The importance of water after Bowen Therapy
Published on: 08/08/2023

Keep hydrated after Bowen

Author: Julian Baker

Water is essential for life and makes up a large proportion of the body – an average of 60% of body weight in men and 50-55% in women. This article will explain the importance of drinking water after a Bowen Therapy session.

Water has many functions in the body including:

  • regulating temperature
  • transporting nutrients and compounds in blood
  • removing waste products that are passed in urine
  • and acting as a shock absorber and lubricant in joints.

As a result of Bowen, the body increases blood supply to nerve endings and affects the movement of lymph around the body. To function effectively, these systems are entirely reliant on sufficient fluid. Drinking water following a Bowen Therapy treatment – fluid intake – is therefore essential.

Intake of water

In March 2010 The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) issued a report suggesting that women should aim to drink around 1.6 litres and men around 2 litres per day, with more required in hot weather or during exercise. Food is thought to contribute a further 20% of fluid into our system. Water can be taken in small regular sips to avoid an excessive increase in urination.

Loss of water

Water is lost throughout the day in urine, sweat and breathing, and to avoid dehydration this fluid needs to be replaced. Rehydrating fluids include water, tea, coffee, milk, fruit juice and soft drinks. Alcoholic drinks are not counted as they have a diuretic effect – that is, they cause more water to be lost in urine. Insufficient intake of fluids over time leads to dehydration.

It only takes 1%

Studies have shown that at about 1% dehydration there are negative effects on mental and physical function. These effects become more severe as dehydration worsens. Symptoms of mild dehydration include a dry mouth, headache and poor concentration. When the body detects that more water is needed, the kidneys reduce the amount of water lost in urine and so the urine appears darker in colour. Urine should ideally be pale yellow.

Drink water after Bowen

A common reaction to a Bowen treatment is headaches which is one of the first symptoms of mild dehydration. Clients may draw comparisons to the feeling of a hangover – headache, dry mouth and feeling nauseous. This is because the body, in order to eliminate the alcohol, has drawn on the body’s reserves of water to flush it through the kidneys. In the same way, if the brain identifies an area where elimination or hydration is needed, it will call on water supplies, and use the lymphatic system to flush out any debris or toxins, which may lead to mild dehydration if there is insufficient fluid present in the system.

This is why your therapist, without fail, will always advise you to increase your fluid intake after a Bowen session.


British Nutrition Foundation –

Further reading: ‘Your Body’s Many Cries for Water’ by Dr F. Batmanghelidj