Bruce Lee may have died because of drinking too much water, according to a new study.
Lee died on July 20, 1973, in Hong Kong, with cerebral edema or brain swelling ruled as the cause. He was 32.
But nearly 50 years later, Clinic Kidney Journal suggested that the martial arts master passed on because of his “kidney’s inability to excrete excess water.”
Authors hailing from Autonomous University in Madrid said the real cause of Lee's death was hyponatraemia, or the condition of having low sodium levels in the blood. This prevents an individual from excreting enough water by urinating.
They took note of Lee's “chronic fluid intake," use of marijuana which triggers thirst, and factors that may have affected his kidneys, like prescription drugs, alcohol, and injuries from martial arts.
"This may lead to hyponatraemia,” researchers said, adding that it may have caused the cerebral edema doctors found in 1973.
Researchers noted that hyponatraemia is found in up to 40% of hospitalized persons, and are calling for a "wider dissemination" of the concept that excessive water intake can kill.
“Lee made famous the quote ‘Be water, my friend,'" they added, "but excess water appears to have ultimately killed him."
Many theories have long circulated about Lee's cause of death, the South China Morning Post reported. These include claims that he suffered heatstroke, poisoning (possibly accidentally after consuming tainted aspirin), and assassination by triad gangsters.
There was also a supernatural curse in their family, according to other claims. But it was reverse-engineered following the accidental death of Lee’s son Brandon while filming The Crow in 1993 through defective blank ammunition.