Another research has been conducted into Bruce Lee’s passing, and sheds new information on his cause of death.
“Be water, my friend” seems to be topic of research on kidney specialists from Spain.
“Did too much water kill Bruce Lee? Who killed Bruce Lee? The hyponatraemia hypothesis” is published in the December 2022 issue of Clinical Kidney Journal.
“Lee died at the age of 32 in Hong Kong on 20 July 1973, under mysterious circumstances,” the paper goes on to say on his death. “Up to now, the cause of Bruce Lee’s death is unknown, although numerous hypotheses have been put forward, from assassination by triad gangsters to the more recent suggestion in 2018 that he died from heatstroke.”
The research is not just another theory. It’s based on public documents, books and other clinical research.
Shannon Lee, Bruce Lee daughter’s manager had no immediate comment to The Times’ request for comment on the paper.
Here’s what the paper says: on the day of Lee’s death, he and producer Raymond Chow drove to the house of Betty Ting Pei, where they used marijuana and spend some time alone. Lee acted out some scenes from an upcoming movie and then drank water around 7:30PM which made him feel dizzy and had a headache.
Pei gave Lee an Equagesic pill which is a combination of meprobamate and aspirin, an anti-anxiety medicine.
Two hours later, Lee was found unconscious. A doctor performed CPR but to no avail. He was transferred to the nearest hospital and pronounced dead.
Lee’s death was officially stated as cerebral edema. Cerebral edema is also known as brain swelling. It’s a life-threatening condition that causes fluid to develop in the brain.
This fluid increases the pressure inside of the skull — more commonly referred to as intracranial pressure (ICP). Increased ICP can reduce brain blood flow and decrease the oxygen your brain receives. The brain needs an uninterrupted flow of oxygen to function properly.
Lee’s brain was 3½ pounds, ½ a pound more than the normal weight of a brain.
But the paper’s authors go even further: what caused the swelling?
“[W]e hypothesize that Bruce Lee died from a specific form of kidney dysfunction: the inability to excrete enough water to maintain water homeostasis…. This may lead to hyponatraemia, cerebral oedema and death within hours if excess water intake is not matched by water excretion in urine, which is in line with the timeline of Lee’s demise.
Hyponatremia means that the sodium level in the blood is below normal. Your body needs sodium for fluid balance, blood pressure control, as well as the nerves and muscles. Lee didn’t consume enough water that day (6-8 liters) to trigger that condition, but another evidence suggest that he was predisposed to the condition based on certain behaviors.
Lee had done a lot of experiments with his diet, including high chronic water intake and going on a juice diet. That made him prone, or more sensitive to hyponatremia, in which the body holds on to too much water, causing nausea, headache, cramping, confusion, fatigue, seizures and in rare cases coma from rapid brain swelling, which can result in death… which connects to what happened to Lee.
“The fact that we are 60% … water does not protect us from the potentially lethal consequences of drinking water at a faster rate than our kidneys can excrete excess water. Ironically, Lee made famous the quote ‘Be water my friend,’ but excess water appears to have ultimately killed him,” the paper authors state.
Lee’s death is a mystery and intrigue for many researchers and journalists, but this newest paper sheds another point of view on Bruce Lee’s death.
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