Drinking plenty of water is a necessary part of any sustainable weight loss program. But does drinking water to lose weight really work? Water does more than just quench your thirst; it may even help you drop a few pounds. Choosing water over sugary drinks saves on calories, keeps your organs functioning, and helps you burn fat. So, how much water should you drink each day, and what’s the perfect temperature? Here’s a breakdown on how water affects your body and how drinking water can help you lose weight.
Can Drinking Water Really Help You Lose Weight?
While no one is saying that sipping water throughout the day will transform your body overnight, there’s evidence of a water-weight connection and that an increase in hydration can lead to weight loss.
Considering your body composition is 60% water, it’s not surprising that water may impact weight loss. Your body works more efficiently when it’s adequately hydrated. This means that your body may burn fat and calories more effectively when you’re drinking enough water. Multiple studies show that drinking water may benefit weight loss.
Without proper hydration, your body will suffer. Dehydration effects on the body include dry mouth, feeling tired and dizzy, and peeing very little.
What Happens to Your Body When You Drink Water?
Consuming water is crucial to survival. It supports all your bodily functions, from your digestive health to your metabolism. There’s no question that drinking water is important, so the next question is, does the temperature matter? Should you drink cold, regular, or hot water to get the most benefits? This section breaks down that exact question.
Depending on your needs and your environment, one water temperature may be more beneficial than another. For example, when you’re in a scorching climate, room temperature water is better. If you’re looking to hydrate, cool tap water is ideal. In fact, some researchers have even found that the perfect water temperature for dehydration is 16°C (60.8°F). But overall, there’s no one-size-fits-all temperature for drinking water to lose weight.
There are some other considerations to take into account, too. Warm water can aid digestion and is also the prime detox choice. Hot lemon water in particular is a popular detox drink, as it promotes hydration, aids digestions, and helps relieve constipation. Drinking hot water can also provide a range of benefits, such as better circulation and reduced pain.
On the other hand, it’s thought that cold water may actually speed up your metabolism and burn more calories. You won’t be burning thousands of calories at a time or anything, but every number counts. One thing to note, though, is that cold water can be too chilly for people with sensitive teeth and for those who get frequent migraines and headaches.
How Drinking Water Can Help You Lose Weight
Consuming enough water is crucial for your overall health, but there is also evidence that drinking water can help you lose weight, too. Many studies show a positive relationship between increased water intake and weight loss. Here are four reasons why water benefits weight loss.
Natural Appetite Suppressant
Water acts as a natural appetite suppressant, as it takes up space in your stomach. When your stomach feels full, it signals your brain to stop eating. Often, it’s easy to mistake thirst for hunger. This is why it’s so important to stay hydrated. If you’re just about to tuck into an afternoon snack, it’s worth drinking a glass of water first to prevent overeating.
For example, in one study researchers found that overweight women who drank a glass of water thirty minutes before a meal experienced several benefits, such as a reduction in their body mass index, body weight, and body fat.
Increases Calorie Burning
While we’ve discussed ways that drinking water contributes to your overall health, there is also evidence to suggest that drinking water helps burn calories, too. And like we mentioned above, cold water may burn even more calories than room temperature water, as the body has to work harder to heat up the water for digestion.
Supports Weight Loss and Exercise
An essential part of weight loss is a regular exercise and workout plan. When you’re properly hydrated, your muscles work more effectively, and connective tissues and joints move more freely. It’s always important to drink plenty of water before, during, and after exercise, so that you can have the lifestyle and fitness level you want.
Removes Waste From the Body
When you’re dehydrated, your body struggles to move waste like urine and feces through the body. As waste builds up in the stomach, it can leave you feeling bloated, uncomfortable, constipated, and tired. All of this may add a few extra pounds and, what’s worse, stop you from being at your best.
Drinking Water to Lose Weight: How Much Do You Need?
So, how much water should you be drinking to lose weight?
It’s difficult to prescribe an exact amount of water you need to drink to lose weight, because everyone is different and everyone’s situation is different. How much water you should be drinking daily can depend on your age, activity level, body size, and temperature, among other things.
As a basic rule of thumb, most experts tend to recommend the 8×8 rule. With this, you would aim to drink eight 8oz glasses of water every day, for both weight loss and general health.
It’s important to recognize that drinking water alone won’t help you lose weight. Sustainable weight loss is about making healthy lifestyle choices. By eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly, you can find a way to lose weight that works for you. Weight loss is a journey that requires a whole-body approach.
Final Thoughts: Stay Hydrated
Water is an essential part of any weight-loss plan as well as day-to-day survival. Hydration is key for muscle function, fat burning, and good digestion, all of which support weight loss. The right water temperature depends on your situation and goals. Whether it’s for detox or weight loss, water is a crucial nutrient that can contribute to your success.
When you’re dehydrated, you may feel a lack of energy and motivation to work out and stay active. It’s not just your weight loss journey that benefits from staying hydrated but your brainpower, blood pressure, and overall well-being. So while you might be primarily drinking water to lose weight, you’re doing your health a favor, too.