirst.

If you find you have a headache, are in a bad mood, are constantly hungry or have trouble concentrating, then you may suffer from mild dehydration. Drinking more water may help fix this (22, 23, 24).

Based on the studies, drinking 1-2 liters of water per day should be sufficient to help with weight loss.

Here’s how much water you should drink, in different measurements:

  • Liters: 1–2.
  • Ounces: 34–67.
  • Glasses (8-oz): 4–8.

However, this is just a general guideline. Some people may need less, while others may need a lot more.

Also, it is not recommended to drink too much water either, as it may cause water toxicity. This has even caused death in extreme cases, such as during water drinking contests.

Bottom Line: According to the studies, 1–2 liters of water per day is enough to assist with weight loss, especially when consumed before meals.

Take Home Message

Water can be really helpful for weight loss. It is 100 percent calorie-free, helps you burn more calories and may even suppress your appetite if consumed before meals. The benefits are even greater when you replace sugary beverages with water. It is a very easy way to cut back on sugar and calories.

However, keep in mind that you’re going to have to do a lot more than just drink water if you need to lose a significant amount of weight.

Water is just one, very small piece of the puzzle.

Drinking Water in the Morning.

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It is said that drinking about 7 to 8 glasses of water daily is important for your health. One thing many people do not know is that having the first glass of water as soon as you wake up also comes with its therapeutic benefits. This traditional Ayurvedic treatment has benefits for conditions that range from asthma, pain to even cancer. How to drink water in the morning for best results?

Why do We Need to Drink Water in the Morning?

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* 70% of the human body content is water, and so water plays an important role in the proper functioning of your body.

* The human brain cells contain about 85% of water.

* 75% of muscles is water

* Bones also contain about 25% water

* 82% of blood consists of water.

It is also helpful to consume foods that contain lots of water; for example soups (broth-based), vegetables and fruits.

What Are the Benefit of Drinking Water in the Morning?

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It is a long known secret that drinking water as soon as you get up, i.e. before eating anything, is a good way to purify your internal system. One of the most important results of undergoing this treatment is colon cleansing, which enables better absorption of nutrients from various foods. When there is production of haematopoiesis, better known as “new blood”, you will have immense body restorative effects and you can even be cured of existing ailments. Drinking water the first thing in the morning has the following benefits:

1. Make your skin glow. Water is known to purge toxins from your blood, and as a result you get glowing skin.

2. Renew cells. Drinking water first thing in the morning increases the rate at which new muscle and blood cells are produced.

3. Balance the lymph system. When you drink water first thing in the morning on a daily basis, you help balance your body’s lymph system. Lymph glands found in your lymph system fight infections helping you to perform your daily activities. They also balance the fluids in your body.

4. Lose weight. When you consume about 16 ounces of water (chilled), you will boost your body’s metabolism by abut 24% thus help you lose those extra pounds.

5. Purify the colon. When you drink water after you have woken up before eating anything, you are purifying your colon thereby making nutrients absorption easy.

6. Cures illnesses and diseases. Drinking water first thing in the morning has been proven to cure illnesses such as vomiting, throat disease, menstrual and cancer disorders, eye diseases, diarrhea, urine disease, kidney disease, meningitis, TB, Arthritis, headaches among others.

How to drink Water in the Morning for Best Results

* Drink 1.5 liters (5/6 glasses) of water immediately after waking up.

* Avoid drinking or eating anything else for an hour before and after drinking the water.

* Do not drink beverages that contain alcohol the previous night.

At first, you may have a hard time drinking 6 glasses of water at a go. However, it becomes easier as your body gradually becomes accustomed to the routine. When starting, you can slightly modify the routine as follows; consume 4 glasses of water, pause for about 2 minutes, then drink the remaining 2 glasses of water.


This Ingredient Can Protect Your Brain From Fluoride Damage

It seems that these days just about anything you touch can give you cancer and when everything is being put out there it can sometimes be hard to sift through the trash to find the jewels.


