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Everybody wants the secret to weight-loss, the magic pill, the answer to burn fat as we would exerting energy on the treadmill but just, you know, minus the treadmill.

It’s not the ‘look no further’ I have your answer, but it’s an effective and easy simple daily habit, drumroll please … drink more water before you eat. 

The University of Birmingham conducted a study to measure the effects of drinking water before meals among obese adults. 

Over a 12-week period, they measured participants drinking 500 ml of water either:

  • before no meals
  • before one meal
  • before all meals

What they found was that by the end of the 12 weeks, participants who drank water before all three meals of the day lost an average of 4.3kg (9.48lbs), those who only drank water before one meal or no meals lost an average of 0.8kg (1.76 lbs). 

The findings of this study are profound because it suggests that simply drinking a couple glasses of water before meals may help with weight management and weight loss, especially when combined with appropriate eating and exercise habits. 

The combination is key because in order to lose weight you have to be in a calorie deficit, you either have to eat less then you need, or you have to burn more calories than you consume. 

If your goal is to lose weight you must be in a calorie deficit, which can be achieved either by consuming less calories than you need or burning off more calories than you consume. Resistance training is the form of exercise that will help you to burn off the most amount of calories over the long-term. Cardiovascular training may burn off more calories during exercise, but resistance training speeds up your metabolism (link to metabolism article here), which means you will burn off more calories at rest. 

If you just want the simple way to shed a bit of body fat, drinking a couple more glasses of water before meals will do more good for you then you’d expect.