Why Does Drinking Water Help You Lose Weight?

Why Does Drinking Water Help You Lose Weight?

In today’s age of ultra-complex weight-loss schemes, space-age gyms, and health food eating crazes, your options for losing weight and getting fit are about a dime a dozen. A lot of people who are unsuccessful with their weight-loss plans are simply unlucky, getting into a plan or program that doesn’t suit their needs.

Did you know that the simple act of drinking water can help get you to your weight-loss goals? Life’s most essential ingredient may also be the secret weapon to sculpting your beach body, and you didn’t even know it!

“Wait,” you may be saying. “Why does drinking water help you lose weight?” After all, like so many other things, if it sounds to good to be true, it usually is.

However, recent ground-breaking research, as well as general knowledge long held by doctors and fitness professionals, seems to confirm the notion.

A recent study published in the journal “Obesity” found that water really can be a helpful aide in shedding those pounds. The study was held at the University of Birmingham in the UK, and led by Dr. Amanda Daley. While the study’s findings have yet to be replicated on a wider scale, the results are striking.

In the study, Dr. Daley recruited 84 adults with obesity, who participated in a 12-week experiment. The study participants were divided into two groups. One was instructed to drink 12 ounces (or one to two glasses) of water before each meal, while the other was simply instructed to imagine themselves as full.

Child drinking water

Dr. Daley and her helpers monitored the participants’ weight at the beginning, middle, and end of the study. The participants didn’t engage in any physical exercises.

It turned out that the first group, who drank the water, lost on average three more pounds than the other group. The first group lost about nine pounds, which, according to Dr. Daley, is what you could expect from participating in a Weight Watchers plan.

How did water become some sort of miracle weight-loss cure?

Dr. Daley explains it simply…

Water before meals fills up your stomach and makes you feel more full, restricting your impulse to gorge on food. The human body only needs a certain amount of energy per day, and gorging usually takes you far above that requirement. All that extra food is usually stored as fat, unless it’s burned away through exercise.

Dr. Daley cautions people, however, from treating water as the holy messiah of weight loss. It must be paired with a conscious and active effort to engage in healthy lifestyle choices, such as eating nutritious meals and exercising regularly. Water before meals, however, can be a great way to start or boost your weight-loss plans.

A lot of people mistake thirst for hunger pangs, in the process eating unhealthy snacks or simply overeating. A great way to avoid this pitfall is to drink a glass of water as soon as your stomach starts complaining. If the pangs persist, you’re most likely hungry – but go for that apple instead of that Kit Kat!

Water bottles

Put another way, water can be seen as the body’s primary lubricant. It makes up 55-75 percent of total body weight. Just like a car needs oil, if you don’t have enough water in your system, all of your body’s major functions perform less efficiently.

Here are just a couple of ways drinking 8 to 12 glasses of water per day can help you become healthier and leaner:

  1. It helps the liver metabolize, or burn, body fat
  2. While eating carbs (e.g. bread, rice), water helps your body prevent that food from being deposited as fat
  3. Water fuels your muscles, increasing size and strength, and therefore its fat-burning capability
  4. Drinking water means you’re not drinking sugary drinks like Coke/Pepsi

When exercising, your body requires about 16 ounces of water to burn one pound of fat. Without an adequate supply, you’ll not only make your muscles less efficient, you’ll also tire yourself out way more quickly, leading to an inefficient workout.

On its own, drinking water probably won’t turn you into a lean, mean, fat-burning machine. It does, however, work great as a supplement to your existing weight-loss program, or a way of motivating yourself during a particularly tough transition to healthy living.

Why does drinking water help you lose weight? Well, why don’t you give it a try, and find out for yourself. One way or another, your body will thank you for it.

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17 thoughts on “Why Does Drinking Water Help You Lose Weight?

  1. This is a habit that I need to pay particular attention to. I tend to drink a lot more teas and sugar free Redbulls. I have heard that water is very good at making you feel so you do not eat too much. I should incorporate this more into my life.

    1. It certainly sounds as if you could do with a bit more water in your life Bryan – Red Bull is not the best choice of drink ( regardless of the sugar free label ), Tea also contains caffeine!

