Stay Hydrated to Lose Weight and Keep It Off

Summer may be drawing to a close, but it’s not going down without a fight. Across much of the United States, temperatures have been in the triple digits for the better part of August. When the mercury rises into the 90s and above, drinking plenty of water becomes especially important to keep the body hydrated and avoid overheating. But, drinking water can also help you lose weight, an added benefit for pre- and post-op bariatric patients.

Drink water to keep weight offSeveral studies indicate that people who drink more water consume fewer calories. And, of course, substituting water for soda or having a glass of water instead of a snack is a quick fix to trim your waistline. Fortunately, increasing your water intake is one of the easiest lifestyle changes you can make. After all, you’re not giving up anything, water is available everywhere, and drinking several glasses a day requires very little will power.

So, just how much water do you need?

Water, Water Everywhere
For years, fitness magazines and the news media set the bar at eight glasses of water a day, which comes to 64 ounces. The truth is that the amount of water you need depends on your weight, how much you exercise, and your diet. A simple rule of thumb is to divide your current weight by two, and drink that many ounces of water a day. So, if you weigh 200 pounds, you should consume 100 ounces of water.

You should note, however, that about 20 percent of your water intake comes from the foods you eat, especially when you include lots of healthy fruits and vegetables in your diet. With that in mind, based on the above example, you can reduce the amount of water you should drink to 80 ounces, or 10 glasses. (If you are breastfeeding, add an extra glass to your daily routine.) Of course, don’t drink all your water at once. Your water intake should be spaced out throughout the day – morning, afternoon and evening. Drinking too much in one sitting can cause cramping and tax your kidneys.

water-glasses-on-tableDoes It Have to be H2O?
So, what about your morning cup of coffee? It’s made with water–does it count toward your daily intake? The answer is no. Coffee, iced tea, caffeinated sodas, and alcohol all act as diuretics, not only causing your body to excrete water, but actually making your body need more water to compensate for the loss.

This doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy these drinks, but be mindful of them and drink in moderation. If you have a glass of wine at a party, for example, drink a full glass of water, as well. Not only is it good for your body, it can eliminate the nasty hangover and feeling of tiredness.

Physical activity can also dehydrate you quickly and without warning. To avoid dehydration, drink plenty of water in advance of a workout or team sport, especially if you won’t be able to stop in the middle of a game or activity. Whenever you hear of an athlete collapsing on the field of heat exhaustion, more often than not, it is from not drinking enough fluids. If the tough sports guys can do it, so can you.

WLS Water Rules
If you have had weight loss surgery, you should not drink water (or any other beverage) during your meals, or 30 minutes before or after a meal. Having a beverage while you eat can make you prone to consume more food than you need, and can make it difficult to determine when you feel full. Also, you need to keep the nutrients in your body and drinking water or another beverage at mealtime will evacuate them before the vitamins can soak in.

Finally, as with any healthy habit, more is not necessarily better. There is such a thing as drinking too much water, so be mindful of water intake and how much you expel in the process. If you get concerned or plan to make a dramatic change in your water consumption, consult your doctor or a health professional. Overall, however, if you want to lose weight, stay hydrated, and keep your organs running smoothly, then pour yourself a tall glass of cool, clear water, and drink up!

Be Sociable, Share!

Tags: , , , , , ,

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply