Today, thanks to the great advances of civilization, it is enough to turn a key and watch the crystalline liquid come out of it that keeps all beings alive: water. However, as natural and everyday as it may seem, there are some facts about it that you certainly don´t know and that will leave you in awe. Here are some facts and curiosities about water:
Amount of water in living things
As astonishing as it may seem to you, according to the data provided by scientists, Planet Earth has the same amount of water it had two billion years ago: five hundred and twenty-five million cubic kilometers ago, without it having increased or decreased a single drop over the centuries.
In this sense, it could be said that at least seventy percent of planet Earth is covered in water. However, of that one hundred percent only three percent is fresh water, and yet at least two percent is frozen, leaving us living beings only one percent of the planet’s water fit for consumption and survival, which is why it becomes a vital fact to care for it and not contaminate it.
And just as the planet contains water, so do living things. For example, in the case of humans it could be said that sixty-six percent of an adult’s weight is made up of water, which would amount to a total of about thirty-seven litres.
Looking at it in detail, human bones contain a total of twenty-five percent water, while human blood contains eighty-three percent, and the human brain seventy-five percent, which is why it need to consume at least two litres of water a day.
However, it isn´t just a question of ingesting glasses with water, since our body extracts most of the water it needs from the food we consume, which are also – as we are – made up of water, for example, an apple contains at least eighty-five percent water, while a tomato is made up of ninety-five percent water, followed by potatoes with eighty percent and spinach with ninety-one percent.
Physical qualities of water
As for its qualities, water is also a physically astonishing substance, as it is the only one on planet Earth that can be found in both liquid, solid and gaseous state. It is also the element that dissolves the most substances on the planet. Within its functions is to be the main regulator of Earth’s temperature.
It is also an oxygen source, because – although we have been taught that forests are the lungs of the earth – the oceans are actually the largest supplier of oxygen on the planet, so their pollution not only threatens to leave us without an essential part of the food , but also without air to survive.
Another curious fact about water is that – and although it seems strange – when it is frozen it weighs less than when it is in a liquid state, being the difference of nine percent less, in favor of the ice, which is why it floats on liquid water.
Finally, and to the disappointment of those who have been painting water droplets for years, scientists have proven thanks to the use of advanced high-speed cameras that water droplets aren´t in the form of tears, but rather as a crushed sphere.
Importance and statistics on drinking water
We always hear that water is the vital liquid, but we rarely become aware of its real importance. According to scientific studies, an average human can survive up to a month without trying a bite of food. However, it doesn´t exceed one week without drinking water, as it is essential for the proper functioning of the body.
However, not all humans have access to safe drinking water so easily. It has been estimated that at least one billion people worldwide live in areas that don´t have accessible water sources, so hundreds of millions of humans must walk up to more than ten kilometers to get water suitable for consumption.
This figure becomes more alarming when we realize that every day at least four thousand and five hundred children die from lack of water, which, together with adults who perish due to lack of water, gives a total of three million deaths caused by lack of water Water.
Risks and hazards associated with water consumption
However, just as we run the risk of dehydration, it is also a risk for the body to drink excess water and quickly, as an over-the-ground level of water in the body can dilute sodium levels in the blood, resulting in problems at the water level in the brain, which can even lead to death.
So, too, and although it may seem paradoxical, not all humans react well to water, as some may have aquagenic hives, that is, a skin allergic reaction to water, caused by the presence on the skin of the individual of an antigen than in contact with water dissolves passing through the dermis and epidermis, causing the immune system to react defending. However, it is an extremely bizarre condition of which only thirty cases have been documented.
And just as drinking excess water is harmful, so does drinking certain types of water. Our body is prepared to consume only fresh water, so drinking for example salt or sea water produces in the body a rapid dehydration, due to the amount of salt, so it is always recommended to people in survival situation stopping consuming salt water sources no matter how thirsty you are.
Image source: abengoa.es
August 31, 2019