Frequently Asked Questions from clients and book readers with answers
provided by Russell Mariani.


Water, Exercise, and Sweat

Q: I weigh 114 lbs and I exercise daily but have never been a sweater. I might get some beads
on my lip and around my hair line. How much water should I drink while exercising? Also how
much water should I have per coffee/alcohol drink a day?

Thx for your time,


A: Hello Wilder. Have a look at the overall watercure recipe instructions.

These are my recommendations:

For every hour of exercise where you sweat a lot and constantly…you need 16-24oz of water to
replenish what you sweat out. However, that is only when you sweat profusely…and as you
say…you are not a sweater…

Sometimes a lack of sweating, or the lack of apparent ability to sweat easily is a sign of chronic
unintentional dehydration. As you can properly hydrated, your body will sweat in a normal and
natural way.

For every cup of coffee or alcoholic beverage, or glass of wine or pint of beer…we may need to
drink an additional 16-24oz of properly salted water…to make up for the diuretic effects of those

I hope this is helpful.

Watercure Recipe and Salt

Q: I have a quick question about the 16-24-32oz of water that Russell suggests in the morning
with Celtic salt. Which amount is it and won’t that salt create water retention? Thank you. Maria

A: Hi Maria. Thanks for your questions about the water and salt.

First of all, even the very best salt in the world, if consumed in excess will cause health problems
including water retention. So, like everything else in life, balance is the key. I have been using
and recommending the watercure recipe suggestion of one quarter teaspoon of celtic sea salt
per quart of water with hundreds and hundreds of people during the last 17 years and it works
great. It’s important to start with a tiny amount of salt per quart and build up gradually. If your diet
contains salt in other places then the amount in your water might be better at one eighth of a
teaspoon per quart. There is a vast difference in quality between commercial grade refined,
processed, white table salt and organic quality, medicinal value celtic sea salt. Avoid the
commercial quality white table salt…use the celtic gray sea salt.

Everyone’s goal is to be drinking half our body weight in ounces of water per day between the
hours of waking up and the time just before our evening meal. We should not drink after
dinner…except for very small amounts.

Within the first hour of waking up each day we should plan on consuming, 16, or 24 or 32 oz of
body temperature water and salt depending on our body weight and activity level and comfort
level. We sip the water slowly giving our body time to absorb it. If you weigh less than 150 lbs,
start with 16oz within that first hour. If you weigh between 150 and 200lbs, start with 24oz. If you
weigh 200lbs or more…start with 32oz. Now, that said…all of these amounts are built up to
gradually over several days or even several weeks. But once you have established the correct
amount of water for that first hour each day, based on your weight, you should keep that very
consistent, day after day after day.

Thank you for your question Maria and I hope this is helpful.

Parasites, Cleansing, and proper Hydration

Q: I purchased and read your book, however, there was not much information on parasites and how
to get rid of them. I am taking the usual herbs: black walnut, wormwood, etc. I am eating pumpkin seeds and the like and have even bought a zapper through a naturopath. Do you have any further info that could help? Your book is great and I’ve told many friends about it, one of whom has already purchased it

Thank you.


A: Thank you for reading my book and thank you for your questions.

Since publishing the book in 2006 I have found myself dealing with more parasite cases than
before. This means that after proper hydration, whole foods diet, colon cleansing, and digestive
system supplements are all in place; as described in my book; I now take people through kidney
cleansing and liver cleansing. The Kidney and Liver cleanse materials come from the same place as the colon cleanse products The American Botanical Pharmacy The Liver Cleanse label says LV-GB-AP which stands for Liver-Gall Bladder-Anti-Parasite cleanse.
Sometimes parasites are only in the colon and so an effective colon cleanse will get rid of them.
But more often than not; the root of the parasite is in the Liver and so that organ must be
effectively detoxified as well.

After all these cleanses; it is also helpful to do micronutrient boosting with therapeutic amounts of the blue green algae from New Earth Using this approach I have been successful in helping people get rid of their parasites.

I hope this information is helpful to you. You might consider working with me directly and
becoming a client. Let me know if you would like information about that.

And thanks again for your email.

Leaky Gut and Fungus in the Lungs

Q :Russell,

1) I have a question concerning “Leaky Gut” and “fungus in the lungs”. I am well aware that our
immune system must have a well working digestive system to keep us healthy.

