The Watercure Recipe

I first learned about the watercure recipe in March, 1997. It was the mid-day break during a seminar I was presenting called: Building Bridges to Better Health. A young man handed me a book with the title: Your Body’s Many Cries for Water by F. Batmanghelidj MD and said: “Here, it’s a gift. I think you will find this book very interesting.” And the rest as they say is history.

I read the book on my flight home from Tulsa, Oklahoma (where I was presenting the seminar) and first thing Monday morning I called the book publisher to see if I could arrange a conversation with Dr. B (short for Batmanghelidj). Within a few minutes, I was speaking to Dr. B and a few hours after that, I started the watercure. 14 days later my body was finally properly hydrated (or getting there) for perhaps the first time in my life. 14 days after I started the watercure, the bout of depression and anxiety that had been with me for about six weeks, lifted. I had been suffering from periodic, episodic bouts of anxiety and depression that would come on suddenly and sometimes last days, weeks or months; for over 25 years. 14 days into the watercure and my symptoms of anxiety and depression were gone.

I am writing these words in January, 2022 and since that day in March,1997 I have not had another moment of anxiety or depression. The circumstances of my life have not changed dramatically since that time. The nature of my work, family life and normal stresses and strains remain, just like everyone else. What has changed is that since March 1997, I’ve been properly hydrated each day via the watercure and this simple habit has made all the difference in my health and well-being.

I have experienced many other health benefits as a result of this habit of proper daily hydration via the watercure and you will too. Keep in mind that everything that happens inside the human body and I mean the physiological functioning of every organ and system and cell and all the miraculous microscopic mechanics inside all of our cells; everything… is happening inside a salt water liquid or salt water solution called cytosol. If there is draught at any level, if there is chronic under-hydration at any level, your body will manifest negative symptoms. Symptoms like fatigue, headaches, joint pain, back pain, lack of focus, lack of concentration, memory problems, skin problems, digestion problems, elimination problems, blood pressure, blood sugar, hormone problems. You get the idea. The first place to look to make improvements for anyone and everyone under any circumstances is in the area of proper daily hydration.

I am so thankful to Dr. B. His kindness, generosity and acute insights into the physiology of hydration at the cellular level have dramatically improved the quality of my life and health. Please read his books!

If you have any questions about how to integrate the steps of the watercure into your current diet and lifestyle, please just call me or email me. My contact information will be at the end of this document. 2

How To Do The Watercure

1. The water we drink must be free of all impurities. If you do not have an effective point-of-use water purifier, for your drinking and cooking water, let me know and I will send you information about the unit I have been using and recommending for over 30 years. It converts your tap water into purified water that is 99.99% free of all impurities for about ten cents a gallon. Do not drink tap water. Do not use an inferior quality faucet filter as they often make your water quality worse not better. If you must, go to your local health food store and buy the bottled water they recommend; but the use of any bottled water should be temporary.

2. The water you drink must be warm. Not hot, not cold, warm. The best temperature varies from person to person based on body type, metabolism and current state of health. Room temperature may be too cool because water, standing alone, will always want to return to its original temperature. For most people starting out and for all people with serious health challenges, body temperature water is best. Our normal internal body temperature is 98.6 degrees. Your body works very hard to maintain this internal temperature. When you are sick, it takes extra energy and extra nutrients to maintain homeostasis, including the maintaining of your internal body temperature. Body temperature water is best for most situations.

3. The water you drink must contain salt. Sea salt is best. Celtic sea salt is the best sea salt in my opinion. I have been using the Celtic sea salt since the 1970’s. One quarter teaspoon of salt per one quart of drinking water. One quart is 32 ounces. The Celtic sea salt from Selina’s Naturally is now available in many retail stores including most Whole Foods Market stores. You can also phone them at 1-800-867-7258. I use and recommend the Light Grey Salt. There is some difference of opinion on the internet about whether to add the salt to the water or not. I was taught directly by Dr. B himself to add the salt to the water. I have been doing it this way and teaching it this way for 25 years. Each person needs to decide what works best for them. I prefer adding the salt to my water. The reason for adding the salt to your water is to aid the process of absorption and assimilation of the water molecules into your blood and into your cells. The presence of the salt also has an alkalinizing effect which is conducive to the natural healing process. If you cannot handle the taste of one quarter of a teaspoon of salt per quart of water, don’t worry. Just start with a smaller amount, even if that smaller amount is one grain of salt per quart of water. Then just build up gradually over days and weeks until you reach compliant levels. And for a variety of reasons, your body may prefer less than one quarter teaspoon of salt per quart of water. Experiment and discover what works best for you. Most people have some difficulty when first drinking intentionally salted water. These same people also report that they prefer the salted water once they get used to it and once they experience the profound benefits of proper daily hydration. Build up gradually to compliant levels of both the volume of water to drink each day and the amount of salt per quart of water for best results. 3

4. We must consume half our body weight in ounces of water per day, each and every day to recover from the symptoms of long term, chronic, unintentional dehydration and to prevent it from happening again. Read that rather long sentence again and then several times after that, for it represents the most important part of the watercure recipe. If you weigh 200lbs you need to drink 100oz of water per day. It’s just this simple. You must consume the right quality water and you must consume the right amount or quantity of water. I have never been one for “set prescriptions” especially when it comes to our food and beverage intake. Set prescriptions are usually reserved for drugs, not for habits in the world of natural healing. However, there are always exceptions to the rules and this is absolutely one of those exceptional rules. We must consume half our body weight in ounces of water per day. If you exercise and sweat profusely you will need to drink more water. If it’s summer time you will need to drink more water. If it is hot and humid you will need to drink more water. For every hour of vigorous activity and sweating you may need as much as 24oz of additional water or more. If you drink alcohol or coffee or tea (caffeine) or take any diuretics, you may need to drink more water. 90 – 95% of your total daily intake of water should be consumed between 6am and 6pm as much as possible. Or from when you wake up until just before your last meal of the day. Be careful not to drink too much water during meals as it may dilute your digestive juices. A small amount of sipped water during a meal is fine. Be flexible. Find the balancing point for your own body and your own activity level.

5. Drink your warm salted water throughout the entire day. Break the day into four parts. Part One is the time from waking up until you eat breakfast. You need to drink at least 12 oz and possibly up to 32 oz each morning before breakfast based on body weight, activity level and the total volume of water you need to consume each day. Part Two is the time between after breakfast and before lunch. Do the math and make sure you are close to 50-60% of the way to your water volume quota by lunchtime each day. Part Three is the time between after lunch and before dinner. This is typically the longest stretch of time you will have to be consuming water. 90 – 95% of your total daily intake of water should be consumed between 6am and 6pm as much as possible. Or from when you wake up until just before your last meal of the day. Part Four is the time between after the last meal of the day and bedtime. Drink only small amounts of water after the last meal of the day. Be careful not to drink too much water during meals as it may dilute your digestive juices. A small amount of sipped water during a meal is fine.

6. The amount of urine you eliminate should be equal to the amount of water you drink each day (plus or minus a few ounces). It may take several days but not usually more than several weeks to see this balance happening with your body. You’ve never measured your outflow of urine? Neither had I. Join the club. Hey, we get to do all kinds of fun, strange and curious things in the name of natural healing. The color of the first morning urine can be moderately yellow, but the rest of the urine should be very light yellow to almost clear like the color of lite beer. 4 Dark yellow to orange colored urine is a sure-sign of dehydration and possible kidney stagnation which is not good. If the color of your urine is currently orange or very dark yellow and it does not become significantly lighter within several days of doing the watercure, you should check with your medical doctor right away.

7. Sip your water. Sipping is the key to the success of the watercure recipe. Don’t drink 6-8oz at a time. Sip and swallow 1-2 oz at a time. A mouthful of water typically measures 1-2 ounces. Go slowly. Sip water throughout the day. Be gentle. Do not drink too fast or drink too much at any one time. Space it out evenly throughout the day. If you have a history of urinary incontinence, other bladder problems, frequent bladder and urinary tract infections, or you are concerned about the increased amount of water you will be drinking, relax. This isn’t something I am telling you about because it sounded like a good idea. This is a powerful solution to all kinds of health problems. I have witnessed this in my own life and in the lives of my clients during the last 25 years. As your kidneys and bladder become properly re-hydrated their normal functions will get better not worse and any associated problems in these areas will get better, not worse. Just follow these directions precisely. Be patient. Go slow but go steady. Sipping is the key!

Please do not underestimate the importance of being consistent with the correct amount of water you need to drink each day. Water and salt in combination promote and restore proper hydration levels within the cells and systems of the body. Proper daily hydration is the most significant biomodulating and homeostatic influence inside the human body. When the body is properly and consistently hydrated, everything else functions better. If you exercise and sweat, consume any diuretic beverages (alcohol, coffee, tea, soda, caffeine), then you will need to consume more water to make up. Your body loses 32 ounces of water each day just from breathing and sleeping and sitting around! If you exert yourself vigorously and sweat profusely, you will need to be very careful to restore proper hydration levels and then maintain proper hydration levels. Half your body weight in ounces of water is therefore, the absolute minimum of water you need each day. But don’t over-hydrate yourself either. Find the balance. Find the right amount of water for you given your unique circumstances and conditions and all will be well.

Let’s summarize the steps of the watercure recipe
1. The water we drink must be free of all impurities.
2. Body temperature water is best for most circumstances and conditions.
3. Add best quality sea salt to the water.
4. We must consume half our body weight in ounces of water per day.
5. Drink warm salted water throughout the day. Break the day into four parts.
6. The outflow of urine should be equal in volume to the inflow of water.
7. Sipping our water one to two ounces at a time is the key to successful hydration.

