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Dieting?† Don't Forget To Drink!

With more than 50% of adult Americans significantly overweight, dieting-and giving diet advice-is big business!† The biggest dieting "secret", however, is free, easy, readily available, and can make a huge difference in your weight management success, whether you're trying to lose weight or maintain a certain weight:† drinking enough water.† For starters, water has no calories!† In addition, drinking water is a great appetite suppressant and drinking enough water (8 to 10 glasses per day) will make you feel "full".† Ironically, in slightly more than a third of adult Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.† As a result, we often have the urge to snack, when drinking a glass of water would satisfy that sensation.† A University of Washington study found that drinking only one glass of water shut down midnight hunger pangs for nearly all of the dieters studied.†

Not drinking enough water can sabotage your dieting efforts in another way.† Even MILD dehydration will slow down one's metabolism as much as 3%.† How common a problem is this?† Estimates are that seventy-five percent of Americans have mild, chronic dehydration.

Lack of water is also a common cause of daytime fatigue.† And what do many of us do when we feel fatigued but don't have the opportunity to nap?† We munch, rationalizing that the food will give us an energy boost, another major dieting pitfall.†

When dieting, most people focus on what they're eating and overlook what they're drinking. . .and how much.† Not only is drinking enough water critically important, but drinking water instead of other high calorie beverages is another successful dieting strategy.† Drinking water is also far healthier than drinking other non-caloric beverages such as diet sodas.† Not only do many diet drinks contain caffeine and excessive sodium, but their sugar substitutes can still stimulate appetite and cravings, creating another diet pitfall.†

Created: 10/16/2003  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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