5 Reasons Why Water Is Good for Weight Loss

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5 Reasons Why Water Is Good for Weight Loss

Water is an essential nutrient that makes your body run smoothly and efficiently. Because the average adult’s body is about 65% water, it’s no wonder that we can only survive for about three to five days without it! Water transports nutrients and oxygen to cells, carries away waste products and lubricates our digestive tracts, joints and cartilage. The Health and Medicine Division of the National Academies of Sciences suggests an adequate total fluid intake of about 13 cups per day for men and about 10 cups per day for women. (Keep in mind that you may need more or less, depending on activity level, body size and environment.)

As the foundation for all body functions, this zero-calorie drink is a liquid asset, especially for weight loss. Here are five reasons why you should make water your weight-loss pal:

1. IT CURBS HUNGER AND PROMOTES SATIETY

The body’s “thirst center” in the brain, the hypothalamus, also regulates appetite. When you’re dehydrated, your body can perceive mixed signals on hunger, causing you to believe that you need to eat when you’re actually just thirsty. One study found that drinking two 8-ounce glasses of water before meals helped subjects lose more weight. Hungry? Drink some water first. Staying hydrated can help you ward off fake hunger signals.

2. IT KEEPS YOUR MIND SHARP

In addition to being naturally calorie-free, sugar-free and caffeine-free, water helps transport oxygen to the brain to ensure it functions at optimum levels. Even mild dehydration can impact your cognitive performance, tamper with your mood and make you feel fatigued. These effects can lead to mindless stress eating, poor food choices and, ultimately, breaking the calorie bank. Next time you’re feeling spaced out, try drinking some cold water to zap the sluggishness out of you.


READ MORE > 9 WAYS TO LOSE WEIGHT THAT AREN’T JUST DIET & EXERCISE


3. IT POWERS YOUR WORKOUTS

In addition to boosting your metabolism, water helps prevent muscle cramping, so you can work out harder and longer. Take note that your water needs increase after working out. During long endurance workouts, drink water with carbohydrates and electrolytes to help maintain fluid balance and prevent post-exercise exhaustion.

4. IT HELPS YOU STAY REGULAR

From start to finish, water keeps your digestive system running smoothly. The saliva in your mouth contains water and digestive enzymes to break down your food. In your stomach, water balances the acidic environment to prevent ulcers, indigestion and heartburn. If you’re following a high-fiber diet, be extra diligent in drinking water, as fiber depends on it. Soluble fiber absorbs water to become a gel like mass that slows down the rate at which food leaves the stomach, and insoluble fiber traps and retains water to add bulk and moisture to your stool, which prevents constipation.

5. IT HELPS YOU SAVE ON CALORIES

Liquid calories like juices and sodas don’t fill you up, and their high sugar content can cause insulin spikes that can set you up for a crash. According to this systematic review, drinking water in place of sugar-sweetened beverages resulted in less weight gain over a four-year period. If you want more pizzazz than plain water, try sparkling water, or give it a flavor makeover with berries, cucumbers, mint or grapefruit.

Make water a part of your weight-loss journey by getting enough of this essential nutrient in your daily diet. Try these 20 great life hacks to help you reach your goal, and don’t forget to log your water on the MyFitnessPal app — we make it easy to track your intake. Drink up and stay hydrated!

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  • Sherrie

    Plus ice water helps burn calories, just by your body trying to warm it up 😉 (thats not science just playful banter)

  • Nice article! Water has lots of health benefits and it’s beneficial for reducing weight too. Metabolic rate increase slightly with consumption of water. Which helps in burning calories. 🙂

  • Drinking a lot of water can be a useful tool in a dieter’s arsenal when
    weight loss is a goal. It helps boosts your metabolism, suppresses your
    appetite, and helps you shed water weight. Getting in the recommended
    8-10 glasses a day can be difficult, but with determination, you will
    soon be on the right track of using water to your weight loss advantage.

    • Not A. Dumbass

      If 8-10 glasses of water is difficult you suck at life.

      • Sam

        Lol nice…..

  • Great article, water is a big need of our body, and you write amazingly about water, nice points.

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  • Inita

    I hate,water….I might get 3-5 cups a day. That an increase from 1-2 cups a day.

  • Marsha Jackson

    This is a great post! They say knowledge is power, but only if we put that knowledge to use. I’m so ready to start adding some of these things to my daily routine!

