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The short answer is YES, drinking the recommended amount of water per day can help you lose weight. Although the role of water is well known to me and the majority of people, I was surprised to see in the comments and discussions on our Facebook fan page that some people still wonder if water can help you lose weight. This gave me the idea to expand more on the benefits of water for health and weight loss and help everyone appreciate the importance of drinking 6-8 glasses of water on a daily basis.
8 Ways water promotes weight loss
#1 Fullness and appetite control
Drinking a glass of water before your meal is good for controlling your appetite while drinking water with your meal will give you the feeling of fullness faster. Although water won’t stay very long in the stomach, if you drink water regularly you will be able to sustain the feeling of fullness for longer periods.
#2 Can minimize cravings for snacks
How many times you have this feeling of wanting to eat something but don’t know what? It’s those times that you stand in front of the fridge or opening the kitchen cupboards looking for that something and at the end you end up eating a snack loaded with unnecessary calories and sugars. A well-known secret shared by many dieticians is to drink a glass of water and wait for 10 minutes. In the majority of the cases water will do the trick and you will save many calories and guilt. If after the 10 minutes you are still in need for a sweet or snack then go for healthier alternatives (some are even less than 100 calories).
#3 More energy, more activity, faster weight loss
Water does not give you energy like food or other drinks but it helps in many other ways. Keeping your body hydrated is proven to act against headaches while improving focus and memory. How does this relate with weight loss? You have more chances of finding the energy and courage to work out or follow your diet than when you are tired, unfocused or with a headache.
#4 Zero calories!
You can drink as many glasses of water you want per day without worrying about calories. Water has 0 calories and is the most natural drink you can have. In addition by drinking water you are essentially reducing the consumption of other drinks, some of them carrying a considerable amount of calories and sugars. Of course there are healthy weight loss drinks to consume but none of them is essential to the body like water.
#5 It’s a source of motivation!
Believe or not water can be a source of motivation that can help you achieve your weight loss goals. Every time you drink a glass of water you will be reminded of your goals and the feeling that you are actually working towards your goals is a great motivating factor.
#6 Aids digestion
Water aids digestion and promotes the normal functioning of many body organs including the liver. Lack of regular intake of water will slow digestion, decrease fat metabolism and give you the feeling that you are bloated and tired.
Hint: The body needs 1 liter of water for digestion purposes for every 1000 calories you consume.
#7 Reduces water weight (water retention)
Water retention occurs when the body retains excess fluids in the tissues in an amount above standard. In the fitness industry this is referred to as water weight and one of the ways to lose water weight is to drink the recommended amount of water per day.
#8 Detoxing, muscle tone and healthy skin
Regular consumption of water will wash out unnecessary toxins from the body helping organs function better, toning the muscles and moisturizing the skin.
Daily needs for water (for men and women)
The recommended intake of water per day is:
3.7 liters for men
2.7 liters for women
*People who exercise regularly or perform intense physical activities may need more water per day.
10 Tips for drinking more water per day
- Start your day with a glass of fresh cold water (iced water stimulates metabolism increasing the number of calories you burn)
- Drink a glass of water before your meals (15 minutes)
- Prefer water with your meals rather than any other beverage.
- Carry a small bottle of water with you at work and while exercising.
- Drink water every time you get a craving
- Set a reminder – if you tend to forgot about drinking water, use your phone or calendar and set daily reminders.
- Track your daily intake – some people find it easier to drink the recommended amount of water per day when they track the number of glasses consumed.
- Add lemon or lime – Lemons or limes can add a bit of taste to the water. If you are tired of drinking plain water all the time try it with lemons or limes.
- Keep it fresh – Make sure that you have water bottles in your fridge all the time.
- Find no excuses – drinking water is necessary for a healthy body and can also aid weight loss. Many people find excuses for not drinking water but believe me once you do it for 2-3 days it will become a habit.
Hint: Before reading one of our other articles on diet and nutrition go and drink a glass of water!Does water make you lose weight? by Alex Chris