Water is a crucial factor in weight loss. Drinking water keeps the body hydrated during exercise and also increases metabolism without the extra calories, sugars and additives of other drinks like sodas.
How Water Increases Metabolism
The liver metabolizes fat in the body when it converts stored fat to energy. Another of the functions of the liver is to pick up the slack for the kidneys, which need plenty of water to work properly. If the kidneys are water-deprived, the liver has to do their work along with the work of its own, which lowers its total productivity. This causes it to not be able to metabolize fat as quickly or efficiently as it could if the kidneys were able to work at their maximum with sufficient water.
Without drinking the proper amounts of water, the liver is being overworked and the body is storing more fat. There is evidence that shows that cold water or ice water enhances this fat burning.
During exercise, the body must stay hydrated. Also, initial weight loss is due primarily to loss of water weight. Adequate amounts of water need to be consumed in order to replace this water and prevent dehydration, which could have a negative effect on weight loss goals. Dehydration causes a reduction in the blood volume, which carries oxygen to the muscles. A reduction in the oxygen supply to the muscles will leave the body feeling tired and not able to perform properly and efficiently. In addition, burning calories through exercise releases toxins into the body, and drinking water helps to flush these out.
Water and Muscles
Water hydrates the muscles and helps to improve muscle tone. Without water, no amount of exercise and weight lifting will create a difference in the appearance of the muscles from the outside. Also, muscles with sufficient water are able to contract more easily which, in turn, makes the workouts more effective. Proper hydration can help reduce muscle and joint soreness after exercising.
Studies have shown that drinking water before and during a meal helps to decrease the amount of food consumed during the meal. Water works to give you a feeling of satiety and fullness. Also, if deprived of water, the body may feel as though it is hungry when it is actually just thirsty. Try drinking a full glass of water before a meal and take sips of water after bites during the meal.
How Much Water?
At least eight 8 ounce glasses of water should be consumed each and every day. Some researchers say that overweight individuals should drink an additional 8 ounces for every 25 of excess weight. Also, more water should be drank if you live in a hot climate or exercise intensely.
It is unhealthy to drink vast amounts of water at one sitting. Instead, the eight glasses should be spread out evenly throughout the day. Feeling thirsty is a sign of dehydration, and your body should not be allowed to get to that point. If water does not taste great to you, try a flavored water, adding lemon or lime, or adding mixes such as Crystal Light.