Sep 03, 2015 08:59 PM EDT
Losing weight has vital importance for many overweight people, who are not only facing image issues and lack in self-esteem but also many related health risks.
In their quest for the "magic slimming pill", people are eager to try anything and even to spend a large amount of money. This is why the weight loss industry is booming. However, it seems that they are some very simple ways of losing weight without struggling so much, with no uncomfortable and starving diet regimens, no sweating from countless reps in the gym, no time-consuming and not making a hole in your bank account.
Those who are trying to lose weight have probably already replaced sugary with just plain water in order to cut on calories intake. However, what they may not be aware of is that a very simple yet efficient method of losing weight is also entirely based on water. It consists in the recommendation to drink water before meals. This could make sense from the start since the water occupying space in your tummy will force you to eat smaller portions. However, it's benefits are not stopping here.
Researchers at the University of Birmingham in the U.K. found that on an average, people who use to consume water 30 minutes before their three meals lost 5 to 9 pounds over the course of about three months.
Researchers invited 84 people participants in their study, 30 men and 54 women The researchers don't specify the age range for the people taking part in their study in their paper, however they provide the information that their average age was 56 years.
Half the participants were asked to drink 30 minutes before at least one meal a day 16 ounces (roughly two glasses) of plain, noncarbonated water. Some participants just drank water before one or two meals, while some others ended up drinking water before all of their three meals a day.
The other half of the participants did not consume any water before their meals but were asked instead to visualize being full before and during their meals in order to cut down the quantity of food consumed.
The researchers periodically surveyed the participants and monitored their urine in order to figure out if they were sticking with the plan and evaluate how much water they were actually consuming.
The research team found out that overall, both groups of study participants lost over the curse of the study 2 to 9 pounds. Scientists can't determine for sure why this happened, but several other previous studies have found that simply being studied can have a pronounced effect on behavior.
The most interesting finding was that people in the water-drinking group lost about 2.7 pounds more than the other group. Previous studies have found already that there are various factors that can contribute to weight loss, from a change in mood or diet to an increase in exercise.
Over the course of the latest study, the researchers tracked some of these factors including how many calories they consumed at each meal and participants' physical activity. The two groups had no notable differences in how much they exercised.
According to the research team, what likely contributed to the weight loss wasn't a change in the content of the participants' meals or exercise. The researchers believe that the greater weight loss of the group that drank water before meals could be explained in part by filling up their stomachs and making them feel fuller and less hungry. However, there are also other reasons as well. For instance, when people are dehydrated their body will often tell them that they are hungry.
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