  • Joshua

    I drink straight from a gallon container. You can guzzle from one of those with practically no effort. 🙂

  • Amy

    When I gave up sodas, I found the more water I drank, the more I grew to like it. Now, it’s all I drink and I love it! I also prefer room temp water. I find it easier to guzzle that way. Find what works for you- ice cold or room temperature. We are what we eat….and drink!

    • epickett

      Did you quit sodas cold turkey? I’m not physically addicted to them(no withdrawal if I stop), but I *do* enjoy the taste.

    • BluePotion

      I prefer room temp also. I transitioned from water to seltzer because I love carbonation and hated flat water. Now I drink water at home only and I don’t mind it anymore.

  • Trey

    Started drinking water and I feel a million times better! More sweat when I workout and I love it and don’t eat near as much!

  • Therese

    Major omission: a great deal of those “10 cups” is found in the food you eat!

  • Charlene Evers Maguire

    I used to drink a glass or two of water per month. Then, in my 50s, I tried to pass a kidney stone. Tried. From that point on, I forced myself to drink what I considered a repellent beverage. And now, in my 60s, staying active and healthy, I find that I enjoy my water. All 10-16 servings a day of it! And while I do still have “silent stones” (embedded in the walls of my kidneys versus in the collection area), I don’t worry about passing one. I won’t as long as I stay hydrated! So word to the wise, DRINK THAT WATER!

  • Brittany

    I have to be careful not to drink too much water and get enough sodium. I can’t eat dairy or gluten and try to avoid any type of added sugar. I drink a minimum of 6L a day, try not to go over 9, but most days I get about 7.5L. I’m a 5’8 150lb female, in mid twenties and pretty lean. All my friends make fun of me for how much I drink and my doctor told me when I was averaging 6L a day not to drink anymore and increase sodium intake. I don’t know if it’s just the warmer weather or if my body is adapting to my fluid intake but jeez.

  • First thing I do when I wake up is drink two glasses on water. I was trained to do that when I was young I was not regular in going to the toilet. Until now, I do that habit. It makes the rest of the 6 glasses easier to do up to the end of the day.

  • Jason Krohn

    I have lost a total of 22lb in the last 6 weeks! My Fitness Pal has helped a lot, it helps me keep and eye on what I eat. For the last 4 to 5 weeks I have drank nothing but water “except for the occasional unsweet tea on the weekend” and I do believe it’s a big reason why.

  • Linda Settler

    I bought 2 gallon sized glass beverage dispensers with spigots that fit in my fridge. Every day, I brew an 8 oz cup of flavorful, herbal tea; i.e. Celestial Seasonings Zinger teas, Tazo teas, Starbucks pitcher pack tea. After it’s been properly steeped, I pour the tea into the decanter, then fill the rest with clear tap water & place in the fridge to chill. Just this small hint of flavor makes the water more palatable, so easier to drink. When the 1st dispenser gets low I prepare the 2nd dispenser with a different flavored tea. That way I never run out.

  • Brittany Travis

    I used to hate drinking water because there wasn’t any “taste” to it and I always wanted a flavor to my drinks. I always went for a diet soda whenever I was picking something out, even when I knew that the aspartame was linked to my migraines…and I thought the transition from soda to water only would be difficult but I can’t even stomach any sodas at all now. I’m really glad that I made the change!

  • greenandchic

    I love water, but I need to make sure I get my calories in. I have the tendency to under eat while being very active and shutting down my metabolism.

  • Greg Dahlen

    I’ve done quite well on weight loss on my diet. For about nine years I’ve been living more than 90% on fluid milk products, cow milk and cow cream. So my diet is skim milk, 1%, 2%, whole, half-and-half, and pure cream. I started out at 255 on this (I’m six one), and quickly went to 175 and maintained. Then I learned a little more about my body and have maintained around 165 the last two years.

    But I don’t know, it is possible that you could do the same on a solid, mixed-food diet. The only diet I’ve ever tried is the milk one.

    Of course this diet involves copious amounts of water as part of the milk. I probably urinate 40 or 45 times a day.

    Disclaimer: this diet has not been approved by any medical authority as safe or healthy for human beings. But it has been excellent for me and I don’t think my body is so different from others.

  • BluePotion

    All I drink is water now since I gave up Coca~Cola. Even though I was thinner back then because I probably drank a can of coke in lieu of eating.