Popular woman’s magazine Cosmopolitan recently published findings of one Virginia Tech professor’s weight loss study.
Brenda Davy, an associate professor in the department of human nutrition, foods and exercise, found water consumption increases weight loss.
The research was conducted three years ago and published in February 2010. Cosmopolitan published the study in the February 2011 issue.
There were two groups of middle-aged to older adults who participated in the study. For 12 weeks, both groups were on a healthy, low-calorie weight loss diet. The diet allowed for 1,200 to 1,500 calories a day and was packed with fruits, vegetables and proteins.
The mean body mass index of every participant was in the obese range.
One group was required to drink one to two glasses of water 15 to 20 minutes before each main meal.
The group that consumed the water before each meal lost 15.5 pounds during the 12 week period. The other group lost 11 pounds.
“Both groups did very well,” Davy said.
Davy said many people do not drink enough water per day, sometimes only 1.5 cups a day. The recommended amount is nine to 13 cups per day.
As a safety note, it is also possible to consume too much water, which can lead to water toxicity.
Davy’s study was unique because water had never been researched in its role in facilitating weight loss.
The study affirmed a commonly held belief that consuming water before each meal will deter people from overeating and, if combined with the right diet, can enhance weight loss.
“It is sort of an urban legend when people talk about using water as a weight loss method,” Davy said.