Many fat loss methods are nothing more than snake oil, so you have to keep your wits about you. While there are many benefits to drinking water, fat loss is not directly related to doing so.
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Drinking water won't directly burn calories, but drinking it as an alternative to sugary drinks can help cut excess calories out of your diet.
Zero Calories in Water
Proper hydration is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. There are no calories in water, and it's generally devoid of nutrients unless you're drinking mineral water. When you're trying to lose weight, your goal is to burn more calories than you consume. This is known as a negative energy balance.
When you drink water, fat loss isn't necessarily easier. However, drinking mineral water can help curb your hunger and even improve digestive health. This beverage fills you up and keeps your digestive system running smoothly. Consider trading your regular water for mineral water if your goal is to burn more calories.
One way to burn more energy than you take in is to eat fewer calories. One potential source of excess calories is soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages. A 12-ounce can of Coca-Cola, for example, contains 140 calories. By replacing soda with water, fat loss becomes easier because you cut back on empty calories.
Health and Water Consumption
In February 2016, a study featured in Nutritional Epidemiology has found a link between water consumption and decreased daily calorie intake. While the researchers stated that drinking water wasn't associated with eating a high-quality diet, they noted that drinking water reduced the consumption of sugary beverages.
A June 2016 study published in Frontiers in Nutrition suggests that drinking enough water helps prevent obesity and type II diabetes. Scientists state that human studies are consistent with the results from the animal studies conducted so far, and across the board, dehydration seems to increase the risk of developing diabetes and obesity.
Preventing dehydration is one of the most important health benefits of drinking water. Even if this beverage doesn't burn calories, it has other benefits, such as regulation of body temperature. It helps lubricate and cushion your joints, which may help with joint pain. Water also helps you digest food and eliminate waste.
Drinking water is important, but if weight loss is your goal, then you'll have to use other methods. Lowering your calorie intake is only half the battle. Eating whole foods like fresh vegetables, fruit and meat can help you eat less. Eating processed foods tends to cause weight gain from excess calorie intake.
In February 2017, a study published in Population Health Metrics showed that decreasing one's intake of ultra-processed foods led to less sugar in the diet. Taking sugar out of your diet removes excess calories and makes room for more nutritious foods.
Read more: Nutritional Value of Water
Ways to Lose Weight
While diet is at least half of the weight loss equation, exercise is still important. Exercise burns calories, leading to a negative energy balance. An October 2017 study featured in Obesity has found that exercising and dieting resulted in greater fat loss than diet alone. Additionally, lifting weights while on a diet helps preserve lean mass. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is also a great way to increase your heart rate and burn calories.
Capsaicin and other spices are known to increase energy expenditure. But, if you're specifically looking for a beverage that can help you burn more calories, consider your morning cup of joe.
Caffeine, which is found in coffee and dark chocolate, can help you torch more calories than drinking plain water. This compound accelerates your metabolism, helping you burn more calories at rest. It may also suppress hunger.
Drinking coffee doesn't need to be unhealthy, either. You may use artificial sweeteners like stevia for extra flavor. Add nonfat skim milk instead of half-and-half or another creamer to subdue its strong flavor and cut calories.
- Journal of Basic Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology: "The Effect of Caffeine on Energy Balance"
- Obesity: "Effect of Exercise Type During Intentional Weight Loss on Body Composition in Older Adults With Obesity"
- Population Health Metrics: "The Share of Ultra-Processed Foods and the Overall Nutritional Quality of Diets in the US: Evidence From a Nationally Representative Cross-Sectional Study"
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Water & Nutrition"
- Frontiers in Nutrition: "Increased Hydration Can Be Associated With Weight Loss"
- Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics: "Plain Water Consumption in Relation to Energy Intake and Diet Quality Among US Adults, 2005–2012"
- Coca-Cola: "Coca-Cola, Original - 12 Fl Oz"
- National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: "Balance Food and Activity"
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Get the Facts: Drinking Water and Intake"
- Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition: "Capsaicin and Capsiate Could Be Appropriate Agents for Treatment of Obesity: A Meta-Analysis of Human Studies"