We have all heard of the harmful effect of fluoride damage and the harmful effects of fluoride on the body. There can be no debate on this; it is harmful no matter what anyone says, it is harmful. With that being said, our government finds it necessary to put fluoride in the majority of the drinking water you will find here in America. The toothpaste companies find it necessary to put it into out toothpaste and mouthwash, all three of these things being something we encounter on a daily basis.

There have been many studies done on the symptoms of prolonged fluoride exposure; the neurological effects should have the attention of us all. Alzheimer’s rates are plummeting, our IQ’s are becoming lower, and overall the effects on our brains are phenomenal. Phenomenal being bad! In 2006 researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health did a review that shows five industrial chemicals as developmental neurotoxins. Poisons like lead, methylmercury, polychlorinated iphenyls, arsenic, and toluene. And since the study was conducted six more have been identified.

“Fluoride seems to fit in with lead, mercury, and other poisons that cause chemical brain drain… The effect of each toxicant may seem small, but the combined damage on a population scale can be serious, especially because the brain power of the next generation is crucial to all of us.”

A study done in 2012 suggested that children in areas with more fluoridation had lower IQ’s than those who lived in less fluoridated areas. This is one of the many studies that suggests this, and in fact fluoride has been confirmed to be a neurotoxin by many professionals in the medical industry.

What can you do to help with this? A new study has found that curcumin and active ingredient in turmeric that is known to have antioxidant properties, and it helps to treat neurological disease.

“Our study thus demonstrate that daily single dose of 120 ppm F result in highly significant increases in the LPO as well as neurodegenerative changes in neuron cell bodies of selected hippocampal regions. Supplementation with curcumin significantly reduce the toxic effect of F to near normal level by augmenting the antioxidant defense through its scavenging property and provide an evidence of having therapeutic role against oxidative stress mediated neurodegeneration.”

You can also use holy basil to extract the fluoride from your drinking water, and there are also many chemical free toothpaste recipes that will be beneficial.


Turning a Tree Branch Into a Water Filter.

A false-color image of tree branch filter.In search of a low-cost and simple solution for filtering dirty water in developing nations, researchers have rediscovered the humble tree. A piece of freshly cut sapwood from pine trees can remove 99% of Escherichia coli bacteria in water, scientists report in PLOS ONE. Dirty water is a major cause of mortality in the developing world, and the old-school technology, which contains xylem (a porous tissue that can remove particles), could save millions of lives a year.
Figure 1 Xylem structure.Effective point-of-use devices for providing safe drinking water are urgently needed to reduce the global burden of waterborne disease. Here we show that plant xylem from the sapwood of coniferous trees – a readily available, inexpensive, biodegradable, and disposable material – can remove bacteria from water by simple pressure-driven filtration. Approximately 3 cm3 of sapwood can filter water at the rate of several liters per day, sufficient to meet the clean drinking water needs of one person. The results demonstrate the potential of plant xylem to address the need for pathogen-free drinking water in developing countries and resource-limited settings.

Tap water, well water, distilled water…Which one is best for you?

Water… This amazing matter found everywhere on our beautiful planet and in ourselves.

Without it, there would simply be no Life of any forms. Water is the source of any life forms, from the creation of our planet to the last state of the human evolution passing by the survival of the worlds flora to the air we breath. Water is THE most important element on Earth and without it nothing would exist.

Some people always like to argue with me saying that Water is not the most important element to survive and that we could live without it as long as there is Oxygen in the air. Obviously, those people have no idea and knowledge of basic biology. Here is the reason why Water is the most important element for survival:

When you hear about Scientist and Astronomers looking for other life forms and Earth like planets that could maybe sustain Life, the first thing they are looking for is Water and nothing else. Now think about for a second how oxygen is produced. Oxygen is produced by plants and trees around the world. Plants and trees uses CO2 (Carbon dioxide) to survive and produce O2 (oxygen) as a waste product that is then released into the air and therefore allows us to breath. However, in order for a plant or tree to survive, it also needs water, and a lot of it. Without water, there would be no plants and trees, without plants and trees there would be no oxygen, without oxygen and water there would be no Life. It is all a circle called the circle of Life, that goes round and round but always comes back to the same point, in this case: Water is the source of Life and survival and without it, there would be plain nothing!

