Mar 15, 2014 07:41 AM EDT
Drink Water to Quench Thirst, Not to Burn Calories or Lose Weight, Nutrition Expert Says
Dr Beth Kitchin, a nutrition expert at the University of Alabama has debunked myths related to drinking water, weight loss and calories.
Dieters are often advised to drink a lot of water to help shed weight. But Kitchin said that it is just a myth that drinking water aids slimming.
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"There is very little evidence that drinking water promotes weight loss - it is one of those self-perpetuating myths. I'm not saying drinking water isn't good - but only one study showed people who drank more water burned a few extra calories, and it was only a couple of extra calories a day," Kitchin, Ph.D., R.D., assistant professor of nutrition sciences, said in astatement.
There is also another myth that says people must drink eight glasses of water a day.
Kitchin said that it is important that the body gets sufficient amount of fluids every day. But it does not necessarily have to be only from water. As of now, there is no evidence proving water's role in dissolving fat.
Although water is the best liquid to drink; green tea, coffee, diet soda, juices and squash are also hydrating.
"People think coffee doesn't count, but actually it does. When you drink coffee, your body is retaining much of that fluid - especially for people who are habituated to drinking caffeine, as the body adapts, resulting in a reduced loss of fluids,"
Drinking cold water helps lose weight is another common myth. Kitchin believes that water might help burn extra calories but it does not have sufficient impact to assist weight loss.
The only way to lose weight is to consume lesser calories. Kitchin recommends eating fruits, vegetables and soups. Enrolling in long-running weight management programs like EatRight by UAB or Volumetrics can also help.
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Kitchin's claims contradict the conclusion of previous studies that found drinking two cups of water 20 to 30 minutes before every meal helps people lose weight quickly. The researchers said that drinking water reduces hunger, making dieters consume an average of 75 fewer calories in one meal, CNN reports.