Water, the main chemical component of the body, makes up about 60% of the body mass and up to 75% of the brain. As a result, not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration, which in turn adversely affects the way the body functions. Severe dehydration can be fatal. That’s why while humans can survive for days or even weeks without food, most will only last a few days without water.
Here’s a quick look at the health benefits of water and how drinking enough water can help in weight loss.
Importance of Water in the Body
Every cell and tissue in the body depends on water for oxygen and nutrients. Water also helps dissolve minerals and other nutrients to make them more accessible to various parts of the body. Its other functions in the body include:
- Regulating and maintaining body temperature through perspiration.
- Moistening tissues such as those of the eyes, ears, nose and throat.
- Lowering the burden on the kidneys and liver by flushing out toxins and other waste products.
- Protecting body organs and tissues.
- Serving as a medium for various biochemical reactions that occur in the body
- Lubricating joints.
- Helping to prevent constipation.
Mild Dehydration Bad for Health
It only takes very mild dehydration for the body to feel its ill effects. Without enough water, the body will not be able to carry out the above functions normally. It becomes drained and tired easily.
Those who don’t drink enough will have chronic mild dehydration over time. This has been linked to higher risk of kidney stones, urinary tract infections and bladder cancer. A regularly dehydrated body also thickens the blood, increasing the risk of heart attacks.
Drinking Water Helps in Weight Loss
Drinking more water is good for dieters because it slows down the rate of emptying of the stomach, helps the stomach feel fuller longer and minimizes strong food cravings. Water should be drunk before a main meal. A great water-based concoction is hot water and lemon juice in the morning. This increases metabolic rates and help burn calories too.
Additionally, eating foods with high water content helps dieters too. Again, the credit goes to the increase of the fullness factor. For instance, a soup – a mixture of water and vegetables – provides greater satiety than vegetables alone with a glass of water. When satiety increases, dieters tend to eat less.
The weight loss benefits of water are also due to the fact that foods mixed with water appear larger. This gives the impression that these foods will be more filling. Also, when there is water in food, the water will be bound to the food, delaying absorption and staying longer in the stomach.
There are many health benefits of water. Water performs various crucial body functions by carrying nutrients and oxygen to all parts of the body. A well hydrated body is also less likely to develop certain diseases. And lastly, drinking enough water and eating food mixed with water can help dieters reach their weight loss targets faster.