So what is this magical elixir?
According to the results of a new clinical trial unveiled at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the answer is… water. Just two 8-ounce glasses of the stuff, taken before meals, enables people to shed pounds say researchers.
Brenda Davy Ph.D., senior author of the study said, “We are presenting results of the first randomized controlled intervention trial demonstrating that increased water consumption is an effective weight loss strategy. Over the course of 12 weeks, dieters who drank water before meals, three times per day, lost about 5 pounds more than dieters who did not increase their water intake.”
Although folklore and everyday experience have long suggested that water can help promote weight loss, there has been surprisingly little scientific information on the topic. Previous studies have hinted that drinking water before meals reduces intake of calories, but until now, there has been no “gold-standard” evidence.
This randomized, controlled trial included 48 adults aged 55-75 years and compared weight loss among dieters who drink water before meals with those who do not.
One group drank 2 cups of water prior to their meals and the other did not. All of the subjects ate a low-calorie diet during the study. Over the course of 12 weeks, water drinkers lost about 15.5 pounds, while the non-water drinkers lost about 11 pounds.
Exciting stuff. But, before you go draining the faucet in an attempt to shed even more pounds, SRxA’s Word on Health cautions its readers about a rare, but potentially fatal condition known as water intoxication. So how much water should you drink? The Institute of Medicine says that most healthy people can simply let thirst be their guide. It does not specify exact requirements for water, but sets general recommendations for women at about 9 cups of fluids a day, and men at about 13 cups of fluids.