Water: 10 false beliefs about the most precious food for the human body

Water: 10 false beliefs about the most precious food for the human body

Is it true that water rich in calcium can promote the formation of kidney stones? Is sparkling water bad for your health? Many curiosities revealed by the experts

Water is the main constituent of the human body and accounts for about 60% of body weight in adult males, 50 to 55% in females (characterized by a higher percentage of body fat than males), and up to 75% in a newborn. Drinking adequately during the day is essential and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has also ascertained a cause and effect relationship between the daily water intake and the maintenance of normal physical and cognitive functions.

However, there are still many false beliefs related to this extraordinary and vital food. From its effects on the line to those on health.

Body weight line and maintenance

For example, that water makes you fat. Water does not contain energy and weight changes due to the ingestion or elimination of water are momentary and deceptive. And it's not true that drinking a lot of water causes more water retention. This condition, when it is not due to particular pathologies, depends on the salt or other substances contained in food, not on the amount of water we ingest, the experts of Crea assure in the Guidelines for healthy eating (2018 revision).

Another false myth concerns cellulite: it is not true that it is necessary to prefer low-mineralized waters over more mineralized waters to maintain the figure or “cure cellulite”. The salts contained in the water and the water itself favor the elimination of those contained in excess in the body. In children, in particular, it would be good not to use only low-mineral water, but should alternate them with those richer in minerals, suggests the team of experts.

Calcium and kidney stones

There are those who think that the calcium present in the water is not absorbed by our body. False. The intestine's ability to absorb calcium contained in water (often present in substantial quantities) is similar to that of calcium contained in milk and dairy products.

Can calcium-rich water promote the formation of kidney stones? No. People predisposed to form this type of stones – reads the Guidelines – must drink abundantly and repeatedly throughout the day, without fear that the calcium contained in the water may favor the formation of the stones themselves. Indeed, it should be remembered that even mineral waters rich in calcium can constitute a protective factor in this regard.

Furthermore, it is not true that low sodium waters are useful for those with hypertension. The sodium contained in the water is in such a low quantity that its intake is irrelevant both in terms of health and aesthetics.

Is carbonated water bad for you?

Absolutely not. Neither naturally carbonated water nor water added with carbon dioxide – the document reads – creates health problems, on the contrary carbon dioxide improves the shelf life of the product. Only when the amount of gas is very high can there be mild symptoms in individuals who already suffer from gastric and / or intestinal disorders due to temporary pressure in the gastrointestinal system.

Water with meals yes or no?

Finally, it is not true that water should be drunk outside meals. On the contrary, an adequate amount of water (no more than 600-700ml) is useful because it improves the consistency and dilution of the food ingested with consequent better digestion and absorption.

Prof. Pier Luigi Rossi, medical specialist in nutrition sciences in Arezzo, who explained how the affirmation of not drinking water with meals is deprived of any scientific basis because the digestion of nutritional principles (proteins, lipids, carbohydrates) is carried out through enzymes called hydrolases , able to insert a water molecule into proteins, lipids and carbohydrates, carrying out this reaction: R '' – R '+ H2O> digestive enzyme> R' 'OH + R'H. Without an adequate volume of water in the intestine, this reaction is compromised, so there is no complete digestion of the food ingested. Water is not able to significantly dilute gastric acids. And if there is not an adequate volume of water in the intestine, because it has not been drunk before, during or after meals, the intestine must pass water from the blood.

The expert's advice, therefore, is to drink 2 glasses of water before a meal to promote digestion.

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