Now, let’s focus more on us, humans. Our body is made of 70% water. Water is part of our natural and organic structure. Water in our body plays a major role in keeping the body functions at maximum levels by a process called hydration. Proper hydration of your body on a daily basis is essential and the purest water must be used to sustain and offer the best benefits to the body.

Now, there are a lot of different types of water out there that you can drink to satisfy your thirst and hydration. However, like everything else, some water are better than others and that is what we are going to look at now.

Let’s start by the most popular of all, TAP WATER. Well, to make it simple, like my Naturopathic teacher liked to say to us, shame on you if you drink tap water lol. Tap water comes from collected waters from grounds, river, lakes, reservoir or recycled and then is treated with a bunch of different chemicals to “purify it”. They are more than 350 chemicals detected in most tap water, out of these 350, 4 are of major concern for our health. Chlorine, which is added to kill bacterias has been showed to be carcinogen in high levels. Chlorine destroys your natural guts flora thus depletes the immunity, leaked to colon and bladder cancer, dries skin and hair out and could lead to vaso-constrictive effects for asthmatics if used in a steam form. Fluoride, as most of you know, is a poison added to many of our everyday products like tap water, toothpaste, cheap commercial teas, beauty products, etc… fluoride is a toxic substance, leading to mainly health problems like bones, dental, neurological, mental and emotional disorders as well as affecting the memory and intelligence of individuals. The problem with fluoride is that most people are not aware that they are two main forms of it, the first being SODIUM FLUORIDE, which is an aluminium waste product sold to companies by chemical industries instead of paying for the aluminium waste removal for destruction. Sodium fluoride is used as additive agents as well as preservative and has absolutely no beneficial effect for humans. Sodium fluoride get stocked in the body and builds up instead of being flushed out, that is when toxicity arise. The other form of fluoride is CALCIUM FLUORIDE which is not used in common daily products unfortunately for obvious non profitable reasons. Calcium fluoride is a natural compound found on Earth, proven to be much more efficient, safe and natural than sodium fluoride, do not lead to toxicity and build up in the body as it is processed and flushed out very easily via natural excretions, support bone and dental health. So quit the sodium fluoride loaded products, read all labels and choose fluoride free, supplement in calcium fluoride via fresh balance diet, mostly via fruits, veggies, all raw on a daily basis and if you have dental or bone issues, CALC FLUOR  as homeopathic remedy is the best to complement and help the body to self heal. Then there are nitrates and aluminium sulfates which as fluoride and chlorine are inorganic compounds and not recognized by the body. Those two compounds depletes vitamins, minerals and hormonal levels and linked to neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s, dementia. etc….

Now let’s talk about the second most common form of water we know, which is the BOTTLED WATER. Bottled water is found anywhere. This water is classified by the source it comes from, either be spa, spring, factory and it’s mineral content. It can be found either still or sparkling. Sparkling bottled water is a water that has been carbonated either naturally or artificially with carbonate. Sparkling water can interfere with digestion if consumed while eating. In any cases, if you drink bottled water, which most of us do, always choose the natural spring one or bottled at source and read the label to see if any fluoride has been added. However, bottled water is still not the best water you can drink as it is still a chemically processed form and in most cases high levels on chlorine.

SPRING WATER as said above is a form of natural water rising straight to Earth’s surface from underground natural reserves. Even though this kind of water is better than tap and bottled, always look out for the environmental area, farming, pollutant, close highways and cities all depletes the pure state of spring water. The best spring water i have found so far is when i went hiking in Switzerland, at 2000 meters altitude, in the middle of the mountains with nothing around but Nature. Untouched, unspoiled water that the locals like to call the Source of Life.

