Is there something sabotaging your weight loss? Have you been eating more vegetables and protein, but you can’t seem to get over this hump? Have you ever thought to yourself, “if I drink more water will I lose weight?” If you haven’t directed your weight loss efforts towards how much water you have been drinking, you should.
We all have heard our parents tell us that it’s important to drink water. But why? Why is that tasteless liquid so essential?
Most importantly, our body is made up of approximately 60% water – the brain and heart is about 73%, our skin about 64%, even our bones are approximately 31% water. Depending on your sex, age, and body composition, you may be made up of a different percentage of water than the person standing next to you, or even your twin. With that being said, the function of water in the body ranges from regulating body temperature, lubricating the joints, and keeping our eyes moistened, to protecting body organs and tissues, carrying nutrients and oxygen to cells and helping our body dissolve minerals and other nutrients to make them accessible to the body; among many other things.
So aside from the obvious function of keeping us alive, why should we care about drinking enough water?
What many of us don’t recognize, is that water should be considered a nutrient as important as fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. It helps the neuromuscular coordination of your brain, reduces daytime fatigue, leads to healthier looking skin, stronger teeth and bones, and improve digestive functioning. Without enough water, we may become dehydrated – and if you are feeling thirsty, you should know that you have already reached a state of dehydration; dehydration can reduce endurance, cause cramping, slow your muscular responses and even decrease strength.
But, if I drink more water, will I lose weight?
Drinking water can naturally suppress one’s appetite. Have you ever been sitting and you think you feel your stomach growl, or you start to feel the pangs of hunger – and instead of immediately reaching for food you decided to drink some water…and then they went away? This phenomenon, which is really just humans confusing hunger for thirst, can even help lead to weight loss. How do you ask? Because instead of stuffing something in your mouth at the first sign of perceived hunger, replacing that with water will lessen the number of calories you’ve consumed in a given day. If you drink an entire glass of water 30 or so minutes before you eat a meal, chances are you will not eat quite as much. The more water that is in your stomach, the fuller you will feel, hopefully making you eat a little bit less. There have even been whisperings of increasing water intake to reduce fat deposits. Similarly, if you are properly hydrated, you will be less likely to retain excess fluid, aka, bloating.
A couple of things:
So if I drink more water, will I lose weight? The short answer, Yes!
Hydrating doesn’t require much effort, and it’s something that will make a significant difference in your life. Don’t blame a lack of time or accessibility for your under consumption of water, because there really is no excuse for it. Yes, at first you may end up having to excuse yourself from your desk to relieve your bladder, but as you continue to consume water normally, your body will adapt and you won’t have to run to the bathroom every 45 minutes.
If you aren’t sure how to incorporate this into your daily routine, don’t hesitate to ask a professional for a more personalized plan.