April 11, 2010

Functions of Water in Human Body

Functions of Water in Human Body
Water accounts for about 55 to 68 per cent to our total adult body weight. The percentage of water tends to decrease as we grow older.

Thus infants and children have a much higher amount of body water than adults. Fat persons have less water than lean ones.

Water is an essential nutrient next in importance to oxygen. Deprivation of water even for a few days can lead to death.

Water is a universal solvent and is responsible for the movement of food from mouth to stomach and is able to dissolve most of the products of digestion.

Further, it is a constituent of all body fluids. It helps to transport the products of digestion to the appropriate organs.

For example, blood which contains 90 percent water carries carbon dioxide to the lungs, nutrient to the cells, and waste nitrogenous material (urea, uric acid etc) and salts to the kidneys.

Urine, which contains 97 per cent of water has all the waste dissolved in it and the body is thus able to excrete soluble waste products of metabolism.

Water is needed for many chemical changes that occur in the body. For example the breakdown of sugar or fat, to simpler substance (hydrolysis) needs water as a medium and also as a reactant in the process.

Water acts as a lubricant and prevents friction between joints. When water from joints is lost, when one falls the joints become stiff.

The body temperature is regulated through the evaporation of water from the skin and lungs (sensible and insensible perspiration).
Functions of Water in Human Body

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