If you are one of those who believe in kickstarting your day by guzzling down at least a glass of drinking water and hoping it would bring in a lots of health benefits – you are right and this article is for you. Many of us hate using plastic bottles and let’s agree glass bottles are a high maintenance. But what if we told you to grab a copper bottle, store water in it overnight and drink it on empty stomach for numerous health and therapeutic benefits? Welcome to the world of copper bottles, the latest health rage and insights into why you should invest in copper bottles and the role of this important metal/trace mineral in our daily wellbeing.
Using copper utensils for cooking, storing food and water is nothing new for us in India. Produced in massive stars and then extracted from the mines, copper is in fact one of the very few natural metals that is available in readily usable form exuding high thermal and electrical conductivity. This bright red to pale pinkish-orange colour metal known as a high conductor of heat and electricity is used extensively in construction materials, jewellery, decorative art and even as crockery. Though this metal wears a tarnished look when exposed to air, it doesn’t interfere with its electronic transitions.
Also Read: Copper: Functions, Food Sources, Deficiency And Toxicity
Historians believe that the copper has been in use for over 11,000 years and it is often referred as copper age or chalcolithic era. It dates back to 9000 BC in the Middle Eastern region and was perhaps one of the first few metals used by the humans. Historical evidence suggests that Greeks, Romans used copper in their daily lives and currency minted from this metal was widely in circulation. In India, copper is the first choice in religious rituals for storing holy water and other purposes like cooking.
Known as Tamiram in Tamil, Raagi in Telugu, Taamba in Hindi, Tamra in Kannada there is no exaggeration in saying that all Indian households would possess at least one copper vessel or a glass. Thanks to growing awareness on traditional methods of cooking and eating, copper bottomed utensils too made a comeback into our kitchens in the recent years. Interestingly, our bodies too possess a little amount of copper in the form of a trace mineral at around 1.4 to 2.1mg and the deficiency of copper can lead to various chronic conditions.
The Role Of Copper In Cleansing Water:
Our ancient medicine Ayurveda strongly recommends drinking water stored in copper vessels daily for boosting immune system and for balancing all the three doshas – vata, kapha and pitta. Ayurvedic practitioners refer water stored in copper vessels as ‘Tamra Jal’ and this copperized liquid serves as a natural oxidant.
In addition, copper comes with significant amounts of antimicrobial properties making it ideal for eliminating disease causing bacteria, fungi and viruses. When water gets stored for up to 8 hours in a copper bottle or a vessel, it undergoes oligodynamic effect, which means it gains the ability to kill several infection causing microbes, fungi besides maintaining the natural PH levels.
Based on studies that certain 355 copper alloys can kill 99.9% disease causing bacteria within just 2 hours of regular cleaning, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the usage of copper coated door knobs, bedrails, handrails, sinks, faucets, toilet hardware, etc in hospitals to arrest and reduce the transfer of contagious diseases like cold, cough, influenza and contamination.
Besides killing highly resistant bacteria, fungus and virus copper water is a treasure trove of medicinal properties that can play a pivotal role in maintaining the overall health.
Also Read: How Salts in Drinking Water Can Affect Health
Health Benefits Of Drinking Copper Water:
Cancer has unfortunately become a common occurrence and this dangerous condition has been constantly challenging the medical fraternity for many years. Water stored in copper bottle or copper vessel is an excellent source of antioxidants, that can combat free radicals responsible for tumours and stimulating cancer cells. If you are often exposed to sun rays, make it a point to carry a copper bottle along, as the water stored in it produces melanin – a natural skin pigment that shields skin from harmful ultraviolet rays.
Stimulates Thyroid Function:
Thyroid is a tiny, butterfly shaped gland responsible for the production of various hormonal functions. Thyroid related problems have become quite common these days affecting both male and female alike in all age groups. Hormonal imbalances can play a havoc in your life and the water imbued with the goodness of copper can correct thyroid dysfunction. However, if you are suffering from hyper or hypo thyroid, exercise caution while drinking this water as too much copper in the system can cause other troubles.
Boosts Haemoglobin Count:
Haemoglobin, the protein molecule present in the red blood cells is extremely crucial for body functioning. Lack of haemoglobin can cause anaemia leading severe fatigue, brittle bones, disorientation besides other chronic conditions. Studies reveal that copper water aids in breaking down of food for the production of haemoglobin and helps in the better absorption of iron into the body. Copper being an important trace mineral is required by the body in right amounts to prevent certain haematological conditions.
Copper, being a vital trace element plays extensive role in maintaining blood pressure and regulates the amount of bad cholesterol or LDL and triglycerides in the blood. However, if a person is diagnosed with deficiency of copper since childhood, chances are high it might lead to hypotension or low blood pressure. Similarly, a sudden copper deficiency in the adulthood can lead to hypertension of high BP.
Copper though a metal, exudes the properties of a natural antibiotic. When this metal comes in touch with the harmful microbes on the surfaces or in water, destroys it immediately. Doctors recommend drinking water that has been stored in copper bottle for at least 8 hours for the completer filtration and elimination of various bacteria including E.coli, Cholera bacillus, etc.
Soothes Joints and Strengthens Bones:
Osteoporosis is a chronic condition that can cause intense pain in joints and bones. Regular intake of water stored in copper bottle or vessel will have positive effect on this condition and helps in reducing the pain. In India, it is still a practice to place a copper coin or small vessel on inflamed joints to bring down the swelling and pain.