2) Recently I was told by a friend that a “leaky gut” or non working digestive system, allows
fungus, which is on all root plants we consume to pass into other parts of the body. The fungus
can pass into the lungs where it can cause major breathing problems. These problems are/could
be sinus, allergies, repertory infections that some of us get (myself included on that one).

3) She said normally the body secretes a -do not remember this word – acid that kills fungus on
contact and it causes no harm.

4) With a proper working digestive system, good flora in stomach, large and small colon, this
problem would clear itself up and if you had fungus in your lungs that too would be gone.

5) Is this a true statement?

6) Would our products clear this problem?

7) Would a person have to consume mega amounts to do that?

Thanks ever so much.

A: Dear Nina,
1)Yes, you are correct; 80% of the antibody producing cells of the immune system is
manufactured in glands in the small intestine called “Peyer’s Patches” and the B-vitamins
produced by the gut flora are essential in the production of healthy immune cell components.

2) Yes, very possible. This is the reason that root vegetables and all fresh organic vegetables
for that matter; must be properly washed before consuming. Leaky gut (called Intestinal
Permeability) is a huge problem but can be corrected.

3) She could be referring to the hydrochloric acid in the stomach; which is one of its jobs; to kill
any invasive micro-organism that enters our stomach.

4) Correct

5) Yes!

6) Yes, but not alone, other factors need to be in play.

7) Not necessarily; only if you were silly enough to rely solely on supplements to try to correct
this problem. What is necessary is the whole toolbox of Functional Nutrition. This is all explained
in the Journey to Better Nutrition on the Simplexity Health website.


Thank You


Daily Hydration and proper pH Balance

Q: Dear Russell,

It has been over 10 years since I participated in your seminars here in Vancouver, BC, however I
always remember your teachings and have bought many copies of your book published a few
years ago. I am wondering why, when advocating proper daily hydration that you do not mention
that water should be properly pH balanced to alkaline as most tap or bottled water, whether
filtered or not, is definitely acidic.

Hi Savannagh,

Thank you for contacting me with this great question/concern. Because we know, absolutely,
that the proper ph of our blood and lymph and tissues is vitally…critically important to our health.
My experience is that by purifying my tap water with a solid carbon block purifier…which leaves
some minerals in tact; then adding the correct amount of Celtic Sea Salt to the water…it does
become a good alkalinizing influence. Blood test results from many clients proves this to be the
case. I hope this answers your question…addresses your concern. If not, please let me know.


Porridge Cookware and Storage Containers

Hi, Russell. In your book you explain how to cook the grains for morning porridge. You
recommend using a stainless steel pot and slowly cooking the grain over the stove. I have a
small crock pot and was wondering if using it would be okay. By adjusting the quantity of water, I
can slowly cook the grain over night and it would be ready for breakfast.I also have a question
about the storage of grains. I have canisters that are made of clear plastic. Would the plastic be
harmful to the grain?
Thanks, Karen A.

Hi Karen,
Thanks for your email and your questions. The ideal cooking device for whole grains is a
stainless steel pressure cooker. I recommend the Kuhn Rikon Duromatic brand. You can look it
up on the internet or purchase it direct from the Kushi Institute Store or phone them at
800-645-8744. Electric appliances are not ideal for any type of cooking, especially if you are
trying to recover from sickness or disease. This would include electric stoves in general, and any
and all electric cooking appliances, like a crock pot. However, if these are not changes you can
make to your kitchen or your cookware, right away, or any time soon, don’t worry about it and
simply do the best you can with what you currently have available to you. As long as each grain
is thoroughly cooked and the end result is moist, delicious, still somewhat chewy and not too wet
or heavy, it will be fine…however you choose to get it into this condition! Grains, beans, nuts,
and other kinds of storage/pantry staples are best stored in glass or ceramic containers
designed for that purpose, with airtight lids. Plastic is not ideal for many reasons and so I do not
recommend plastic storage containers for these important food items. Thanks again for your
questions Karen!

Russell Mariani

The Watercure in General

The Watercure in General: One quart before breakfast? C’mon!

Many people have asked me this question. Like you, I shared your surprise and shock in the
very beginning when I first learned about the watercure. I never drank that much water in an
entire day; how was I supposed to drink that much before breakfast???

