The most important thing you can do to ensure your wellbeing is to make sure to drink lots of water. The U.S. The Geological Survey has reported that our bodies are composed of up to 60% water, and this water helps to rid the body of waste and maintain body temperature.
Dr. Albert Do of Yale Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut mentions that our bodies rely heavily on water, as it is present in some form in every cell, compartment, and bodily fluid, such as blood. He notes that our kidneys excel at controlling the volume of water inside of us; when we drink too much, they manufacture more urine; and when we drink less, they create less urine. However, the physical body is much more receptive to a lack of water, and is generally unable to keep living for more than a week without it.
Besides the obvious benefit of keeping your body running smoothly, one other advantage of drinking water is reaching a desirable weight. It’s not as straightforward as just drinking water and losing weight. This is what you should be aware of in relation to how drinking water might support with losing or maintaining weight.
What Does Science Say About Hydration and Weight Loss?
Some research exists that suggests that water can help with weight loss in more than one way. Dr. Do points out that there is no definitive proof that drinking water is directly responsible for shedding pounds, indicating that there might be some sort of connection between the two.
Cynthia Sass, a board-certified nutritionist based in LA, emphasizes that water alone is not a complete solution for losing weight, and should not be the only method people rely on for shedding pounds. She highlights that water is required in all bodily operations, such as blood flow, digestion, and elimination of waste, and that adequate intake of water can therefore be beneficial to wellness.
Water Consumption May Result in Less Food Consumption
A research paper, released in October 2018, that was published in Clinical Nutrition Research proposed that having water before meals may help reduce calorie intake, which could, consequently, promote healthy weight management. Subjects who had one and a quarter cups of water before their meal ate fewer food items in comparison to the individuals who drank the same quantity of liquid after the meal or who did not drink anything. This research was restricted to merely 15 people, all of whom were in the age range of 20 to 30, so more extensive investigations utilizing a more broad base of people are necessary.
Do suggests that consuming water prior to or with meals can result in eating less and consequently producing a decrease in weight. Consuming water prior to a meal may give the hormones responsible for feeling fullness enough time to become active, resulting in a reduced feeling of hunger when eating.
He emphasizes that consuming more fiber prior to eating, or choosing to have a lot of small snacks instead of three substantial meals could have similar effects.
Upping Water Intake May Help Speed Up Metabolism
An article published in Frontiers in Nutrition in June 2016 conducted a review of studies and determined that consuming more water led to weight loss due to reduced appetite and also increased metabolic rate as it increased lipolysis – the process of breaking down fats and other lipids into fatty acids.
Studies have revealed that intake of water has the potential to increase the metabolism rate, even if the effect is small; however, with time, it can lead to a significant impact, as suggested by Sass.
How Much Water Should You Drink to Lose Weight?
No exact number of water consumption has been determined to positively affect weight loss since a scientific link between the two has not been established. He recommends going by the guidelines from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine of 15.5 cups (3.7 liters or 124 ounces) of fluids a day for males and 11.5 cups (2.7 liters or 92 ounces) for females to remain hydrated. This includes water and fluids from food, he says.
When Should You Drink Water to Lose Weight?
Consuming water prior to eating could help reduce hunger pangs and stop you from overindulging. This is the best time to drink water if you want to lose weight. Consuming water following a meal can be beneficial to the digestive process. In general, it is advised by Sass that hydration be balanced out over the course of the day.
Furthermore, some liquids have compounds – like caffeine – that boost urine production, explains Do. In other words, they have an opposite, dehydrating effect. He recommends being aware of when more water is necessary, such as when you are in high temperatures or doing physical activity, and make sure to drink enough water afterward.
How Can You Boost Your Water Intake?
Do suggests that making regular water breaks part of your everyday routine can help you maintain healthy habits. Creating a connection between your water consumption and your daily routine (like having a glass of water after you brush your teeth before you go to bed, for instance) or setting alerts to prompt you to stay hydrated may be helpful.
