This is really basic, but I want to get the word out that many people I see in my practice are having real health problems because they do not drink enough water. I even saw a prominent physician recently who, when I asked him how much water he drinks he replied - not enough. In Chinese medicine there is the all-important concept of yin and yang. Everything in the universe has a yin side and a yang side. And our bodies can be described in simple terms using this concept. So the heat that is generated by us being alive is yang, and the fluids in our body that act as a coolant are yin. The coolant and the heat balance each other, balance of yin and yang. When yin and yang are balanced in the body everything works well and we are well. When this balance is tipped is when things break down. Most people have plenty of the heat part but are lacking in the coolant part. A coolant that you can add to your built-in coolant is the water we drink. You can easily imagine what could happen if we have too much heat in our body and not enough coolant - we will overheat. And if something, say your car, is overheated, it is in danger of breaking down. Also, heating up things dries things out. A body that is dried out does not work as well. If your bowels dry out, you are in big trouble. If your lungs are dry you develop a chronic cough. Even your cells, which are mainly water, if less than optimally hydrated will not function as well. We are almost 60% water, so if you are low on water you are pretty dried out. I like to tell people, and I do this myself, to wake up to water (after all we have had 8 hours with very little or no water intake). One of the first things you do each morning should be to drink a glass of water. It's really the little things that we do every day that make the real differences in our health and really in our lives.
Monte Jackson, owner Acupuncture Center of Richmond