Maintains Heart Health:
Cardiologists believe that lack of copper in the system can often cause plaque deposits blocking the blood vessels. Copper deficiency can weaken heart muscles, reduce ejection fraction (the pumping capacity of the heart) and also the ability of reacting to the stress. Heart patients are strongly advised to drink copper water for attaining the optimum copper levels in the body.
Helps Lose Weight:
Copper is an amazing mineral that can melt away the excess fat deposits in the body. The right amount of copper in the body boosts metabolism, burns fat helping you lose weight in a healthy weight. However, do not consume copper water in excess as it can lead it to copper poisoning.
Also Read: 5 Foods Incredibly Rich In Copper That Enhances Overall Wellbeing - Infographic
Improves Brain Function:
Brain is a vital organ and its functioning depends on various factors including healthy habits and stress-free life. Brain communicates with rest of the organs through electrical impulses and studies have revealed that a glass of ‘tamra jal’ in the body stimulates its functioning, balances hormones and instils positive thoughts.
Copper be it in the form of a metal or a mineral is antibacterial, antimicrobial in nature. Washing the wound or an injury with copper water not only cleanses the effected area but also aids in regeneration of the skin and heals the wounds faster.
Copper these days has become an integral part of beauty products. Used by ancient Egyptians several years back, copper based cosmetic products have made a comeback in the recent years owing to their natural antioxidant properties that can assist in generating the skin cells by prevents the signs of ageing.
Copper Uses In Health
Copper is a vital trace mineral needed by the body in a minimal amount for optimal health and well-being. Copper aids in producing heat in the body, communicating between different cells, breaking down foods to haemoglobin and triggers several metabolic processes. A deficiency of copper leads to health problems like parasitic infections, leaky gut and anaemia. Adding copper-rich food sources like lentils, seeds, mushrooms, and dried apricots may be beneficial in correcting the deficiency and enhancing overall health.
Copper Uses In Environment
Copper is one of the environmentally friendly metals, which is a good conductor of heat and electricity. It is readily available, cheap, easy to recycle, thus making it the greenest natural element. It is also used for making solar panels. In recent years, copper is largely used for bioleaching, a process where mineral ores are extracted from their sulphide ores with the assistance of other elements in nature. Furthermore, it also plays a key role in handling hazardous nuclear waste.
Possible Benefits Of Copper Supplements
Copper supplements are helpful in promoting health and treating several conditions, which includes:
Copper supplements improve bone density in postmenopausal women.
Copper supplements may enhance cardiac health, function, and lower the risk of CVD.
How To Select A Copper Bottle?
There is no dearth of copper-based crockery products, utensils in the market but ensure to pick the right one for acquiring desired results. It is heartening to find copper utensils, glasses, plates, bottles finding a space even on the restaurant tables and also in star hotels. Besides maintaining the temperature for a long time, food or water stored in copper vessels is an easy and affordable way of beating infection causing microbes that can hamper our health.
Pick a bottle made from pure copper. Go for those that come with certification.
Fill the bottle with clean drinking water and it at room temperature overnight. Do not refrigerate.
Drink the water on empty stomach, after brushing teeth. Make sure to maintain at least 10 minutes gap between brushing and drinking water
Always consume plain water. Do not mix with honey or lemon in it as it causes instant acidic reaction and may lead to nausea and vomiting.
It is always advisable to take a month gap after drinking copper water for two months continuously. This will help the system to flush out excess copper, if any from the body.
Also Read: Grandma’s Wisdom: Use Copper Vessels to beat Bacteria
Is It Safe To Drink Out Of Copper Bottle?
Well, drinking water from a copper bottle is usually a safe bet provided you follow certain rules. Many may be afraid of copper toxicity as it can be extremely harmful to the body. However, copper toxicity is often a result of using corroded copper bottle. A corrosion in copper bottle can happen due to storing foods that are acidic in nature and it also depends on the softness of the water.
Always ensure to stock water in room temperature for at least 8 hours to enjoy desired benefits.
How To Clean A Copper Bottle?
Copper gets oxidized when exposed to air leaving behind a tarnished colour. It can be easily removed by rubbing some lemon juice mixed with salt and rinsing it with plain water.
Another popular method is to rub in some tamarind mixed salt and wash it with plain water to get its natural colour back.
Drinking copper water or tamra jal daily on the empty stomach is a popular health trend that is fast picking up among the younger generation. If you have been drinking water that has been constantly stored in copper bottle or vessel, chances are high that you might be at the risk of copper toxicity. It can cause severe nausea, dizziness, abdominal pain and can result in liver and kidney failure. If excess amounts of copper gets infused into the water, it can have potential side effects on the health.
The World Health Organization recommends only 0.47 mg of copper for every litre of water and the upper intake should not exceed 10mg per day. In case, if you have stored for more than 10 hours, do not consume it as it could have crossed the daily recommended intake.
Copper bottles though a latest fad are nothing new in India. Storing water in copper utensils, vessels is an ancient practice in Indian households owing to its wide range of therapeutic and medicinal properties. Store clean drinking water in a copper bottle or glass for at least 8 hours and drink it on empty stomach to derive various health benefits including regulated thyroid function, maintenance of high blood pressure, combat cancer, soothe painful joints, bones, stimulate brain functioning and for defying the signs of ageing.
Copper be it as a metal or a trace mineral plays a pivotal role in our daily lives. Copper deficiency can lead to various chronic health disorders but excess amounts of this mineral could turn fatal as it can interfere with the functioning of vital organs. Copper bottles are easy-to-maintain and carry but ensure you daily intake doesn’t exceed the upper limit of 10mg per day, as recommended by WHO.