Bruce Lee’s Death Caused by Drinking Too Much Water, New Research Says

New research claims to have solved the mystery of actor Bruce Lee’s death. The martial arts legend died in July 1973, when he was 32, with doctors ruling the cause of death at the time as brain swelling.

However, a study published in the December issue of the Clinical Kidney Journal suggests Lee died “from a specific form of kidney dysfunction: the inability to excrete enough water.” Researchers from Madrid, Spain, say Lee likely died from hyponatremia, which is when an “abnormally” low concentration of sodium is in the blood, which can be caused by too much water in the body.

According to the Mayo Clinic, sodium helps to regulate the amount of water that surrounds and is inside your cells. “We 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 hyponatremia, cerebral oedema and death within hours if excess water intake is not matched by water excretion in urine,” the paper concludes. “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.”

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.

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