If you have any questions about how to implement the watercure recipe into your current diet and lifestyle, or if you have any other questions about the connections between proper daily hydration and health, please email me at: and visit our website:

Updated and Revised for 2022 (this document is updated annually)

More information on the next two pages…

Why Is Proper Daily Hydration So Important?

You need to understand that your body is likely suffering from a condition of chronic unintentional dehydration. Remember, I said unintentional. This is not necessarily the primary cause of your uncomfortable digestive system problems and symptoms (or other health concerns), but it is a major contributing factor. When this dehydration problem is corrected, your symptoms could disappear altogether.

Proper daily hydration is not casual; it’s causal.
Proper daily hydration is transformational.

You have just read about the seven steps that make up the watercure recipe. You must follow this recipe as described above as soon as possible. This means that depending on your unique circumstances and conditions, it might take you three days to make this transition and it might take you three weeks. What matters most is that you get to 100% compliance as soon as you possibly can. Don’t rush, but don’t procrastinate either.

For the very best results possible, please order some Celtic sea salt right away. For the best prices and how to order, see the information below. Use whatever sea salt you have on hand, or get some at your local health food store, until you get the Celtic sea salt. Some natural food stores are now carrying the Celtic Salt; like Whole Foods Market. Or order online at

The Celtic sea salt contains many other minerals and trace minerals (over 40) and this allows for better absorption into the cells, better communication between cells, and the incalculable therapeutic effects of alkalinizing our blood and lymph. I keep using this term, alkalinizing, but what I really mean is stabilizing our body fluids at their proper pH levels. For example, the pH of human blood must remain constant at 7.35 to 7.45 for optimum health. The pH of ocean water is nearly identical to the pH of human blood. Imagine that.

The primary reason commercial table salt is so bad for us is that it is almost pure sodium chloride. It has been stripped of all other minerals. This kind of salt is not natural at all. It is highly processed and refined. It is even bleached to be white. No wonder it is toxic to the body! Naturally harvested salt from the ocean is gray and moist, not white and dry. So, when you hear about medical doctors and other health care providers warning you about salt, they are right but they are NOT REFERRING to organic quality, mineral-rich sea salt, they are referring to processed table salt.

When you use the Celtic sea salt in the correct amounts according to the watercure recipe you will not increase the problems normally associated with the excess use of commercial quality processed salt, you will decrease their likelihood of occurrence. This is because of the dramatic qualitative differences between organic quality sea salt and commercial quality highly processed and refined table salt. Use the sea salt. Don’t use the commercial table salt. If you are not sure what you should do and have not been convinced by now of the therapeutic value of sea salt, please do not proceed. Consult with your most trusted health care provider and discuss with them.

I talk to people all the time who claim to drink tons of water daily. These same people will report astonishing results as soon as they start adding the organic sea salt per the instructions of the watercure recipe. The combination of water and salt is a powerful natural remedy for all kinds of problems with many therapeutic benefits.

The warm salted water we drink is absorbed into our body through the stomach. Follow these suggestions (sipping constantly throughout the day) and your stomach will not feel bloated or full. Your bladder will get stronger not weaker. Your bladder capacity will increase and if you suffer from the symptoms of frequent urination and/or urinary incontinence, they might subside and eventually disappear altogether.

As long as you sip your water you can drink water right up until actually consuming a meal and start up again 5-10 minutes after a meal. A small amount of sipped water during a meal is fine and will not cause any problems.

As I have said many times already (and throughout my book) when you are feeling healthy and whole and strong again, you will need to take all of my “suggestions” with a grain of salt and mostly rely on your own experimenting to ultimately find out what works best for you. But this advice is for down the road, well into Phase Two or even into Phase Three of your program. In Phase One, it is best to follow my suggestions as described here and in other documents and in my book.

Think of proper daily hydration as the foundation of your physical health habits.

Everything else you learn and do about Intestinal Regeneration and Cellular Regeneration; Functional Nutrition and Functional Medicine will be built upon this one simple habit. Everything else you do will work better if you practice this habit of proper daily hydration correctly and consistently. And everything else you do will 7 work less effectively if you do not practice this daily hydration habit correctly and consistently. A word to the wise is sufficient.

Still have concerns about the health benefits of salt?

Read the article by Dr. David Brownstein, MD:

If you have any questions about how to implement the watercure recipe into your current diet and lifestyle, you can email me at and visit my website:

Updated and Revised for 2022 (this document is updated annually

Author's Bio: 

Russell Mariani is the Director of Health Education at The Center for Functional Nutrition in South Hadley, Massachusetts. He is a Health Educator, Nutrition Counselor and Digestive Wellness expert. He has been in private practice since 1980. He has his Bachelor’s degree from Rutgers University (1977), a Masters of Arts degree in Health Education from Vermont College at Norwich University (2003), and continues acquiring ongoing education credits in the area of Digestive Wellness and Integrative Health through the Institute for Functional Medicine and the Institute for Functional Nutrition. Since 1980 he has helped thousands of people regain their health through dietary and lifestyle improvements through classes, seminars, retreats and personal consultations.