Hydration is essential for your survival. The human body is made up of 70 percent, after all. It is important for people to consume enough water every day to keep their blood flowing, their organs working, and their body healthily functioning. When people fail to consume enough water, the results can be severe. Dehydration can lead to organ failure and permanent damage to the body.
Besides these obviously important reasons for drinking plenty of water, there are other benefits of staying hydrated. Being well-hydrated, for instance, can help you to shed more pounds and to be fitter. Simply drinking more is just one part of the strategy, however. When you drink water matters too- you should drink water before meals to get optimally fit.
1. Water Raises Energy Levels
Water is so essential to a person’s overall health that it affects the body even on a simple cellular level. The individual cells in the body, including the mitochondria (the energy cells), need water to function properly. Without enough water, the body even on the smallest scale does not have as much energy. Running on less than full amounts of energy diminishes the body’s ability to work out efficiently.
So, when a person drinks enough water, they have more energy. The benefit of drinking water before a meal is thus two-fold:
Most people regularly eat three meals a day. Drinking before every meal is a great way to ensure that the body gets water because it is easy to remember.
While eating a meal, the body must digest. This requires energy, which means that it requires water. Plus, digestion kick starts the metabolism, aiding the body in the process of distributing things consumed (including water) the most efficiently.
2. Water Primes the Muscles
One aspect of water hydrating and energizing the body is its role of priming the muscles for action. A lack of water in the muscles is directly related to muscles cramping and even having spasms. As a result of muscles not having enough water when exercising, more than cramping and spasms occur- muscles can be injured through strain or tearing.
By drinking water before eating a meal, the body efficiently hydrates the muscles, preparing them for exercise later on. One of the reasons that eating a snack or a meal before working out is a good idea is because it also provides energy. Combining both eating and drinking before exercise gives a double dose of energy for the body as a result, ensuring that the workout is efficient and effective.
3. Water Aids Digestion
Working out while the body is struggling with digestion can really ruin the effectiveness of the workout. Exercise requires a lot of the body’s energy and attention. Digestion does too. When the body has to divide between the two, both digestion and exercise quality can suffer. Many people find, for instance, that if their bodies are not finished digesting food but they work out anyway, they get stomach cramps or feel nauseous.
By drinking before a meal, digestion happens faster and more smoothly. The water consumed with food helps to wash food down. It also ensures that the digestive tract has enough fluid to carry out its processes efficiently.
Saliva, the first water-based fluid at work in the digestive process, is more plentiful when a person has recently hydrated.
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Water in the digestive tract also breaks down nutrients like soluble fiber, allowing the body to distribute and put such nutrients to work. Later in the process, water moves waste through the body and is excreted. Drinking before a meal gives the body enough water to complete these vital processes so that, when it comes time to workout- the body is ready.
4. Water Enhances Weight Loss
Being fit is about more than weight loss but being overweight does inhibit a person from really getting fit. People who are overweight consequently must lose weight to tone and strengthen their muscles and improve their overall fitness levels. Fortunately, drinking water before a meal helps people to lose weight as well.
A study has shown that people who drink a glass of water within a half an hour before they eat a meal lose weight faster than people who don’t. Although science cannot completely explain why water is as effective as a dietary aide, it is believed that the reason drinking water before a meal works for weight loss is that it makes people feel more full. When a person feels full, they eat less, sparing them the extra calories. The study resulted in people who drank water before eating losing about 3 pounds in twelve weeks.
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5. Water is Good for the Heart
Having toned muscles and a slim figure only matters so much if your heart is not also healthy. People over-exercise and over-diet, especially when overworking the heart. An essential organ in the body, the heart is necessary for survival. So, taking care of the heart is important for people to do both for their general health and their fitness abilities.
Not surprisingly, water is also good for the heart. A well-hydrated heart can more easily pump blood through the body as required for living and especially for exercising. The body needs blood pumped efficiently particularly when working out, as the blood is needed for the muscles to work.
Consuming water before a meal benefits the heart in particular because, just as drinking then primes the muscles, it also primes the heart. The prepared, hydrated heart won’t have to strain as much when the meal is over and the person gets back into physical activities.
Generally speaking, drinking more water is a healthy choice for most people. Plenty of water is needed to keep the body adequately hydrated in the normal course of the day. When exercise is added into the schedule, more water is needed.
By drinking before every meal, people ensure that they are hydrated. They make it easy to remember to consume plenty of water. Further, the body can do a better job of distributing and using water to give the body energy and the supplies that it needs to get fit.