You Need Water To Survive

You Need Water To Survive

The human body consists of mostly water: in fact, the human body is actually about 60 percent water.  Every cell in your body, every organ, relies on water for not only survival but also to perform at its best.  Water is essential because it:

  • lubricates the joints
  • cushions the skull and the spinal column
  • regulates circulation
  • improves digestion

How much water you need at any given time, though, largely depends on things like?

  • sunlight exposure
  • temperature
  • your personal physiology
  • digestion and diet

Indeed, aside from oxygen (in the air we breathe), water is the most important factor for survival.

Actually, did you know that the human body can survive an entire month, on average, without food?  When Mahatma Gandhi led his famous hunger strike he was 74 years old; the strike lasted 21 days.  He had sips of water throughout, of course, but some speculate that it was his already slight build that might have contributed to survival.  Still, many studies suggest he probably would have only lasted another week or so, at most, depending on other variables that can affect metabolism.

Some studies show that the average adult can lose as much as 1.5 litres of sweat in extreme conditions. But if that lost volume of water is not quickly replaced, total volume of body fluid can plummet, which result in lower blood volume; and that is where the real problems come into play. Furthermore, any instance of dehydration which results in a loss of 10 percent water supply should be regarded a medical emergency that requires immediate intervention.

If you understand this, then, it should make a lot of sense as to why it is crucial to find water in any survival situation. While oxygen deprivation may be the most immediate threat in terms of basic survival, most people are not going to find themselves in a situation where oxygen availability is a concern. Indeed water is the most immediate need in terms of survival. If you have access to water you will be able to rest and recover from physical activity, which means you can hunt and forage and build shelter, as well as escape danger.   Perhaps most importantly, if you have water you can also continue to look for help; it will help you to survive longer as you wait for some help to arrive.

Categories: Outdoors

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