Drinking water is very important for many bodily processes. These include transporting nutrients to cells, regulating body temperature, and lubricating joints. If a person replaces their usual morning beverage with water, they could experience several health benefits associated with increased water intake. This article explores these benefits and the scientific evidence that exists for each one.
1. To lose weight
Some people believe that drinking water in the morning can help with weight loss. For example, a 2019 study found that higher fluid intake was linked to better body composition in young adults. Before major meals, including breakfast An older study from 2010 found that middle-aged and older adults lost more weight when they drank 500 milliliters (ml) of water before each meal for 12 weeks.
The researchers attributed this weight loss in part to the decrease in energy intake from meals in participants who drank water. This means that they consumed less food than people who did not drink water before meals.
Thermogenesis is the production of heat. When a person drinks cold water, thermogenesis occurs to warm the water entering the body, which burns calories. An older study from 2013 looked at the water intake of 50 women, whose body mass index was between 25 and 29.9, along with a nutritious diet. She revealed that their body weight decreased after they increased their water intake to 500ml, three times a day, for 8 weeks. Participants drank the water before breakfast, lunch and dinner. The researchers attributed the weight loss to water-induced thermogenesis.
2. For mental performance
Water can impact cognition and mental performance, even minor dehydration can have negative effects on cognition, according to a 2016 study.
A 2019 review looked at the effect of hydration on cognitive performance. She found that there was a trend for improved mental performance in hydrated study participants. However, the researchers noted that the results were not statistically significant. Additionally, study participants drank water throughout the day. This may suggest that hydration throughout the day may be necessary for better mental performance rather than just drinking water in the morning.
Another 2019 study of male college students found that dehydration had negative effects on short-term memory and attention. Short-term memory and attention improved once participants rehydrated again. Therefore, if a person wants to increase their mental performance, specifically in the morning, drinking water can help.
3. Boost Mood
Drinking water can also have positive effects on mood. A 2014 study found that people who usually drank low volumes of water had better moods when they increased their water intake. The same research found that when people, who usually drank large volumes of water, decreased their water intake, they experienced more thirst, decreased satisfaction, and reduced calm and positive emotions. A 2019T study also found that dehydration negatively affected mood, while rehydration improved mood and symptoms of fatigue.
With this in mind, a person may wish to drink water throughout the day to experience lasting positive effects on their mood.
4. For the skin
Some people believe that an increase in fluid intake can improve the appearance and health of the skin. The peel contains about 30% water, which helps the skin stay plump, improving its elasticity and resilience. An older study from 2015 found that increased water intake could have a positive effect on the physiology of the skin, it appeared more hydrated, especially in participants who usually drank less water. A 2018 review found that increasing water intake can improve hydration of the outer layer of skin. However, the researchers noted that it was unclear whether this would benefit older people.
However, even adequate skin hydration may not be enough to prevent wrinkles or offset the effects of the sun, genetics or the environment.
Drinking water throughout the day can therefore help a person hydrate their skin, but they may not notice significant changes in their appearance.
5. For other bodily functions
Adequate water intake is also important for many bodily functions.
– The kidneys: Drinking water can help the kidneys eliminate waste water from the body.
– Urinary tract: increased fluid intake can prevent urolithiasis, which occurs when stones are present in the urinary tract.
– Cardiovascular system: people need adequate fluid intake for the proper functioning of the cardiovascular system. Dehydration and inadequate fluid intake negatively affected blood pressure regulation and vascular function.
– Joints and bones: Water is a component of the lubricating fluid around joints, which may help relieve joint pain.
Akdeniz, M., et al. (2018). Does dietary fluid intake affect skin hydration in healthy humans? A systematic literature review [Abstract].
Amenta, M., et al. (2015). Qualitative and nutraceutical aspects of lemon fruits grown on the mountainsides of the Mount Etna: A first step for a protected designation of origin or protected geographical indication application of the brand name ‘Limone dell’Etna’ [Abstract].
An, R, et al. (2016). Plain water consumption in relation to energy intake and diet quality among US adults, 2015–2012 [Abstract].
Benton, D., et al. (2016). Minor degree of hypohydration adversely influences cognition: A mediator analysis [Abstract].
Chard, AN, et al. (2019). The impact of water consumption on hydration and cognition among schoolchildren: Methods and results from a crossover trial in rural Mali [Abstract].
Chumpitazi, BP, et al. (2019). Review article: The physiological effects and safety of peppermint oil and its efficacy in irritable bowel syndrome and other functional disorders.
Dennis, EA, et al. (2010). Water consumption increases weight loss during a hypocaloric diet intervention in middle-aged and older adults.
Garcia, AIL, et al. (2019). Influence of water intake and balance on body composition in healthy young adults from Spain.
Mahmoud, AM, et al. (2019). Beneficial effects of citrus flavonoids on cardiovascular and metabolic health.
Palma, L., et al. (2015). Dietary water affects human skin hydration and biomechanics.