Whether you like to test your Survival Savior, survival skills or simply “rough it” on your vacation, there are few essentials you take with you when you venture out into the wilderness. Most importantly, you need to make sure that you have access to potable water. The human body, after all, is made up 60 percent water; every single living cell in the human anatomy needs water to survive. Water ensures proper blood flow, lubricates the joints, cushions the skull and spine, and improves digestion.
And most people would not last four or five days without water.
Of course, that appears to be the most common estimate but the number can fluctuate. Depending on temperature, sunlight, physiology, and other factors, this number can be very different. Still, after oxygen, water is the thing that the human body needs most to survive.
For example, the human body can survive around one month without food. Mahatma Gandhi famously led a hunger strike, at the age of 74, that lasted 21 days. Though he had sips of water (obviously), his already slight build might have restricted his ability to survive without food. Other studies suggest that the average person could go perhaps another week or two more, depending on a few variables like weather/heat, their relative size, physical exertion, etc.
Accordingly, George Washington University professor of biology Randall K. Packer explains that under the most extreme conditions, the average adult can lose between 1 and 1.5 litres of sweat. He says, “If that lost water is not replaced, the total volume of body fluid can fall quickly and, most dangerously, blood volume may drop.”
Of course, when blood volume drops so does blood pressure and then body temperature…and it only continues downhill from there. In fact, any dehydration which results in a loss of at least 10 percent of the body’s water supply should be regarded as a medical emergency; and without intervention can/and will lead to death.
With that in mind, it is imperative that you always make sure you can find access to water. In an emergency, even drinking water of questionable purity may buy you more time to find appropriate assistance. If you have a water source, you will have the energy to forage or hunt and build a shelter over the coming days or weeks and to continue looking for help.