The human body is composed of 75% water and it has systems that regulate its distribution. Those systems of “drought management”, have established certain priorities according to the importance of the organs (for instance, the brain is treated with the highest priority). Histamine is in charge of the water regulation system so when we don’t drink enough water, it becomes overly active. If the dehydration becomes chronic, too much histamine is released and can cause allergies, asthma, and chronic pain in different parts of the body. But these conditions should not be treated with medication (i.e. antihistamines) because they are signals telling us that there is a shortage of water in your body.
If a state of chronic dehydration in the body leads to Asthma, the person will experience increased respiratory distress, coughing and excess mucous secretion. All that bronchial constriction is caused by increased levels of histamine in the lung tissue. The lungs need water to keep the air passages moist and to prevent them from drying up when air circulates in and out. Therefore, the release of histamine in the lungs is really a response from the body to preserve its levels of water in an organ that is a major site of water loss.
The minimum daily water intake should be 6 to 8, 8oz glasses per day (alcohol, coffee, tea and caffeine-containing beverages do not count as water) and the best times to drink them are half an hour before taking food and two and a half hours after each meal.
On average, a patient suffering from Asthma should see positive results after three to four weeks of regulating their body water levels. Importantly, the increase of water intake should be done gradually and sustained on a daily basis. Overdrinking or “binging” in water for a few days is not going to undo the damage of months or years of chronic dehydration.
Watching the levels of potassium intake is also recommended for Asthmatics because high amounts of it can promote the increase of histamine production. A good example of this is orange juice, which has a very high amount of potassium, therefore, a maximum of two glasses a day should be consumed.
In regards to the quality of drinking water, it is ideal if the patient uses filtered water. Chlorinated water, besides causing skin irritation and destroying the friendly microflora of the digestive track, forms free radicals and promotes oxidation (it can for instance deplete our vitamin E reserves). Even worse, chlorinated water contains chemical compounds called trihalomethanes, which are carcinogens that result from the mix of chlorine with organic matter. These chemicals can cause mutations by altering DNA and can also suppress the function of the immune system. In addition, chlorine has been proven to aggravate asthma in children, especially in those who get exposed to it by frequent use of swimming pools[ii].
Maintaining good hydration is extremely beneficial for your general health. Medication for chronic, long-term conditions can work against you and make you ignore your own body’s signals for help. Like Dr. Batmanghelidj points it out in the cover of his book: 'You’re not sick; you’re thirsty. Don’t treat thirst with medication'.