Friday November 16, 2018

A timely reminder of water’s importance for mankind

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Dr J K Bhutani

Yesterday, March 22 was “World Water Day” and tomorrow, March 24 is Indian festival of colors and water, called Holi. In this article, a medical doctor and public health expert brings you an Indian darshan of jal (water). – NewsGram

In today’s world water crisis is one of the biggest crisis in front of human race. Since the time of ancient India, water was always given a lot of importance by our people and Shashtras. But today there is a need to be careful about the usage of water not only because of crisis but also to stay fit. Many people do not realize its importance for the body.

Hinduism puts Prithvi(पृथ्वी-Earth),Jal (जल-Water),Vayu(वायु-Air), Agni(अग्नि-Fire),Aakash(आकाश-Space)….as the basis of all cosmic creation and the human body too is considered to be made of these five elements.

The most abundant component of our body(nearly 55-65%) water, is in a dynamic state and naturally our daily requirement is variable too, according to the bodily state-of-health, environmental heat, physical activity/exercise, age, and diet!

A normal sedentary person may need about 2 liters (8X8 Eight eight-ounce glasses)per day but a laborer working in hot summer heat may need as much every hour!

For every hour of moderate-severe exercise, we need a liter of extra fluid at an optimal temperature.

As a rough guide of proper hydration color of urine should be a good indicator and once in a day it should look like the water at least and do believe your thirst cues.

Too much of water may be unnecessary load on the renal system and may also be the cause of hyponatremia in some over-enthusiasts.

The potable water is a big question. The public health water is generally safe if managed well and regulated. India started off well in early years of independence and public-health-distributions but some reservations are a constant threat now because of not-so-deep (500 ft) faulty source, improper storage,filtration,chlorination or leaking supply lines before it reaches the taps at home.

The CLEAN-WATER systems installed at homes are possibly ‘NOT-ONE-FOR-ALL-SOLUTIONS’ and are more of a confusion than a trusted help.

  1. Activated-Carbon-Filters can remove organic contaminants that affect taste and odor and may also remove some pesticides or heavy metals like lead.
  2. Ion-Exchange-units with activated alumina can remove minerals such as calcium and magnesium, which make water hard.
  3. Reverse-Osmosis units with carbon can remove nitrates and sodium as well as pesticides and petrochemicals.
  4. Distillation units boil water and condense the steam, creating distilled water…which lacks in minerals.
  5. Ultra-Violet light irradiation of any above method makes any water germs-free to a large extent..just like sunlight.
  6.  Bottled water is growing in business but the apparent safety issues are not guaranteed as it may be for a trusted public-health-tap-water.

Water is becoming scarce especially the potable one and the Wastage is rampant, as is our nonchalance.

On World Water Day 2016 let us resolve to conserve this precious resource for ourselves, our next generations and the mankind.

A few steps by us all, can be a giant leap for the mankind.

Check Leaking Taps, use smaller cisterns for flushing, close taps while brushing-shaving, use buckets for washing vehicles instead of hose-pipes, prefer a bucket-bath to a tub or shower-bath, wash dishes, vegetables and fruits in containers, use recycled waste water for plants, invest in water-harvesting and above all be sensitive to its saving and propagate to one and all!

Dr J.K. Bhutani MD is a protagonist of preventive and promotive health care based on austere biology and facilitating self healing powers of human organism.
You can follow him at https://twitter.com/drjkbhutani

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Copyright 2016 NewsGram

  • Shriya Katoch

    The unsupervised spending of water will lead to major problems in the future. It is time we recognise that water is a resource and is perishable.

    • Dr.J.K.Bhutani

      True, this is the time when the government, NGOs and media should sensitize the younger generations about the sacredness of the water as a need and as a ‘resource-to-be-preserved and revered’.

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  • Shriya Katoch

    The unsupervised spending of water will lead to major problems in the future. It is time we recognise that water is a resource and is perishable.

    • Dr.J.K.Bhutani

      True, this is the time when the government, NGOs and media should sensitize the younger generations about the sacredness of the water as a need and as a ‘resource-to-be-preserved and revered’.

Next Story

Lack of Proper Sanitation Affects 620 Million Children Around The World: Report

Despite the improvements, more than a third of the girls in South Asia miss school for one to three days a month during their period.

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toilets, studentsac
A new toilet recently installed in a Rohingya refugee camp in Bangladesh. VOA

A lack of proper school toilets threatens the health, education and safety of at least 620 million children around the world, the charity WaterAid said in a new study published Friday.

Children at 1 in 3 schools lack access to proper toilets, putting them at risk of diarrhea and other infections and forcing some to miss lessons altogether, according to the study, based on data from 101 countries.

Guinea-Bissau in West Africa has the worst school toilets while Ethiopian children fare worst at home, with 93 percent of homes lacking a decent toilet according to the report, released ahead of World Toilet Day on Monday.

toilets, students
Students arrive for class at the Every Nation Academy private school in the city of Makeni in Sierra Leone, April 20, 2012. VOA

“The message here is that water and sanitation affect everything,” WaterAid spokeswoman Anna France-Williams told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. “If there’s no toilet in schools, children will miss lessons and it will have an impact on their growing up.”

Diarrhea, infection risk

A lack of proper sanitation puts millions of children around the world in danger of diarrhea, which kills 289,000 children younger than 5 a year, WaterAid said.

But some regions have started to clean up their act, notably South Asia, where access to toilets in schools has improved.

More than half the schools in Bangladesh now have access to decent toilets, while students in 73 percent of schools in India and 76 percent of those in Bhutan can access basic sanitation.

Akramul Islam, director of water, sanitation and hygiene at the Bangladeshi charity BRAC, said the country’s once-high levels of open defecation — using open ground rather than toilets — were now less than 1 percent.

toilets, studentsac
India’s plight in sanitation has not improved much since ages.
Pixabay

“Today, schools have separate toilets for girls and boys and the issue of menstrual hygiene is also being addressed,” he said. “This has happened because of initiatives taken by both the government, the NGOs and other stakeholders.”

Also Read: 3 HIV+ Students Banned From School in Indonesia

Improvement needed

Despite the improvements, more than a third of the girls in South Asia miss school for one to three days a month during their period, WaterAid said, urging greater investment in basic sanitation.

“If we are serious about all children and young people, wherever they are, whatever their gender, physical ability or community background, having their right to clean water and sanitation, we must take decisive and inclusive action now,” said Chief Executive Tim Wainwright. (VOA)