Here is the answer/response I give to my clients. Some level of chronic unintentional dehydration
is one of the root causes of all digestive system malfunctions. So getting properly hydrated, and
staying properly hydrated is not optional, it’s mandatory. Lots of people and lots of experts have
all kinds of ideas and formulas for proper daily hydration. I learned my approach to proper daily
hydration from Dr. Feyerdoon Batmanhelidj over ten years ago, and this is the approach I have
found to be the most effective and that’s why I teach it to my clients, and that’s why it features so
prominently in my book.

Why so much water in the first hour of the morning before breakfast? When we wake up each
morning, our body is the most toxic, the most acidic, and the most dehydrated. Taking the right
amount of purified warm water with the right amount of salt is a gentle yet powerfully effective
way to let our body know that we are “back in the saddle” ready to provide our body with all the
things that nourish it best. Our body responds favorably to this kind of treatment and all kinds of

When you are first starting out it is not critical to meet the suggested volume requirements, either
for the first of the morning water, or the total daily requirement/suggestion of half your body
weight in ounces. What is critical, is that you have read the information about proper daily
hydration in my book, Healing Digestive Illness (page 121) and from Dr. B’s site, so that it makes
sense to you, and so that you can begin to move towards 100% compliance, gradually.
Gradually, gradually, gradually. This means different things to different people, and of course it
also depends on your size, shape, body-weight, age, condition, etc. If you weigh 120 pounds or
less, start with 16 ounces of water in that first hour for a week or more and see how that feels,
see how that works for you. Nothing should be set in stone. You need to listen to your body and
honor what you hear. I weigh 200 pounds. I drink a full quart of water first thing, within the first
hour of waking up, and I take a full hour to do it. I do take my supplements while I drink that first
quart, but I do not sit down to eat my breakfast of whole grain porridge, until that first quart is
completely consumed. I don’t rush, I don’t hurry. I take my time. This habit of the watercure,
nourishes me deeply. I can feel my body come alive every morning, as I drink this first quart of
purified, warm, salted water.

Speaking of salt, it’s the same advice. Move yourself towards compliance levels gradually. If you
put too much salt in your water too soon in your “experiment” you may not like it, and the strange
taste may discourage you from continuing. So start with a tiny amount of gray celtic sea salt in
your water, an amount that you don’t even detect. And build up to compliance levels gradually.
When my clients do this, they report a much more enjoyable process, and much better results
once their body is properly hydrated!

The Watercure Recipe and Water Retention

Q: In the watercure recipe you mention that we should take warm water with Sea
Salt. If taken everyday is it going to worsen the problem I have with water retention?
I am not supposed to put salt in my food or drink any beverage with too much salt in it.
Thank-you, Rosemary

A. Hi Rosemary. Megan forwarded your question to me. Water retention is often the result of
chronic unintentional dehydration, so being properly hydrated, via the watercure should prove to
be very helpful. Simply build up to the normal amounts of both water and sea salt gradually.

The medical directive to use Less Salt, and in some cases NO Salt, refers to commercial table
salt…a highly refined, chemicalized product that bears no resemblance whatsoever to organic
quality sea salt. So the doctors are right when they say that people should stop consuming
commercial white-bleached table salt. That kind of salt is toxic to the body and does cause many
health problems.

Sea Salt is NOT commercial table salt. Commercial table salt is almost 100% sodium chloride
which does not occur naturally anywhere; (with various trace amounts of chemical bleaching and
drying and preserving agents so no wonder it is toxic to the human body) Whereas organic
quality sea salt contains sodium, and chloride, and about 44 other minerals and trace minerals…
all conducive to our health…when taken in the correct amounts.

My suggestion is that you follow the directions for the watercure recipe very precisely and pay
particular attention to the suggestion that you build up VERY GRADUALLY to the correct
amounts of both water and sea salt. If you do this you should not run into any period of
adjustment problems and experience nothing but positive results.

Lastly, you do not mention this in your question, but if you are currently taking any medication to
deal with your water retention issues you should definitely consult with your prescribing physician before making any changes to your diet. The watercure recipe represents a significant
improvement to your diet and cellular metabolism and very likely will improve any condition you
currently have related to water issues in your body (like water retention) and this means…that if
you currently take medication to treat water retention…your medication dosage may need to be
adjusted to a lower dose and eventually to no dose needed at all. However, your prescribing
physician is always the best person to talk to you about any changes you make or might
consider making in the area of medications.

