There are plenty of drinks that promise to help you lose weight and improve your overall health. Most of these claims are bogus but there is one drink that can help you out. The results of a recent study have been released and suggest that water can help you lose weight. There's nothing magical about water, drinking it won't jolt your body into a fat burning mode nor will it give you a perfect trimmed look overnight. However, if used in conjunction with a calorie deficit, it can help you eat less which will lead to weight loss.
Losing Weight 101
Losing weight doesn't require any special drinks or pills. Weight is a function of how much you eat. If you eat more than you need (calorie surplus), you'll gain weight. If you eat less than you need (calorie deficit), you'll lose weight. If you eat only what you need, your weight will remain the same. To figure out how many calories you need, use the calorie calculator.
To lose weight, you need to increase your calorie expenditure by exercising more, and decreasing your intake by eating less. When you accomplish this, your body will begin using stored fat as energy which will cause weight loss.
How Water Can Help
In the study mentioned above, 28 adults aged 55-75 were broken up into two groups. Both groups were put on a calorie restricted diet over 12 weeks but subjects in one of the groups drank two cups of water before each meal. The subjects in the group that drank water before each meal lost about 15.5 pounds over the coarse of the study while the subjects in the group without pre-meal water lost about 11 pounds.
The group that drank water before each meal ate 75-90 fewer calories per meal which resulted in a cut of 225-270 calories per day. The water helped them lose more weight because it increased their satiety before they ate resulting in a smaller meal. Drinking water can help you feel full which in turn will help you eat less.
Other Steps to Help With Weight Loss
As nice as an extra 4.5 pounds of weight loss over 12 weeks is, there are more steps you can take to lose weight quicker.
- Eat healthier foods. Healthy foods including 100% whole wheat bread/pasta, brown rice, vegetables, fruits, fish, lean meats, nuts and legumes are lower in calories and a lot more filling than junk food such as potato chips, pizza and take out. Improving your diet will help you lose weight and lead a healthier life without forcing you to count calories.
- Exercise more. Eating less is only half of the weight loss equation. Exercising more (strength training and cardio) will help you burn more calories, build more muscle and see quicker and better results.
- Eat more fiber. Fiber, like water, can help you feel full. Eating foods high in fiber (100% whole wheats, brown rice, vegetables) can help you reduce your calorie intake.
- Take small steps. Remember to make small changes whenever you're making improvements to your diet or exercise routine. Small changes will help your body better adjust to your new lifestyle which will increase the likelihood that you'll stick to the changes rather than revert to your old, unhealthy ways.