Ayurvedic Rehydration Therapy

What is Ayurveda? Ayurveda is the sister science to yoga, India’s natural medicine. The main focus of Ayurveda is proper digestion to benefit overall health.

Essentially rehydration therapy is increasing your water intake, with a few key parameters that could benefit your overall health.

Two major techniques of rehydration therapy include:

  1. Hot Sips: Sip plain boiled hot water every 10-15 minutes throughout the day.
  2. Daily Ounces: Drink 8-10 (12 ounce) glasses of plain water.

Why hot sips? Imagine pouring cold water on a dried out piece of leather. That water would most likely roll right down the leather, rather than soaking in. If the pores of the leather stay closed, the water molecules have no opportunity to penetrate. A dried out digestive tract can experience the same effect. You may be drinking a lot of water, but if the intestinal wall doesn’t have a chance to soften and become receptive to the water, rehydration may not occur.

Now imagine soaking the leather in hot water. You can just imagine how the pores would open up, allowing the water to penetrate and soften the material. To create this softened, porous atmosphere, sip boiled hot water throughout the day. Boiling makes the water molecules very active, which is why boiled hot water is more cleansing than cold water.

Why plain water? Plain water has a rinsing effect that even lemon water cannot replicate. Adding anything to water also creates an extra step for your body to achieve hydration: First it must separate the plain water molecule from whatever else it may be bound to before it can drive that water deeply into the cell pores.

It is important to hydrate your stomach lining 15-20 minutes before meals with a glass of water. Sipping hot or room temperature water during the meal is fine. Drinking too much water near or close to mealtime can dilute the digestive fire.

Always drink room temperature water throughout the day or “Hot sips”, drinking cold water can shock the system and is bad for the digestion. It sounds like a lot of water to achieve this goal, so just do your best, and don’t strain. Building habits in ways that feel natural and easy will make it more likely that the habit will actual stick and become a new lifestyle practice.

Remember these key water guidelines:

  • Hot Sips
  • Daily Ounces (Pause during mealtime)
  • Room temperature water

Angela Weixel, MSW, LISW-S