Role Of Water In Nutrition

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Water is one of the most precious gifts of nature.

It is an essential and major component of all living things on earth.

Water is one of the essential nutrients. In fact it is more essential to human life than food, for a person may live for weeks without food, but only for days without water.

About 60-70% of total body is made up for water. Thus the body of a 65 Kgs. Person contains approximately 40 litres. Of water. Of this about, 25 litres. Is within the cell and the remaining 15 litres. Is in the extra cellular fluid.


Water is essential to the composition of the body for the smooth functioning of the different processes.

It helps absorption of the food material through the intestinal track.

It keeps blood in the liquid state, thus enabling easy circulation even in the tiniest of the blood vessel.

Water maintains body temperature constantly at 98.4 Deg. F. in all the weathers and keeps the skin moist and cold.

It always keeps the mucus members moist and helps to secrete different fluids in various glands of the body.

Water helps the kidney to remove the unwanted body waste like urea and salt in the form of urine.

It also helps removal of body wastes through lungs as water vapour, through skin as perspiration and sweat and to a small extent through the large intestine as faeces.


The rate at which water is eliminated from the body, must be replaced by its intake, so as to maintain a balance in the system. Any great variation in the normal qty. of water in the body interferes with the vital processes and causes acute distress. Loss of water takes place, no matter whether we drink or not. So if we do not drink sufficient water, the blood thickness and the kidneys fail to deal with it efficiently, this may result in the accumulation of poisons.

For the maintenance of good health, an adult should take 8-10 glasses of pure fresh water daily, whether one feels thirsty or not.

Drinking water along with meals is not healthy, as it dilutes the gastric juices and hampers digestion. Drinking of a glass of water early in the morning is good for health. It prevents stomach disorder and constipation, also helps saliva formation along with some useful enzymes, which help in effective cleaning of the intestinal track.

Cold water or water at body temperature should be used for bathing. Application of cold water followed by friction facilitates the rush of blood to the skin. Bathing also helps to remove noxious substances from the surface of the skin which remains after the evaporation of perspiration.

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