REVERSE OSMOSIS water is a form of water that has been filtered through microscopic filters which removes all minerals and toxins, pesticides and herbicides. However, nitrates can still remain, mainly nitrates from fetilizers. This water is about 80 to 95% pure. There is a way to get reverse osmosis water at 99%pure by de-ionoze it with a resin which attracts and removes all remaining impurities. Excellent form of water.

Now the last one, DISTILLED water which is considered to be the best form of water for the body. Distilled water is made by boiling it to create a steam and then collect this pure steam which is free of any pollutant, chemicals, viruses, bacteria, minerals etc… the result of this is a 100% pure water. Distilled water is acidic and therefore excellent in the removal of heavy metals and toxic inorganic matter build up in the body. Distilled water is used in the Gerson therapy for cancer treatments. Patients raises their Ph levels by drinking all fresh raw juices alongside distilled water to help push away the toxins and facilitate natural excretion and elimination. Distilled water is the most hydrating water there is for your cells and contrary to certain rumors and myths made by modern medical researches, it does not pull out your organic minerals from your body. Do not store distilled water in plastic bottle due to its acidity.
So, what can we conclude of all this then?

Well, always look for the purest form of water, try out reverse osmosis or distill it yourself or even better if you have a natural source up high in the mountain with no negative environmental interference, go get some. Look at the labels, remember that inorganic compounds are not processed and well recognized by your body and are not eliminated naturally like it should, so they build up in your body leading to hardening and toxicity, therefore imbalances and disease. Organic and natural is the key to survival. Fresh, natural water, 1.5 to 2 litres a day alongside a proper, balance, fresh nutrition, some forms of exercises, positive thinking, chillax times is what your body needs. Just remember to not drink while eating. It dilutes the stomach acids and make the digestion harder. Drink 30 minutes before and after each meal for maximum stomach functions.

Water is source of Life, source of energy so respect it, learn from it, love it and most importantly don’t waste it!


4 ways to remove fluoride from tap water.

Fluoride has a dubious history starting with the mass fluoridation of people under Nazi rule. In recent years, there has been a push to remove fluoride from the tap water in the US, behind most European countries which have already removed the poisonous chemical from their water supplies.

Most politicians erroneously support fluoridation due to heavy lobbying in favor of the chemical, but more and more activists and consumers aremaking a stand for their water supply. It may only be a few years until we totally eradicate this twisted fluoridation scheme, but here is one way to remove fluoride and 99.9% of all other contaminants from your tap water: Distillation.

Once you are aware of the negative impact of fluoride on your health—and especially if you live in an area where the water is fluoridated—you will have to decide what to do about it. To complicate matters, fluoride is absorbed through the skin, and by inhalation. Showering and bathing in fluoridated water is also a problem. Fluoride is actually more dangerous when absorbed through the skin and/or lungs because it enters the bloodstream more easily, bypassing the gut where it binds with minerals from food.  When it is not feasible to remove the fluoride from your entire water supply, limiting time in the shower or bath and reducing the temperature of the water helps minimize the amount of fluoride absorbed.

To top it all off, fluoride is difficult to remove from water. Most water filter sales literature avoids the subject. When buying a water filter, you may be comforted by reading that the system you are purchasing removes 95 to 99% of contaminants, but if it does not specifically state that it removes fluoride, you can bet it doesn’t. Fluoride is a very small ion (atomic number 9). It cannot be “filtered” out of water.  At this time, fluoride removal is limited to four main methods discussed below.

How do I get the fluoride out of my water?

1 . Distillation
Distillation is capable of removing just about anything (except volatile compounds) from water.  If you have a distiller, you can remove fluoride. The obvious drawback to distillation is that the process is time and energy consumptive. Distillation also leaves the resulting water empty and lifeless. If you use distilled water you need to add minerals (salts) back to the water. (Read about salt and full-spectrum living water).  You should also consider structuring and energetically enhancing distilled water (returning the life force) using any of the methods in Chapters 11 and 12 of Dancing with Water. (Read about water’s liquid crystalline structure).

