It’s an amazing fact that the human body is composed of about 75% water. While this is true at birth, this percentage changes as we age. Recent studies show that by the time we reach 40, the amount of water in our bodies can drop to only 50%.
New studies from leading Universities, including Stanford, are urging people – especially women over 40 – to drink more water. An article published in an August issue of First for Women, breaks down the studies and what they mean. Water is associated with many health problems men and women experience as they grow older. The article, “Slimming Water Cure,” focuses on how water can help you shed pounds – especially those over 40.
Most middle aged women are dehydrated and don’t even realize it, explains Howard Murad M.D., an associate clinical professor at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine and author of The Water Secret.
“As we get older, stress, poor diet and environmental exposure damage the membranes of the body’s cells and weaken their ability to hold water,” he says.
The article states we are less likely to feel thirsty when we are older. As people become more dehydrated, they feel hungry more often, they are crankier, and more likely to eat an unhealthy snack. Which leads to gaining weight.
The old adage of “losing water weight” to get skinnier is actually bad advice. Healthier cells can retain more water, which actually aids in weight loss. All the studies cited in the article conclude that: “water drinkers lost more weight than dieters who drank less.” Women over 40 are the ones who can benefit most from this health tip, and the studies showed they lost the most weight when adding about 1 liter of water per day to their diet routine.
The type of water people drink is also important. Any old tap water sounds like a good idea, but that water is usually more acidic. Acidic water can actually further damage cell walls, which will keep unwanted fat on your body.
“For weight loss, research suggests that water with an alkaline pH of 9 to 10 works best,” says naturopathic physician Jennifer Burns, N.D., founder and medical director of the BienEtre Center in Phoenix.
Studies indicate alkaline water may be the best choice for many health reasons. Burns added that “alkaline water may counteract inflammatory interleukins in the body, which has the bonus effect of slowing aging, easing pain and improving sleep.”
The article also states that drinking water 15 to 20 minutes before meals can aid even more in weight loss. And added water bonus is that more water can increase energy 89% and lower heart attack risk by 41%.
This article was published in the August 4, 2014 issue of First for Women by Erin Quinlan.