Drink Up To Slim Down

Water might just the secret weapon to losing weight. Of course, there are multiple factors that can influence weight, one of the major ones being a healthy diet. So…you may be wondering how is it that water can help us lose weight?

A recent study found that those who were improperly hydrated had higher body mass indexes (BMIs) than those who were properly hydrated. This study also found that those who took in too little water had 50 percent higher odds for obesity. There are several factors that could explain these results:

  • When we are dehydrated our bodies send signals to us indicating that it is lacking something. Many of us confuse signals of dehydration as signals that we are hungry, so we eat something instead of drinking something. If we stay hydrated, we will feel fuller.
  • When we do drink something to quench our thirst, it is often times something other than water. Whether it is coffee, juice or soda, many of us consume a larger amount of calories by reaching for a beverage other than water.

Unfortunately, for many of us staying properly hydrated all day everyday can be a difficult task, so we turn to the expert advice of Miguel del Mazo, MD, MS, a bariatric surgeon at Gwinnett Medical Center’s Center for Weight Management. Below you can find some of his tips to stay both hydrated and slim.

  • Learn how much water you should actually be drinking: The amount of water you should be drinking varies person by person. The two big distinctions are gender and your size; men typically need to drink more water than women (125 ounces vs. 91 ounces) and heavier people need to drink more water than slimmer ones.
  • Actually drink water: Many of us have the perception that drinking fluids of any kind help us to stay hydrated when that is not necessarily the case. There is no substitute for water, so make sure you are drinking plain water throughout the day.
  • Incorporate foods that will help you stay hydrated: There are several water-laden foods such as apples, celery, cucumbers, plums and watermelon, to name just a few. Not only will these foods help keep you hydrated; they have an added nutrition bonus.
  • Hold yourself accountable for how much you’re drinking: Once you learn how much water you need throughout the day, invest in a reusable water bottle. This is a great way to accurately measure of how much you are really drinking. For some it is motivating to continue drinking water when they have a personal bottle of their own.
  • Drink water before, during and after meals: While hydration is important throughout the day no matter what, drinking water before you eat could help prevent over-eating. Also, staying hydrated throughout your meal is a great way to slow the eating process down. It takes about 20 minutes for our bodies to receive the “I’m full” signal from our brain, so if you eat too fast, you won’t notice the fullness. Once you finish your meal, try reaching for your water instead of dessert, you may not be as hungry as you think.

Drinking water is a great way to improve overall health as well as to promote a healthy weight. While many of us may struggle to maintain a healthy diet and a consistent exercise routine, making a small change, like drinking more water, is a step in the right direction. To help you continue on your weight management journey, the experts at the Center for Weight Management offer numerous services and resources to support your weight loss goals, both short term and long term. 

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