  2. Hi Chris, I’ve been reading through many great articles here on your sight. I really enjoy your book reviews! Today, I learned even more reasons to make sure I drink more water. I live in the desert – and can you believe that I really dislike water? I have to fancy it up in order to enjoy it. So I turn to fruit and flavour additives – but the main point is that I consume. It fills me up and is good for me! Thanks for all your expertise. You’ve got a great website, packed with great resources!

    1. Hey thanks Kim!

      Can I ask what desert you reside in – sounds like nice weather! ( I’m stuck in Wales in the UK so most days are filled with rain I’m afraid! ).

  3. Chris,
    I was having a bottle of water when I came across this post. I have long been told that lots of drinking water will help you lose weight and flush the bad things out of your body.
    We have a small fridge for beverages and have a case of water and maybe two sodas. When I drink water all day I have more energy during the evening. I also think drinks like soda bloats you more than water with the same intake, as it will not go through your body very quickly.
    Thanks for the information on why drinking water helps you lose weight, as most of the good weight loss programs recommends drinking lots of water. Now I know why.

  4. Well I must say that I really enjoyed reading your article as I am in a similar niche. Also, I love your style of writing. It is very engaging and easy to digest and comprehend.
    I already knew about drinking water as an aid to weight loss but there will be millions out there who do not so congrats on writing an article which explains all of this to them. With a style like that I truly believe you wil do well my fellow niche friend lol.

  5. Water consumption varies and it is a known fact that consumption of water actually helps with weight loss.

    Your review is very much informative and helpful as you have carefully outlined the benefits of drinking water and how it helps greatly with weight loss.

    Thanks for taking out the time to write out this review, it was indeed helpful and much appreciated. Cheers

  6. Hi there,

    Brilliant article and I was rather curious to read your findings. Water, I have heard many times helps in dieting here is one additional bonus of drinking plentiful water, helpls to maintain testosterone levels as drinking sugary drinks lowers testosterone levels and testosterone helps to burn fat and build lean muscle mass!

    Tip: On hot days squeeze in some fresh fruit juice into your water, it makes sure you get nutrients into the body as well as on hot days or in tropical climates you tend to drink a lot of water and possibly flush out essential micro nutrients.

  7. I always knew that staying hydrated was healthy, but I never really thought it was a true weight loss aid – this was an informative article on the subject. I have to admit that the results of the study from the University of Birmingham surprised me. I’m definitely going to start drinking some water before I eat to see if it helps me feel more satisfied with less at mealtimes.

  8. I know that may diet out there is recommending to drink water… and a lot of it. Up to 8 good glasses a day. It’s not so bad when like drinking that stuff. But for someone like me who can hardly take a sip of it here and there… feeling almost forced to do it… it’s not that easy.

    I found another option but I’m not sure it is a recommended one. Water with flavor in it. It’s better than nothing I guess… like a gym staff member said to me one day…but still not the best thing to do. What do you think?

    1. Well those waters are usually low calorie guy so that should be alright – what’s wrong with plain water though?

  9. I drink a lot of water and i’m always wondering if it’s too much. Years ago I was about 20 lbs overweight and I hardly drank any water at all. Then I learned ago I was mistaking thirst for hunger. My doctor told me to put a pinch of sea salt in my water for even better hydration. Thanks for this post.

  10. To drink a glass of water before a meal makes so much sense to me because you do feel more full therefore won’t gorge as much as if you hadn’t drunk it.

    I’m a tea addict myself – ha! So contrary to what many would say, I am drinking plenty of water but not in a pure healthy fashion yet I’m always ready for a big meal on an evening.

    My wife on the other hand drinks plenty of water in the day and works wonders for her weight so maybe this is the reason why she’s never as hungry as I am before a meal.

    Water does fuel the muscles and help in burning fat and it also prevents dehydrating causing headaches too which I am particularly prone to.

    How much water is recommended to drink per day, is there any advice on the amount?

    Thanks for you advice here, it’s about time I started taking my lifestyle more seriously.


    1. Hi Simon,

      Well drinking tea all day long isn’t really a ‘healthy’ idea…regardless of the amount of water in it LOL. Tea has caffeine in it and it is also a diuretic. This means you will be expelling water from the body a lot sooner than you need to.

      See the problem here?

      The amount differs from what report you read but the most steady belief is at least 8 glasses of water a day. As I mentioned – expert’s opinions tend to differ on this!

      Thanks for stopping by – hope this article helped you out!

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