Here’s a video from our previous post about distilling water to remove fluoride from tap water:

2.  Reverse Osmosis
Reverse osmosis (RO) represents a reverse of normal osmotic processes. It relies on pressure and a semi-permeable membrane to remove contaminants from water. RO can remove between 90 and 95% of fluoride (depending on the efficiency of the system and depending on how well the system is maintained). Contaminants are trapped by the RO membrane and flushed away in the waste water. The process requires between 2 and 4 gallons of water to produce 1 gallon of RO water (depending on the quality of the water and the efficiency of the RO unit). Source water with an abundance of contaminants (including hard water) can reduce the efficiency of an RO system and it can shorten the life of the membrane.

Similar to distillation, RO has a good track record for removing almost everything from water. Quality RO systems include pre-filters to remove VOCs (volatile organic compounds), heavy metals, hard water minerals, and other contaminants that reduce the life of RO membranes. And similar to distillation, RO leaves water empty and lifeless. The addition of salts and the re-introduction of life force are necessary to bring RO water back to energetic compatibility with the human body.

3.  Activated alumina
Fluoride is strongly attracted to activated alumina (corundum/aluminum oxide) which has a large surface area with a huge array of tunnel-like pores. For this reason, activated alumina is the most commonly used fluoride removal media today. When used properly, it can remove up to 98% of the fluoride in water while also removing arsenic. The challenges with activated alumina are many. First of all, since the process works by ion exchange, the water must remain in contact with the media for an extended period of time—long enough for the fluoride to be adsorbed by the media. When the flow rate is faster than ¼ gallon/minute, there is not enough time to adsorb all the fluoride in the water. Another difficulty with activated alumina is that the media becomes saturated with fluoride. Depending on the amount of media in the system (how large the filter is) and on the amount of fluoride in the water, systems using activated alumina either need to be recharged or replaced often. The last difficulty with activated alumina is that aluminum is released into the treated water. This effectively trades one problem for another. Some systems address this; others do not.

There are many point-of-use filters that claim to remove fluoride using activated alumina. The problem with most of these systems is that they only work for a short period of time (usually far less than claimed) before they become saturated. The other difficulty is that point-of-use systems do not slow the flow rate enough to provide adequate time for adsorption.  Recent testing of a variety of these filters revealed that few functioned as claimed for more than a few weeks.  Unless the activated alumina can be cleaned and recharged or replaced regularly, and unless the flow rate is slow enough to allow time for adsorption, activated alumina may not be what you are looking for.

There are some “tank” type fluoride removal systems that are capable of working for many years with a backwashing and recharging cycle and an occasional topping off of the media. These systems are often used to remove fluoride from the whole home. Many consisder them the answer to the fluoride problem. They are not. The drawback to this type of system is an environmental problem. Caustic chemicals are required to backwash (sodium hydroxide) and to recharge (sulphuric acid) the media—chemicals that end up in the waste water. And when these “tanks” are eventually replaced, they end up in a landfill, loaded with fluoride, arsenic, lead, mercury and cadmuim.

4.  BC-Carbon
Bone-Char (BC) Carbon has been used for centuries to remove naturally-occurring fluoride from water. It works similar to the way bones in the human body attract fluoride.  Bone contains a porous matrix that is rich in surface ions. These can be readily replaced by fluoride and by some of the other contaminants that arrive along with fluoride (heavy metals).  Bone char effectively removes a number of contaminants.

When used alone, BC-Carbon can remove up to 90% of the fluoride in water. The efficiency of bone char can be improved by adding pre-filters that remove heavy metals and other contaminants before exposure to the BC-carbon. Bone char works best at a slightly acidic pH and may not work as well with hard water. This medium is being successfully incorporated in many systems where cartridges can be replaced as the media becomes saturated. But this method is also not without problems. Obviously, bone char is an organic medium. Medical grade bone char is important to ensure that the bone char itself is clean.

Sources: Natural Cures Not Medicine