Oklahoma Spring Water: The Secret To Living Longer?
SULPHUR, Oklahoma - Water. Refreshing. Cool. Clean. But could this thirst quencher also be the best medicine for what ails us? Nestled in the heart of Arbuckle country lies Sulphur, Oklahoma and its Chickasaw National Recreation Area.
More than 1,000,000 people visit the park every year, mainly for its plentiful springs. But many believe there is much more bubbling from these springs than just H2O.
Twila June credits the water for keeping her healthy. She grew up in Oklahoma but now lives in Arizona. She not only believes in the water's healing powers, but other benefits.
"In Arizona, I can't grow fingernails," June said. "If you drink this water, you can grow fingernails."
Eighty-nine-year-old Gladys Jacobs and her cousin Onita Williams drive 20 miles to replenish their supply.
"It makes me feel good," Jacobs said. "Can't do without it."
"It keeps her going," Williams said. "She'll get down but she'll drink her water."
But is there truly a medicinal miracle in the water?
"Smells like rotten eggs, but to us it smells like money," Local historian Dennis Muncrief said.
That smell is sulphur, and other elements naturally flow from the ground. The legend dates back more than 100 years. Muncrief said doctors would actually prescribe the water for patients, for anything from stomach aches to flea bites, and the same goes today.
"The doctor prescribed he come down and swim in the sulphur water everyday and that wasn't 100 years ago, that was like two years ago," Muncrief said.
One dried up well was a hot spot in the early 1900s. Adults and children would bring their own cups to the park, hoping to swallow their sickness away.
Park superintendent Bruce Noble has a message for non-believers.
"They need to come here and try it out for themselves and see what a wonderful place it is and how beautiful the water is and then they'll know," Noble said.
And if the smell of the water has you thinking you'd rather let your sickness run its course, Noble said taking the cap off your bottle for a couple of days will remove that pungent smell.
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