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S.T.E.M. Matters: Why Water?
S.T.E.M. Matters Manager: Marisa Ostos
It’s common knowledge that we as humans need water to live, but why is this? What makes water so vital to our own survival?
If we start at the molecular level, we’ll find that each cell within our body contains organelles, enzymes, genetic material (DNA), and such which help us to survive. Regardless of all this, each cells contains mostly empty space, with this empty space being taken up by a liquid called the cytosol, which again is largely water. The liquid cytosol, along with the organelles, enzymes, and such all work together to help each individual cell function and survive. Without this organization, and without each part of the cell serving its proper function, the cell would not survive. As our bodies are made up of cells, the proper functioning of each cell is important to our own health.
On a larger level, water is known as the “universal solvent,” necessary to all organisms’ surival. As you know, water is made up of H2O: 2 molecules of hydrogen and 1 molecule of oxygen. Our own bodies undergo a number of chemical processes that utilize water or the elements within water, one example being the “citric acid cycle” which helps to create energy for our bodies. Looking at an even larger scale, water does a number of things for our bodies including, but not limited to the following: thinning the blood which helps decrease our risk of heart attack; lowering blood presure; helping us to feel less hungry; flushing out toxins; regulating our body temperature; and more [BestRealHealth].
All in all, water is such an important chemical that we (and pretty much all organisms) quite literally would not survive without it. This is why, in searching for life on other planets, astronomers and such search for signs of water. For life as we know it, water is necessary to survival, so drink up!