If you are trying to shed the pounds, the best question to ask yourself right away is how much water should I drink to lose weight? The short answer is that everyone should drink the equivalent of eight 8 ounce glasses daily to stay healthy. which can be a combination of water and water rich food.
If you want to lose weight, the experts suggest drinking even more water. That number can vary based on a number of factors including activity level and weight. Read more to find out just how much water you should to drink to lose weight as the facts will surprise you!
Did you know that 80% of adults under the age of 36 in the USA reported wanting to eat healthier and drinking more water? (1) The statistics continue to sky rocket when looking at the weight loss industry which indicates a clear trend towards unhealthy lifestyles. Shedding the pounds is not easy because working out and eating right can be hard at times, especially for women postpartum.
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Does water really help to lose weight?
Water is very important for your weight loss strategy, as it helps speed up fat burning which does wonders when combined with activity and healthy eating. Water is calorie free, yet takes calories for your body to metabolize. To be exact, 0.5 liter of cold water takes about 23 calories to metabolize. This might not seem like a lot but if you add it up, that is an extra 17,000 calories you will have burnt in a 12-month span, just by drinking water alone!
This is not the only benefits of drinking water, water is a free and healthy beverage that will surprise you in more ways than you might have thought possible!
Drinking water helps weight loss by:
- Increasing your metabolic rate.
- Suppressing your appetite.
- Clear your body of toxins that inhibit weight loss.
- Encourages more healthy habits .
Stay tuned as we go over the formula to calculate how much water you need daily. (don’t worry the math is super easy!)
1. Drinking Water Increases Your Metabolic Rate.
Metabolic rate defines how quickly your body translates calories into energy. The faster this happens the higher your rate is and overall calories you burn during any type if activity.
Water is shown to increase you metabolic rate shortly after drinking it. Studies found that after drinking 17 oz of water, subject’s metabolic rate increased by 30%, starting within 10 minutes of drinking the water and continued increasing for the next 30-45minutes before tapering down.
This is a good reason to drink often throughout the day rather than a lot sporadically
2. It Acts as an Appetite Suppressant.
Water can suppress your appetite by filling (quite literally) your stomach, signaling to your brain that your full. In fact sometimes we can confuse dehydration with feelings of hunger, so it’s always good to drink first if you are feeling hungry outside of normal meal times.
Drinking water right before meal time can really help with weight loss. Studies show that drinking 2 8oz glasses before a meal results in 22% less eating at the table. Water clears your body of toxins
3. Water Clears Your Body of Toxins.
Toxins is a term that loosely defines a group of elements that are harmful to the body. They appear both in our environment and as ingredients in our food. We will always ingest some form of toxins despite our best efforts, luckily our liver, kidney and lungs are able to naturally detox our body. However, they won’t be able to do their job properly if you don’t hydrate properly.
Toxins can affect weight loss as it messes with our ability to balance blood sugar and metabolize cholesterol. This imbalance will make it harder for your body to properly get rid of fat cells.
Unfortunately we eat a lot more toxin filled world now which overloads our system. Staying hydrated by drinking a lot of water will make flushing these toxins out easier.
4. Drinking Water Encourages More Healthy Habits.
Now to the last point: healthy habits encourage more healthy habits. If you feel tiered or overwhelmed by the thought of getting on that exercise bicycle, then start with a small step. Start drinking your recommended amount of water daily.
This will give you a kick start that might have you choose a side of salad instead of fries at your next dinner, or maybe skip that sugary drink from the vending machine at work.
Maybe, but just maybe… you might take some time for other self care activities. If you are not sure where you start, you can read this guide on 7 FREE self care ideas for moms.
When Are the Best Times to Drink Water?
Don’t overthink this step, overall if you drink 8 glasses spread out throughout the day you will be just fine, however if you want to be more strategic about your water intake to help your body be its best self, follow these guidelines:
- 8oz in the morning upon waking as your body has gone many hours without hydration.
- 8oz 30min before a meal
- Don’t drink too much during meals as it can dilute your digestive enzymes which makes it harder for body to absorb nutrients needed for good health.
- 8oz or more before bedtime to help your body stay hydrated overnight.
- 8oz before working out as it will help your body sweat out toxins.
- Spread out the remaining of the water evenly.
Calculate How Much Water You Should Drink.
As mentioned earlier, 8×8 rule is a good general thumb. However, we are all different and therefore have different needs. Our body mass, activity and goals all factor into the right amount of water needed to properly care for our bodies.
Follow this easy calculation to figure out how much water you need:
- Divide your weight (lbs) by two. That is the amount of ounces you should drink daily.
- If you work out add 12oz of water per every 30minutes of activity
- If you want to lose weight, add 50oz to your basic water needs.
Tips for Staying More Hydrated.
If you have come as far to find this article and read it in its entirety, you have already taken a step towards drinking more water. If you are anything like me you probably already have a glass of water next to you as you tell yourself that this is the turning point where you will turn those bad habits on their head. (Mine is diet coke).
But the reality is that changing habits long term is harder, so I want to share a few tips to keep you going when regular tap water just won’t do it for you.
- Add flavor to the water (sliced cucumber or oranges give a ton of flavor).
- Bring a water bottle around with you as sometimes the convenience of it being there helps.
- Push yourself the first few weeks, then it will become more natural.
- Eat foods with high water content, like watermelon, cucumber tomatoes (..and more).
- Stop buying sugary drinks so there are not available (this might not be possible if others in your home are not on board).
Water Really Makes a Difference in Weight Loss
When I was pregnant I drank a lot of water and recalled it being a saving grace amidst all the nausea and lethargy. Carrying a baby for 9 months is exhausting! But when our baby was born, that healthy water intake quickly got replaced with coffee when a new type of exhaustion kicked in and I noticed my milk supply was still going strong nevertheless.
I was living off caffeine and sugar longer than I am willing to admit, and I am guessing maybe you did to. I got to a point though where my postpartum weight was affected by these new unhealthy habits. Something needed to change and drinking more water was the next step in that right direction.
This small habit really influenced my propensity for indulging in high sugar foods and drinks which ultimately helped me towards my weight loss goals.
So if you are asking yourself: “how much water should I drink to lose weight” you now have the answer and some more. You might not get to the gym today or have that salad in the fridge, but drinking extra water can be easy to incorporate into our lives and if you persist, other healthy habits which contribute to weight loss will naturally unfold in your life.
Want more encouragement to stay healthy? Check out these 11 workout subscription boxes from Crate Joy. (Many come with a nice water bottle so you can continue staying hydrated!)
How much water daily are you drinking?
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