Water is critical for weight-loss and an essential part of your Lifestyle Plan. I recommend that you drink 6 to 8 glasses of water every day – that’s approximately 1½ to 2 litres. If plain water is just too plain for you, try adding a slice of fresh lemon or lime or orange to zip it up.

But do you know why we should drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day? Here are some fascinating facts to explain why – they may surprise you:

  1. Water suppresses the appetite naturally and helps the body metabolise stored fat.

Studies have shown that a decrease in water intake causes fat deposits to increase, while an increase in water intake can actually reduce fat deposits. The kidneys can’t function properly without enough water. When they don’t work to capacity, some of their load is dumped on to the liver. One of the liver’s primary functions is to metabolise stored fat into useable energy for the body. But, if the liver has to do some of the kidney’s work, it can’t operate at full throttle. As a result it metabolises less fat so more fat remains stored in the body and weight loss slows down.

  1. Drinking water is the best treatment for fluid retention

When the body gets less water, it sees this as a threat to survival and begins to hold on to every drop. Water is stored outside the cells. This shows up as swollen feet, legs and hands. Diuretics only offer a temporary solution. They force out stored water along with some essential nutrients. Again, the body sees this as a threat and will replace the lost water at the first opportunity. So the condition returns quickly.

The best way to overcome the problem of water retention is to give the body what it needs – plenty of water. This way stored water in the body will be released. If you have a constant problem with water retention, excess salt may be to blame. We should be eating no more than 6g of salt per day. Your body will tolerate salt or sodium only in certain concentration. The more salt you eat, the more water your system requires to dilute it. But getting rid of unneeded salt is easy – just drink more water. As it’s forced through the kidneys, it takes away excess sodium.

  1. Water helps rid the body of waste

When you are losing weight, the body has a lot more toxins and waste to get rid of – after all, all that metabolised fat has to go somewhere! Drinking plenty of water will help to flush out that waste.

  1. Water can help relieve constipation

Water keeps the food you eat moving along through your intestines and keeps your intestines smooth and flexible too. When the body doesn’t get enough water, it draws the water it needs from the colon (large intestine) The result? Constipation. But when a person drinks enough water, the colon is fully hydrated and normal bowel functions usually return.

How much water is enough?

On average, a person should drink eight 227g/8oz glasses of water per day. However, if you are overweight, you need one additional glass for every 25 pounds of excess weight. The amount you drink also should be increased if you exercise briskly or if the weather is hot and dry.

Water should preferably be cold because cold water is absorbed into the system more quickly than warm water. And some evidence suggests that drinking cold water can help burn calories!

BEWARE!
If you stop drinking enough water, your body fluids will be thrown out of balance again and you may experience fluid retention, unexplained weight gain and loss of thirst, plus other potential problems associated with dehydration such as headaches, lethargy, lack of concentration, constipation and kidney problems.

So, get into the habit of drinking your water every day. One easy way to keep check of how much you are drinking is to fill four 500ml bottles with water and keep them with you throughout the day.

Drinking water is the NUMBER 1 weight loss tip from lots of Slimtone members. Erin, David, Rachel, Hayley and Natasha are among them – see what they have to say.

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