Most doctors are very happy to see their patients becoming more proactive in their own self care
by improving their nutritional status. More and more doctors are open to discussions with their
patients about the relevancy and efficacy of the medications they are prescribing. Please keep
this in mind going forward.

I hope this information is helpful to you Rosemary. Thanks very much for your question.

Hypertension and the Watercure

I just got your book and have a question about the use of sea salt in my drinking water as I have
hypertension. I don’t use salt, as a rule. Does hypertension change the equation – 1/4 teas. per
quart? Thank you. From Elizabeth B.

Hi Elizabeth,

Thank you for ordering my book. Here is my answer to your question. If you have hypertension,
or any diagnosed medical condition, the rule of thumb (ie medical ethics, professional courtesy,
etc) dictates that you consult with your medical doctor about any changes in your diet and
lifestyle and how these changes may affect your medical plan…especially as it may affect any
medications you may be taking for hypertension. Alas, many conventional doctors do not yet
understand the difference between organic seasalt and commercial refined table salt. Refined
table salt is indeed toxic to the body and should be avoided. Organic seasalt, on the other hand,
is essential for good health, and is known to be extremely helpful in the body’s ability to restore
normal function to various organs, systems, and cells. I think the best advice is this: inform
yourself and your doctor more about the benefits of organic sea salt in general, and the
watercure in particular, and then, if it makes sense to proceed, do so…and do so carefully, and
gradually, starting with just a few grains of salt per quart of water, and build up to the suggested
amount of salt over time. And of course, set up in advance, some medical monitoring, to make
sure your condition of hypertension responds favorably to the watercure, and not in any way,
adversely. And of course, look into the other suggestions in the book, and how you might
gradually integrate more of these as well. Thank you very much for this question, and I hope you
find my answer helpful to you.

Russell Mariani

Watercure and Blood Pressure

Hello- I purchased your book and am thinking of starting the water cure. I am treated with a very
low dose of Lisinopril for blood pressure. Will the salted water impact my blood pressure?

Thanks for your reply

Hi Kathy,
Thanks for your question about hydration, salt, blood pressure and blood pressure medication.
And yes, they are all connected. My experience over 40 years has taught me that “a well
nourished body doesn’t make mistakes.” And this means that when the body is consistently
receiving all the things it needs to maintain balance and harmony and health… a symptom like
high blood pressure (or low blood pressure) simply does not happen. So it is always interesting
to ask ourselves: “Why is my body producing this particular symptom or condition? What is my
body trying to communicate to me with this symptom? What changes do I need to make in my
diet and lifestyle in order to empower my body to make whatever corrections and repairs it needs
to make and restore my physiology to normal functioning? Think about it; our blood is a fluid,
which means that the total content as well as the texture (thickness or thinness) of our blood
must be affected by hydration levels. And it’s true; one of the root causes of blood pressure
imbalances is a state of chronic unintentional dehydration. The watercure recipe, which is a
method of restoring proper hydration levels to all the cells in the body on a daily basis, is a safe
and effective means to assist our body in restoring normal blood pressure levels. The amount of
sea salt in the water we drink is one quarter of a teaspoon per quart which is equal to one level
teaspoon per gallon. This is not alot of salt but it’s important to build up gradually when you are
first beginning the watercure, both in the amount of water you drink and the amount of salt you
put into the water. I have never found that anyone needs more salt than this in their water for the
watercure to be effective, so keep that in mind; but I have often found that; especially in the
beginning for some people, they do just fine with less salt than the suggested amount. How much less? It varies from person to person and so each person really needs to experiment and find out what works best for them.

