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Death because of distilled water consumption

I know about the effects and myths about drinking distilled and/or deionized water. I'm not asking about such substances.

I wonder if a semi-immediate effect of drinking, say 1L pure 100% H2O is deadly or harmful.

My intuition says yes: either the reverse osmosis effect also present in distilled water is amplified so much that critical systems shut down due to extremely low concentrations in the organs/cells/... or the reverse happens, where the water is absorbed into cells making them burst, leading to among other things (massive) internal bleeding.

I'm particularly interested in scientific studies (if any) that were done (link to publication would be very welcome, my Web of Knowledge search-fu doesn't seem to work for this subject).

  • $\begingroup$ I don't know much about this subject but here are a few links you might find helpful. purchon.com/wordpress/biology/?page_id=173 sciforums.com/… $\endgroup$
    – Chimera
    Jun 22, 2012 at 21:17
  • $\begingroup$ @Kevin: Close, but not quite. The commercially available distilled water is not pure enough for what I mean. Unfortunately, I am unable to find any decent "purity classification" other than this little table that forgets to mention any solute concentrations whatsoever. $\endgroup$
    – rubenvb
    Jun 22, 2012 at 22:32
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The distilled water you find in a chemistry lab is pretty much as pure as it gets... For a classification see the Wikipedia purified water article. Even if you were to ask about perfectly pure water with no solutes whatsoever I don't see how the answer would be different from that of the other question. $\endgroup$
    – nico
    Jun 23, 2012 at 8:11


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