Do you want to lose weight, feel more alert, and increase your exercise performance? If you do then I have some GREAT news for you.
There is a completely free, and easy solution to help you on you weight loss journey. It isn’t some new gimmick or pill. All you need is more water. Over 75% of America suffers from a condition called chronic dehydration. When we typically think of dehydration we visualize a wayward traveler lost in the desert without water for days. This is referred to as acute dehydration.
Chronic dehydration is harder to detect. It occurs when small amounts of water that is lost throughout the day is not replenished over a long period. Because the water loss is small it is typically very hard to detect and you have to rely on other symptoms to diagnose the problem. Among those symptoms are
increase in appetite, decreased in metabolism, increased irritability, and reduced physical performance.
Are you dehydrated?
ARE YOU DEHYDRATED?
Lets start with the signs. Look at you pee, LOOK AT IT! Good now compare the color of your urine to the following color scale.
The differences in color tell us how much water your kidney are using. Kidney work to filter waste in our body, they do this by combining waste with water and excreting it in the form of urine. Dark urine could indicate a higher solid concentration. When you are dehydrated your body wants to conserve water. It sends signals to the kidneys to restrict their water, use, which in turn leads to darker urine. (for more on nephrology check this out)
Suppose you don’t want to go the urinalysis route. You can always find other symptoms of dehydration. The first and most obvious is thirst. Thirst is your bodys' way of telling you that you need water ASAP. There is also your mood; if you are irritable, having headaches, or feeling foggy, you may need some sweet H2O. Another common symptom is constant snacking. If you find yourself snacking without ever feeling full, your body might be looking for water, not chips.
WATER FOR WEIGHT LOSS
How does something as simple as drinking water help you lose weight? Well here are some phenomenal ways water has got your back;
1) Water Improves your Metabolism:
A study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism discovered that drinking an extra 17 ounces (about 2 cups) of water a day increased metabolism by 30%. That means that if you take in 1500 calories a day, your body converts an extra 450 calories into energy rather than fat. For more on how metabolism works check out: (http://www.mayoclinic.org/metabolism/art-20046508)
2) Water can suppress your appetite:
Weight loss 101:
In order to lose weight you need to create a calorie deficit. *burn more calories than you take in
You can create a calorie deficit by:
Your digestive system is very good at extracting water from foods you eat. Remember earlier how one of the symptoms of dehydration is constant snacking? Therefore many people confuse thirst with hunger.
Try this simple trick: whenever you feel a snack craving coming on drink a tall glass of water before reaching for the snacks. Not only is water a calorie free substitute but it helps you feel fuller and often times it can suppress your appetite all together. (This really works! funny personal story)
Drink a tall glass of water before reaching for a snack.
3) Water Increases Your Exercise Performance:
There is a practice among bodybuilders to restrict water in order to look more shredded. However, bodybuilders use this water restriction for very short term results.
Under normal circumstances reduced water intake is extremely detrimental to your health. Water restriction can lead to joint/kidney damage, muscle cramps, and decreased physical performance. Need proof? Here are some videos of bodybuilders passing out from dehydration.
If you want to get the most out of your gym time you need to stay hydrated. Here are the basic guidelines for staying hydrated while exercising:
The issue fresh on everyone's mind is of course hyponatremia. This is what happens when you flush out the essential salts and minerals in your body by drinking too much water. What most people fail to realize is that hyponatremia is extremely difficult to achieve under normal circumstances. The average person would need to consume over 2 gallons of water in under 1hr to begin to experience the symptoms of hyponatremia. An extra 2 glasses of water a day is not going to be anywhere near the danger zone.
HOW MUCH WATER IS RECOMMENDED
The amount of water you as an individual should be drinking is dependent on a number of factors such as; diet, your level of activity, climate, and body type. Having said that the average person can calculate an estimate using the following formula
Weight in LBS x ½ = Total water intake in ounces.
for example I weigh 185 so my total water intake is 92.5 fluid ounces.
This number is not how many ounces you should be drinking but rather your recommended total water intake. Remember earlier it was mentioned that your digestive system can extract water from food. Therefore if you have a high intake of fruits and vegetables you are getting a good amount of water from your diet.
TIPS TO STAY HYDRATED
How to increase your water intake:
1 ) Take water with you: The easiest way to ensure you drink enough water is to always have some on hand. Buy a reusable bottle or just reuse the one you buy at a gas station.
2) Go half & half: this is actually something I learned from my fiance. Fill up a half a glass with water and fill the rest with juice. This is a great way to cut down calories and also make your juices last much longer.
3) Make it routine: our self control is a limited resource. Make drinking water an autonomous process. My technique is taking a drink before and after I use the bathroom. I do this without even noticing. Try it with your own routines, take a sip of water every time you pass the water cooler, or before and after every meal.
More Water Less Problems