Add this to your water if you happen to’re making an attempt to drop some weight – eat this, not that
We are constantly reminded that one of the most important parts of promoting good health is drinking enough water. Aside from keeping you hydrated, water has so many benefits: it can boost your metabolism, give you energy, improve your skin, reduce bloating, and more. It can also be an important tool for those trying to lose weight.
But despite the fact that we know all this, drinking water can sometimes feel like a chore, especially when you’re not actively thirsty. Sometimes you just need a bit of flavor to spice things up. We spoke to nutritionist and member of our Medical Expert Board, Lisa Young, Ph.D., RDNand author of Finally Full, Finally Slim, About four of the best ways to infuse your water with natural flavors that make it easier to drink more while maximizing its potential as a weight loss tool. Even better? None of this comes in a package.
Not only does lemon add a zesty, refreshing taste to boring, old water, but it’s also fortified with the antioxidant vitamin C. There are many health benefits of getting enough vitamin C, but not getting enough of it can also be related to weight. Research published in the Nutrition & Metabolism (London) Journal suggested that women with vitamin C deficiency are associated with obesity and adiposity – being severely or morbidly overweight. Young points out that lemon also contains d-limonene. This chemical compound, found naturally in the peel of citrus fruits, has anti-cancer properties and may also help relieve heartburn.
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Have you ever wondered why so many fancy spas always seem to have a giant tub of pickle water? A refreshing addition to any drink, cucumber is a light and crunchy fruit (that’s right, it’s actually a fruit!) that’s also great for weight loss.
“Cucumber is high in water and low in calories,” says Young. “It may also help act as a diuretic and get rid of fluid buildup.”
A cucumber contains about 38.3 grams of water. Its high water content makes it a low energy density food that helps you feel full, while the low calorie count makes cukes a great weight loss snack.
In addition, according to a study published in the journal Nutrients, eating foods with lower energy densities can be associated with weight loss.
This herb is more than just a side dish that smells delicious.
“Mint contains anti-inflammatory properties and may also ease indigestion and suppress appetite,” says Young.
In a study published in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, plant extracts were examined in relation to helping to treat and prevent obesity. Researchers concluded that these natural resources have powerful antioxidant abilities that can help both treat and prevent obesity. Mint is also one of the 39 plants reported in Traditional Arabic Palestinian Herbal Medicine (TAPHM) to be used for weight loss.
Apples and berries are delicious on their own, but these fruits also make a powerful combination when added to your water.
Young explains that apples and berries are high in fiber and low in calories — both properties that complement weight loss.
A cup of blueberries has 3.6 grams of fiber, or 14 percent of your recommended daily value, while a cup of sliced apple has about 2.6 to 3 grams of fiber, or ~10 to 11 percent of what you need in a day, yielding both of these fruits excellent sources of fiber.
High-fiber foods are digested more slowly than low-fiber foods, which means you’ll feel fuller for longer.
Of course, you could also opt for apple- or berry-flavored water, but Young suggests that the fruit blend adds an extra delicious flavor that will entice you to drink as much water as you need — and maybe even more.
Kayla Garritano is a contributor to Eat This, Not That! She graduated from Hofstra University, where she majored in Journalism and minored in Marketing and Creative Writing. Continue reading