Why we need so much water

November 8, 2010

What does drinking water have to do with losing weight?  EVERYTHING!

Drinking water is not only important to your health, but it also helps you lose weight, says Thomas D. Yarnell, Ph.D.

“Water is necessary for the metabolism of your stored fat,” he explains.  Weight loss cannot occur without an active metabolism, which requires large quantities of water.”

WHY IT’S ESSENTIAL

According to the University of  Minnesota Water Resources Center, when your body gets enough water, stored water is released. Dieters need water because they have to get rid of waste products from the fat that is being used.

Our bodies demand hydration in order to perform to their optimum capacity, explains fitness expert Elizabeth Palmer Hale. In fact, because our bodies are made up of more than 75 percent water, we would perish without it.

“So, when you deprive your body of water, it reacts in the same manner as when we deprive ourselves of food – it holds onto what it already has in store instead of eliminating it,” Hale points out. “It is by far, the most important element of your weight loss program.”

EIGHT IS ENOUGH

Just how much water should we be drinking to lose weight, anyway?  At least eight 8–ounce glasses of water every day, says the American College of Sports Medicine.  If you exercise, you should drink six ounces of water for every 15 minutes of activity.

Although water plays a very positive role in our bodies function, many of us still aren’t consuming the standard eight glasses a day, Hale points out. “Many of us opt out of consuming water because we’ve never gotten into the habit of drinking it on a regular basis.”  If you really want to aide your weight loss efforts try to increase your water intake to a range between 80 and 100 ounces per day.  Just gradually add a little more each day and you will be at your goal in no time!

But, it’s a habit definitely worth developing, fitness and nutrition experts agree.  Water is, by far, the most important element of your weight loss program, especially if you want to lose weight permanently.

“We will spend money on miracle diet items and purchase workout videos and exercise machines.  Shouldn’t we take advantage of the one tried and true method that costs nothing?” asks Joanne Bednar of Motivation Station.

Water is as near as your kitchen faucet, doesn’t require a costly gym membership or designer workout clothes, and doesn’t take time from your busy day.  Drinking it is no longer just an option…it’s a necessity!

EASIER TO SWALLOW

If the thought of drinking 64 ounces of water each day makes your head swim (so to speak), you might want to try these suggestions by Hale.

  • Each day for a week, replace one of your usual beverages with a glass of water.  On the second week, replace two beverages with water, and so forth, until you’re drinking eight glasses a day.
  • Fill up a large juice container with water in the morning, and try to finish it by early evening.
  • Drink a glass of water before and during each meal.
  • Carry a filled water bottle with you whenever you leave the house.

MORE GOOD REASONS TO DRINK WATER

Here are still more benefits of drinking water, according to the University of  Minnesota Water Resources Center:

  • Water is a natural appetite suppressant, so you won’t feel hungry as often.  It also quenches your thirst more than any other beverage.
  • Water regulates body temperature and transports nutrients.

Water helps keep muscles toned, skin soft and blemish free, and joints lubricated.

By Andrea Rollin

Andrea Rollin is a journalist with more than 15 years experience.  She currently writes for the South Florida Business Journal, the EastSider, the Delray Times and other publications.  This article was featured on eDiets.  To read more, go to www.ediets.com.

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