Store Is Closed
- Title: Drinking Water Proven to Help Weight Loss
- Website: Discovery News
- Publication Date: Mon Aug 23, 2010 01:00 PM ET
- Author: Sohn, Emily
Drinking two cups of water before all three meals helped dieters lose weight and keep it off, according to Brenda Davy, a nutrition researcher at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg.
However, the study focused on older adults, between the ages of 55-75. Whereas experiments on younger adults failed to find the same effect.
The study included 48 overweight or obese men and women between the ages of 55 and 75 who were on a low-calorie diet (1,200 calories per day for women and 1,500 calories per day for men). Half of the people were instructed to drink 16 ounces of water — the amount in a small bottle of spring water — before meals.
After three months, the participants who drank water had lost an average of about 15.5 pounds, compared with just 11 pounds in the control group, according to the study, the first results of which were published in 2010 in the journal Obesity.
Davy’s experiments have failed to find the same effect in younger adults, possibly because the gastrointestinal tract empties more slowly as we age, so water might lead to a longer-lasting feeling of fullness in older people.
But water might still work as a diet aid for younger people — just in different ways. One year-long study, for example, found that younger dieters who reported drinking more than a liter of water a day lost a little more weight than dieters who drank less water.
According to Barry Popkin, director of the Interdisciplinary Obesity Program at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Davy’s findings need to be repeated, before doctors can confidently tell dieters that downing water will boost their efforts. But it can’t hurt to keep a water bottle nearby, especially if that helps you take in less soda, juice, energy drinks and other caloric beverages.