It’s important to understand the difference between commercial table salt and best quality,
mineral-rich sea salt. Commercial table salt is a highly processed totally denatured, unnatural
and very imbalanced substance. Doctors and Health Practitioners are correct in banning it from
the diet. It should be banned. Commercial grade table salt is toxic and produces many adverse
health effects including hyper-tension and high blood pressure. Best quality, mineral-rich,
organic sea salt on the other hand is a substance that has been used in traditional healthy
human diets for thousands of years in almost all cultures all around the world. Just because a
product says “sea salt” don’t be fooled. There are many companies trying to cash in on the
increased consumer interest in gourmet foods and condiments including all kinds of interesting
salts. I have used Celtic Gray Sea Salt since the mid-1970’s and I continue to use it and
recommend it. You can find it in most Whole Foods Market stores or online at

Lastly, and most importantly, all questions about medication must be presented to your medical
doctor. Any time you make improvements to your diet and lifestyle, you are causing your
physiology to also improve. This means that cellular metabolism becomes more efficient. This
means that you will more efficiently utilize everything you put into your body…food, beverages,
supplements, AND medications. All medications produce adverse side-effects and it is your job
as a consumer of medication to make sure that your prescribing physician has adequately
informed you about the proper use of any and all medications you consume…and this includes
an explanation of adverse side-effects. It is always OUR own personal responsibility to inform the doctors in charge of our medical care (especially doctors who are overseeing any prescription medications we are currently taking) of any major changes in our health status. My experience is that most medical doctors are thrilled to discover that medications can be lowered and even discontinued altogether…if and when…their patient gets healthier. And…it is always the patient’s ultimate responsibility to be and become more proactive in their own self-care. This is the new medicine that is happening and it’s very exciting to be a part of it all.

Watercure and Dizziness

Q: Hello!

A good friend of mine, Dave, absent me your email about the Water Cure. I was doing it and noticed good results like not getting up to go to the toilet at night, and a seemingly better salt content to my body.

However, I noticed that I was getting dizzy when I lay down or got up from bed. It was only a few seconds but concerned me.

It stopped when I stopped the Water Cure. Can you please give me some guidance on this? Is it normal or too much salt?



A: Hi Tom,

Thanks for reaching out. It’s not normal to get dizzy at any point during the day or night, even for a few seconds.

The watercure is simply a means to an end. It’s a method of proper daily hydration. No doubt there are others. This method is the one that has worked best for me and my clients over the past 20 years. And it’s becoming more and more popular among athletes and many professional athletes too.

What happens, especially in the very beginning….as your body begins to work more efficiently as a result of being more properly and consistently hydrated….is many things. Every organ, system and cell…when properly hydrated…becomes more efficient…more nutrients coming into the cell….more toxins get expelled out of the cell….more repair work gets done…literally everything that needs to happen in every cell…happens…more efficiently…

Therefore…depending on what might need to happen inside your body… “shift” might also happen…temporary symptoms of imbalance…like slight dizziness…might occur…

Usually if this is part of a healing process…a process of your body getting “used to” being properly hydrated…it will not last long.

If you drink too much water too fast…if you increase from zero amount of salt in your water to one quarter teaspoon per quart…too soon… “shift” might happen.

I have never experienced any negative symptoms as a consequence of doing the watercure…only benefits…some very profound benefits.

I’ve been doing the watercure every day for almost 20 years.

And…everyone is different…and I don’t believe in set prescriptions for anything…although the watercure is the closest I have come to a “ pretty set prescription” for something.

So…thanks for your input…please feel free to experiment…with the amount of water…and the amount of salt…until you find what works best for you.


Ulcerative Colitis: Reverse Colostomy: Resection

Hello, my name is Frances. I read about your book and your work via the internet and have a
question for you on behalf of my mother. Have you worked with anyone post colostomy? My
mother was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis 10 or so years ago and did have a colostomy. Most
of her large intestine was removed. Subsequently she had it reversed. I am not sure if that is the
right term. But, ever since the reversal (it has been several years) she has a very restricted diet
and basically, it seems like her system cannot handle anything that her body could use
healthwise. Thus my question. I sent a message to my dad, with a link to your website, and asked him if he thought Mom might find your book useful. This was his response.. She thinks it’s too late, for her anyway, for finding a cure for colitis. It sounds interesting, but her diet is pretty
restricted. She has found certain things that seem to work and other things that give her trouble,
and the things that give her trouble are usually the things that one should eat for good digestive
system performance. So, I would be interested to know if you have had any success working with anyone who is in her position, given the limited information I have provided.


Hi Frances,

First of all, thank you for emailing me and asking this question about your mother. Please share
my responses with your Dad. And the answer is yes, I have worked with people with colostomies, and with reversals or reattachments or resections.

