Study: There’s a New Reason to Drink More Water (And This One Might Actually Motivate You to Do It)
Anyone struggling with weight management or trying to cut back on sodium, fat and sugar may find drinking more water may help.
A study involving 18,300 adults in the U.S. assessed the dietary effects of increasing water consumption. It found that when people drank one, two or three more cups per day, their food intake decreased by 68 to 205 calories. In addition, they consumed 78 to 235 milligrams less sodium, 7 to 21 milligrams less cholesterol and 5 to nearly 18 grams less sugar per day.
Even a 1 percent increase in water consumption produced small but measurable positive effects. It led to eating 8.6 fewer calories along with slight reductions in ingesting sugary beverages and low-nutrition foods. The tiny boost in water also led to a slight lowering of sodium, fat, cholesterol and sugar intake.
“The impact of plain water intake on diet was similar across race/ethnicity, education and income levels and body weight status,” said Ruopeng An, a kinesiology and community health professor at the University of Illinois. “This finding indicates that it might be sufficient to design and deliver universal nutrition interventions and education campaigns that promote plain water consumption in replacement of beverages with calories in diverse population subgroups without profound concerns about message and strategy customization.” The study was published in the Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics.
Other Health Benefits of Drinking Enough Water
As approximately 60 percent of the body is comprised of water, it isn’t surprising that an array of health benefits is associated with drinking optimal amounts. Water is needed by all the cells to operate properly, and it has multiple functions such as temperature regulation, joint lubrication and assistance in food transit through the intestines. Dehydration can cause serious problems, but mild dehydration of between 1 to 3 percent can also have negative consequences. Drinking the recommended eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day results in the following benefits:
- Enhanced Cognitive Function. Research published in the Journal of Nutrition found that 1.6 percent dehydration in women following exercise resulted in a decrease in mood and impairment in concentration. A study appearing in the International Journal of Psychophysiology observed that older adults with low hydration had poorer memory and attention compared to those with adequate hydration.
- Decreased Severity of Headaches. An investigation in the European Journal of Neurology discovered increasing water intake reduced the duration and intensity of headaches in 18 patients who frequently suffered from the malady. Research in the journal Headache concluded that dehydration could provoke migraines.
- Facilitation of Bowel Evacuation. A study in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition associated low water intake with increased constipation.
- Prevention of Kidney Stones. Harvard Medical School recommends drinking plenty of water to dilute the material in urine that causes kidney stones.
Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance wellness. She is the creator of a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects. You can visit her site and learn more at http://www.alternativemedicinetruth.com. Ms. West is also the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies.