Submitted by Brandon Ivey, MNW resident and IFA Certified Personal Trainer

Drinking water may not be the only thing that can help you lose weight but it is one of the easiest efforts you can put in into your weight loss diet plan. Different from saying no to that piece of cake or going to work out to run on the treadmill, drinking enough water requires little willpower. You have absolutely no excuse for not drinking enough water no matter how young or how old you are.

About 75% of your body consists of water. Water is mostly found in your cells and the rest of it is in your blood vessels and the spaces in between your cells. When you feel dehydrated this is a sign that you are losing more water than you are drinking.

When you exercise, most of your water loss is through sweat. When you sweat, your body can lose a great deal of water as it tries to cool itself off. Just a brisk walk in warm weather, for example, can make you lose a pound of water as your body tries to resume its normal temperature. You need to drink after exercising to replace this water loss.

If you get hungry at odd times it is better for you to drink a tall glass of water than getting a snack. Especially when it is during the middle of the night, or when you are just about to go to bed, the food that you eat will not digest in your stomach. It will just build into fat as you lay there. So it is better to drink water because you would save the calories and you still get full. Many of diet books recommend drinking a glass of water before you go to a social event because it will help stop you from overeating the unhealthy snack foods while you are at the event. 

Water is a great liquid because it fills us up and keeps us from dehydration and over eating. Also water is a better source of liquid to drink calorie wise and kidney wise rather than constantly drinking drinks like Dr. Pepper or a Coke or Sprite etc. 

Another reason why drinking water is good for you is that water increases your metabolism. Water can flush toxins from your body including those produced during exercise. Your metabolism will slow to conserve energy when you have not had enough water to drink. Your organs can’t and won’t function as efficiently. Studies have shown drinking water has been proven to contribute to your body ability to burn calories and dehydration helps stop the fat burning process. 

Your body needs the correct daily amount of water to function properly, especially before during and after exercise. Drinking water also keeps you healthy because water flushes toxins from your body’s system, including those produced during exercise. Water aids in keeping your joints lubricated–very important for both daily functions and in preventing your body from injury during exercise.

Signs of dehydration or indications that you need to increase your water intake:

  • The most obvious is the thirst mechanism. If you are thirsty your body is need of water, pure and simple.
  • A decreased output of urine. In times of dehydration, you may notice that your urine is more yellow and concentrated.
  • Heart palpitations, muscle cramps, and nausea during exercise.
  • Your sweating may stop and your eyes and mouth may become dry when dehydrated.
  • If you are extremely dehydrated, you may feel confused and weak due to improper blood circulation to the brain and your other organs.

In short, drinking water is vital to your weight loss efforts. Whether you’re just embarking on your weight loss plan or have been steadily making strides for some time, make sure you’re drinking enough water for your body to function correctly.