Basically, I get calls from people every single day who believe strongly that there is little hope for
improving their condition. (Clearly all hope has not died or they would not contact me.) My
position is this. It ain’t over, till it’s over. (pardon the sports analogy) The body has an almost
infinite capacity to regenerate and heal itself, as long as we know how to cooperate with it, and
provide it the things that nourish it best.

The Functional Medicine, Functional Nutrition model is quite different in philosophy and
approach than standard allopathic medicine. Functional Medicine/Nutrition believes in the
miracle of biology/physiology, and the innate ability the human body possesses to heal itself. It
even believes that this is in fact the number one agenda of the human body, to be healthy and to
function normally. Health is supposed to be the norm, not the exception. This model believes
strongly that the human body desires to be well and get well and to stay that way…but it depends
upon our cooperation with it for this to happen.

The issue is this: Does the person in question share these same beliefs? And have they been
taught how to cooperate with their own internal dynamic healing abilities? Most times, for most
people living in modern America, the answer is no. The Functional Nutrition Model is first and
foremost an educational model, the primary focus is on teaching. We are passionate about
teaching others how to become more proactive (and successful) in their own self-care.

I was misdiagnosed with colon cancer in 1973, when I was 18 years old. I did have ulcerative
colitis. I was told by my doctors at the time that it was “incurable” that I would have it my entire
life, that only drugs and surgery were my options, and that my diet had nothing to do with my
symptoms or condition. Well, all that “medical advice” turned out to be false, and the rest as they
say, is history.

I have been helping people to heal themselves from the full spectrum of digestive system
disorders since 1980, along with many other health problems. About five years ago, I decided to
focus primarily on helping people with digestive problems, and then two years ago, I started
writing my book, Healing Digestive Illness. My book tells my own healing recovery story, and then goes on to describe the five root causes of all digestive problems, and then outlines a step by step program to address those root causes. When people understand and follow my
suggestions, they get better. Not because I am some kind of genius, but because they are finally
doing the things that their own body, and their own digestive system, wants and needs them to
be doing. Why this information is not more available, is one of the reasons I wrote my book.

So, of course I suggest that you read my book. And, given your mother’s circumstances, as I
currently understand them, (which is admittedly, very little) I would also encourage you and your
Mother and Dad to consider working with me directly, by becoming a client, so that I can walk
your mother through my Intestinal Regeneration Program. I would predict, with great certainty,
that she is currently doing things that are (unintentionally of course!) insulting to her digestive
system, at the same time, not doing things that would allow her system to repair and heal, and
return to normal functioning, or at least close to it, at least dramatically improved over what is
happening now.

I don’t expect anyone to just take my word on this. So please examine the information on my
website and please feel free to phone me or email me with more questions. In a separate email, I will send you the information I send out to everyone who inquires about my counseling services
as they relate to the Intestinal Regeneration Program.

Thanks again Frances, for contacting me. I look forward to working with your parents in a way
that should dramatically improve your Mother’s condition. Happy Holidays to you and yours!

Russell Mariani

How much sea salt and water

Q: Hello. I have ordered your book on the benefits of water. I am excited to get it. I have
recently been diagnosed with IBS-Constipation, but have been dealing with it my entire life. That
is how I came across you and your books online. I have a question. I can’t drink a LOT of water
in one sitting. I have to drink 8 eight-ounce glasses of water a day. How much of the sea salt
should I put in one 8-ounce glass of water?
Thank you so much!


A: Hi Terry,

Thanks very much for your message. It seems you have some misinformation about the best
means to hydrate your body. That is very typical unfortunately as there is so much
misinformation out there about everything. The amount of water you drink each day is based on
your body weight. You need to drink half your body weight in ounces of water per day. In other
words, I weigh 200 pounds; so I drink 100 ounces of water per day. To which I add one quarter of a teaspoon of sea salt per quart (32oz) of water. And, very importantly, you build up to the
amount of water and salt gradually. I have attached my recommendations for proper hydration in a document called: The Watercure Recipe. Please read it over and see if you have any
questions about anything. I always suggest to people that they prepare their drinking water in a
32 ounce container (I use an old organic 32 oz glass milk bottle) and then pour from that. But, if
you were in the habit of using 8oz glasses you would add 1/16th of a teaspoon of sea salt per
each 8 oz glass of water.

Thanks again for your question, Terry!