It’s a well-known fact that we all gain weight as we age. One reason is that aging muscles actually increase the amount of fat we store in our bodies. Worn out muscle cells are not as readily replaced, but wither and become weak. The cells that were the powerhouse of the body when we were younger, can no longer function effectively, and we slow down. Conse-quently, if we keep our caloric intake exactly the same as we age, those unburned calories will end up as fat. Keeping active and building regular exercise into our lives will help a lot, as this revs up our metabolism for several hours. That’s why exercising – even a 10-15 minute brisk walk – right after a meal is a good strategy for weight control.
However, new research has shown that the simple habit of drinking two cups of water shortly before each meal, results in considerable weigh loss, even if calorie intake remains the same and the person does not exercise! Dr. Brenda Davy of Virginia Tech, conducted the first randomised controlled trial to study the relationship between water consumption and weight loss. The amazing results appeared in the February 2010 issue of Obesity. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19661958
The trial involving 48 inactive Americans, aged 55 to 75, ran for 12 weeks. Prior to this, all the participants had been consuming 1,800 to 22,000 calories a day. They were then divided into two groups. The men’s ration was slashed to 1,500 and the women’s ration to 1,200 a day. One group was asked to drink a half a liter of water just before all three daily meals; the other group were not told what to drink. After three months, the group that drank water before their meals had lost about 15 1/2 pounds each; the other group lost only 11 pounds. Moreover this habit appears to be easy to keep up. One year after the trial finished, the group that drank all the water before meals were still at it, and had lost another 1.5 pounds each while the rest had gained it all back.