A different option could be to include foods that have a high water content in your diet. The Mayo Clinic emphasizes that a lot of fruits and veggies are mostly composed of water and provides watermelon and spinach as exemplary examples, both of which are nearly completely water.
Carrying a water bottle and activating alerts on your phone to remind you to stay hydrated are ideas suggested by Sass. You could get a special water bottle, like the HidrateSpark, to work out how much liquid you need to drink every day and monitor how much you’ve taken in.
Sass proposes energizing yourself to drink water by adding a bit of taste to it. She recommends making your water more interesting by adding things like lemon and lime slices, fresh mint, cucumber, ginger, and pieces of seasonal fruit to it.
Ways Drinking Water Can Help You Lose Weight
Water consumption is not only critical for feeling quenched, it can also help with attaining weight loss goals. Drinking plenty of fluids can be helpful in losing weight, as it can reduce cravings and help to prevent hunger. These are ten methods for utilizing water that may contribute to weight reduction.
1. Reduces calorie intake
By drinking large amounts of water, you will satiate yourself quickly and thus eat a lesser quantity of food. Studies suggest that consuming a glass of water before eating can result in fewer calories being consumed, potentially aiding in weight loss. It won’t be instantaneous, yet it might help you lose ten pounds over the course of a year without putting in too much work.
People who consumed two glasses of water prior to each meal on a regular basis saw an additional loss of one pound per month. 1, 2, 3.
2. It boosts metabolism
Our bodies use calories for energy, and our metabolic rate (the rate at which our body discharges calories) establishes how many calories our body expels. Anything that increases your metabolic rate will be beneficial in terms of losing weight as it will burn more of your own fat cells and reduce your hunger.
Research suggests that ingesting 16 ounces of water can boost metabolic activity by thirty percent for a duration of two hours. The additional liquid does not make us expend any additional energy, however, it does tell the mind that we are hydrated and may result in us consuming less food. So drink up!
In addition, consuming water can aid in boosting your metabolic rate as it has no calories and no sugar content. Drinking a large quantity of water makes it more difficult to eat too much because it can help to lessen your appetite.
3. Reduces bloating
Consuming the proper amount of water can diminish puffiness and avert uneasiness. When you’re feeling puffy and bloated, it may cause you to be insecure about your physique. However, consuming lots of water can get rid of any extra air and cause you to look slim and fit. It could be advantageous to your liver, potentially hastening the process of shedding excess pounds.
4. Maintains healthy digestion
Most people don’t drink enough water throughout the day. Consequently, they face a range of unwanted consequences, such as digestive troubles. You may not realize it, but if you aren’t drinking enough water, it can affect your digestion and thus your weight loss. When the body is not properly hydrated, it won’t be able to break down food correctly, meaning that essential nutrients are not absorbed properly and calories can’t be processed correctly. This could possibly make you even more famished than before!
5. Increases energy levels
The majority of your body mass is composed of water; if you don’t drink enough of it, your body will try to obtain energy from elsewhere. Essentially, if you feel ravenous throughout the day, it could be an indication that you are not consuming sufficient water. Consume at least eight cups of water every day to keep your metabolism functioning properly and energy levels consistent.
Ingesting water can result in higher energy levels by aiding to keep your cells moisturized. Lack of hydration can result in exhaustion and is a frequent contributor to feeling faint or dizzy. Drink plenty of fluids, keep your sugar levels up, and you’ll be full of vitality throughout the day. It’s vital to stay hydrated when working out frequently, since not drinking enough water can cause your muscles to become cramped or painful.
A Final Word About Hydration and Your Weight
It is essential to our health that we have water, since it is a necessity in order to keep living. Although ingesting water can assist with weight loss by decreasing the amount of calories or increasing metabolism, it’s not possible to slim down by only consuming liquid.
Different quantities of water are necessary daily to obtain weight loss, ranging from a half an ounce to one ounce per pound of body weight. This should be enough to bring about the desired result.
Some of the regular techniques water facilitates shedding pounds are speeding up metabolism, consuming fewer calories, getting rid of impurities, amplifying energy, and improving digestion.