You can feel the heat. In many areas temperatures are surpassing the 90s, making it all the more important to always have your water bottle in tow. You need H2O to function—after all, it makes up 40 to 70 percent of our bodies. But water can help with weight loss too—the key to a happy, healthy summer starts with water.
Drinking water can curb cravings. Cravings for salty foods may be a sign of dehydration. Salt is present in electrolytes, which maintain fluids in your body. When you don’t drink enough water, you may crave salty foods because your body is seeking balance. Next time you have an unexpected craving for potato chips or French fries, think about the last time you replenished with H2O. If it’s been a while, have a glass of water, then assess if you’re still craving those fries.
Drink water before and during meals. Water may help you feel fuller faster. One study found drinking two glasses of water before meals can help you shed pounds. Researchers found those who drank 16 ounces of water before each meal lost 15.5 pounds after three months, while those who didn’t lost only 11 pounds. If you continue to sip while you eat, you will also slow down, allowing your brain to recognize when you’re full.
Always have water handy. Whether you’re at work, running errands, or taking the kids to soccer practice, keep a water bottle handy at all times. You can purchase a reusable water bottle for as little as $10 as most grocery and convenience stores, and keeping it attached to your hip will remind you to sip. Staying hydrated should be a priority, especially in hot and humid temperatures. When we don’t get enough fluids, the cells of our body, even our skin cells, start to dehydrate and begin to pull water out from our bloodstream. As a result, our blood thickens and our body systems, including our brain and heart, which depend heavily on these fluids, can no longer function efficiently. That’s why you feel sluggish and have trouble thinking clearly when you’re dehydrated.
It’s the cheapest drink available. Americans spend up to $73.9 billion annually on sugary soft drinks, according to Kaiser. Water, for the most part, is free. Ditch the soda, and put that money toward a summer getaway. Your body will thank you. Studies show soda, even diet soda, can contribute to weight gain and other diseases like heart disease and stroke. Summer is the perfect time to treat your mind and your body.
Water doesn’t always take liquid form. You don’t always have to rush to the water fountain to stay hydrated. You can rush to grocery store too! Summer’s sweetest fruits, like strawberries and watermelon, are made up of more than 90 percent water. You will almost feel like you’re cheating on your weight loss plan because these fruits taste like desserts. Just don’t overdo it. Remember, even healthy foods have calories.