Since eating raw, I've found my relationship with all the elements to be changing. It started with sun first, as after a mere few weeks I could tolerate sun without seeking the shade, and my skin began to bronze up after a lifetime of sunburn prone, pale skin. I breathe deeper and I relish places where I can connect to the earth barefoot.
With water, I find the quality just as important as fruit quality. My favorites being a pure mountain spring, shower of rainwater straight from the sky, clear, pure stream water, and when I get the opportunity, thermal hot springs. I love to swim in natural water and do so much more frequently now. After years of enjoying long hot steamy bathing time, I now like cooler water for bathing (unheated in the tropics, or body temperature).
But, I mostly feel un- inclined to drink it. After much experimenting, I don't feel the benefit of consuming 3 liters a day and I feel quite hydrated on natural fruit water. I feel water can be of benefit when eating greens, nuts, dried fruit or mostly meals of very concentrated foods like avocado or banana. At the moment, I don't have an eating pattern that includes such, and so I do not include water.
I'm so curious what others do with water in their daily diet. I'm talking about the eating times. I have never had a long fast, but have had more success with short dry fasts than short water fasts. I've read very beautiful experiences of both kinds, and please feel free to share those on this thread too.
Please share what you do, your experience, opinions, scientific facts...
Thanks for asking these questions, they are very interesting. I do not have a well-shaped answer to these, but I do have a bunch of thoughts that are the result of my personal observations. I like to experiment and observe. When I changed my diet from cooked to raw, I observed how far more hydrated I became. Before raw, I used to carry a water bottle with me at all times, yet my body had visible signs of dehydration, apparent in my skin and gums for example. After going raw, I observed a remarkable change in my body, which seemed to me like an alien transformation, and a huge part of it I contribute to my increased hydration level. This is not the end of the story as yet. During my raw journey, I observed that dehydrator-made foods dehydrate me. Further, I observed that the most hydrating foods, which have the most dramatic hydration level on my body, are juicy, water-rich fruit. I progressed to including them in my daily diet, and without them I do not feel as hydrated and comfortable as with them. My relationship with greens has been an on and off affair. Recently, I decided to perform an experiment and include the greens in my daily diet, because I wanted to analyze the possible implications of doing so first-hand. Many raw foodists include greens in their daily diet, and the argument is that the greens provide lots of minerals, and there also exists some empirical evidence that those they do, have beautiful, radiant appearance. I do not have a fully-formed opinion on this as yet. Anyway, after just a day or two of my experiment, which was a rather dramatic change for me, from fruit only to fruit and lots of greens daily, I observed that my need for water increased dramatically. Because I continued to drink water at the levels I was used to before, I in fact became dehydrated initially. I had a day during which I sipped a lot of water. From then on, after the adjustment of my patterns, I felt better.
As far as fruit that is not water-rich, yes, I do find it less hydrating. Banana smoothie, which includes water, feels more hydrating than bananas, for example. But I prefer fruit mono, and so I am driven towards juicy fruit more than to bananas. I do believe that a diet of water-rich fruit is incredibly hydrating, and I can understand why the need for added water, evident in the feeling of thirst, can be significantly reduced on such diet.
I think that the water present in fruit has got some remarkable properties, not all of them fully understood by science. Further, some research exists which highlights that the role of water goes far beyond of what was once understood:
"It has been discovered that the protein literally trap water molecules inside them in order to maintain certain shapes, which in turn allows the protein to perform various key functions, "from fighting off invaders to catalysing reactions and building fresh cells" (Robert Matthews, The quantum elixir, New Scientist, 8 April 2006, pages 32-37). Furthermore, water molecules play a crucial role in the functioning of DNA. Specifically, they communicate the DNA structure to the protein and affect how the protein bind to DNA."
Now, I have some very rough estimates, which I find interesting. Babies are about 90% water. Most adults are about 50%. Raw foodists about 60%. A water-rich fruit diet seems to bring an average person to about 70%.
I hope Adam, Neuron and other rigorously-inclined might minds read this and offer their insights on this interesting topic.
Neo, thank you for sharing these most beautiful prayers.
I am still in my first year (kindergarten?) of 100% raw vegan diet - exactly how "low fat" I wouldn't exactly know, nor would I know how many calories per day I consume. I'm not as scientific as that.
My experiences of 40 years ago don't really count all that much in my estimation, in view of my advanced age (76 years).
I still have 3 months to go to complete this first year. A few months ago I did not drink any water at all for weeks on end. Then I found myself getting a bit thirsty at times, so I started drinking water again. I'd say I drink about half a cup per day on average. (My diet includes about 200g of raw English spinach leaves per day, also about 60g ordinary (not "fresh") dates per day, about 400g avocados per day, and about 10 Brazil nuts per day. About 5 bananas per day, and the rest: about 1 to 2 kilos of juicy fruits (minneolas, mandarins, apples, pears, strawberries, cantaloupe, tomatoes, loquats, nectarines, peaches, whatever is most readily available and in season). So, yes, I favour the water in fruit as water supply.
I don't spend much time pondering what I am going to eat or drink next: I simply follow my inclination of the moment. To what extent this inclination is influenced by the propaganda around me, and other "concepts", is hard to judge. I admit that I carry around a couple of concepts:
(1) That any form of cooking is dangerously unnatural.
(2) That dairy produce is of questionable "naturalness" and definitely worth avoiding for one full year for the sake of experimentation.
(3) That all unnatural foods and practices are questionable and potentially dangerous, and best avoided as far as possible.
(4) That bread is the staff of death (I rather like this one, it has a humorous element.) (A year ago I was still eating about 600g of rye bread per day, and had been eating this amount of bread for about 20 years)
What great responses! Thank you! I've really been curious because there are such different ideas of how much water we really need, and what elements of it hydrate us. I've even heard theories that we need to have the right mineral content in water (adding salt?) to allow us to absorb it properly. I tend towards natural fruit water and think it has the potential for the best hydration. From experimenting, it seems to me that citrus fruit is the most hydrating.
Gosia, that is very curious about the percentage of water in our bodies. I had heard Loren Lockman say something similar about most people being quite dehydrated. I believe that one person he found being very well hydrated was a young man who had been mostly fruitarian/raw eating for about 15 years. I don't know how one tests for this percentage level of water.
Neo, thank you for the quotes from Gospel of Peace! It is my FAVORITE raw text, and one of the first I read. I hadn't realized I was echoing it, ha ha:) I noticed the same thing when drinking the 30BAD recommendation. My bladder was full and uncomfortable. With fruit water I am much more comfortable, and still feel I am hydrated. My lips and mouth are never dry and my urine is clear. Yes, I think there is a proper amount that we each have to ingest of water and food, and it takes some figuring out. If it is very hot or I have the opportunity for some great spring water, I may drink some water.
Gurth, thanks for sharing your experience! I like that you are able to follow your instincts so well. I think it is important to do that and not be influenced so much by other people's ideas. I found myself doing that when I began eating raw, and I think it was a much more natural state to be in than trying to implement other people's concepts. I like your guidelines, though I would imagine some natural sprouted bread, such as is mentioned in the Essene gospel has good qualities to it.
^ Oh, I wasn't meaning to include Essene bread as "bread". Yes, that is definitely something else. A local guy, alas now deceased, was producing some a few years ago; it was definitely raw and very delicious.
I also possessed a copy of the Essene Gospel of Peace long ago - I don't know what happened to it - but it was certainly most inspiring.
BTW, where I said (in my last post on this thread) that I was eating about "1 to 2 kilos of juicy fruits", that was an underestimation I think. It's more like 2 to 3 kilos per day.
Here's one that took by surprise about my water relationship.
In the past, I used to say, "I hate being rained on!" Maybe it had something to do with living in a chilly constantly wet climate.
But now, I almost look forward to it. In fact, this year, I was eagerly awaiting a lightening-free monsoon (what we call the brief by torrential downpours in the desert) to go run in it. Never happened, as this was a very dry summer, but I'd call that a shift of consciousness.
Reminds me of that 'Instinct" film with Anthony Hopkins and Cuba Gooding, Jr, where Hopkins is observing Gorillas in the jungle during a rain fall. He's cowing under a large leaf, but the gorillas are simply living as normal, allowing the water to soak them. Under a dawning realization, Hopkins sheds his leaf, and begins to revel in the simple pleasure of the rain drops.
My relationship with water has grown. I used to be unaware of just about everything other than nintendo. I have a good water filter at my house and rarely drink tapwater. I like juicy fruits and satsumas are in season so I have been eating 3-6 pounds of them a day. I drink a quart of water every morning before eating and a few glasses during the day. I now love when I can go out naked during a summer rain and soak in the glory of fresh water. A Lebanese grocery store and deli I used to frequent has a painting in the bathroom that says: fresh water - the source of life. I would agree. I've been trying to understand the elements more and more. Whenever I can i ponder them and then ask my intuition to focus on them as well.
When I don't drink enough water my pee gets yellow so I drink water but it seems to make sense that juicy fruit will help hydrate. I'm new to raw foods and especially low fat high fruit diet and I feel great about it. I'm still figuring it all out.