Benefits of water in the diet for weight loss, for general health

Published 1:10 am Friday, October 30, 2015

BY David Crocker

With the recent flooding and the horrific damage to life and property (they’re all in our thoughts and prayers), the subject of water is assuredly on folk’s minds.

Today’s topic is the health advantages to drinking water. This will be a two-part series, because of the plentitude of information I’m going to share with you.

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First, I’ll show you benefits of drinking water; then, I’ll share some amazing water facts you might not know.

One perk associated with drinking water is weight loss. Remember, there is only one way to lose fat. You can’t sweat it out, you can’t massage it off, and you can’t turn fat to muscle or muscle into fat. To lose fat, your body dissolves the fat into the bloodstream, it then travels to the liver where it is burned or metabolized. Blood is 83 percent water by volume, so if you are dehydrated, you just won’t lose much fat.

Water is also a great appetite suppressant. Drinking a couple of glasses of water before a meal will help you feel fuller, so you won’t eat so much.

Another benefit from drinking water is muscle health. Muscle is 70 to 75 percent water, so if you are dehydrated, it’s like running on flat tires, and remember, your heart is a muscle, too. Your muscles not only won’t work as well if you’re dehydrated, they won’t look as good either. They won’t be nice and toned, tight and shapely, and they’ll tend to sag.

Drinking more water helps alleviate constipation and aids digestion. Staying hydrated relieves fatigue. Water is used by the body to help flush toxins and waste products. Without enough water, your heart has to work harder to pump oxygenated blood to all your cells, so all your vital organs will be exhausted and so will you.

It is possible, however, to drink too much water at one time. If you were to drink two gallons at one sitting it could kill you by making your brain swell. This is known as water intoxication.

Now, here are some interesting water facts. Water weighs about eight pounds per gallon. Approximately 400 billion gallons of water are used in the United States per day. Water regulates the earth’s temperature. If the entire world’s water were fit into a four-liter jug, the fresh water available for us would equal only about one tablespoon.

Thirty percent of all fresh water is in the ground. At any given moment, groundwater is 20 to 30 times greater than the amount in all the lakes, streams, and rivers of the United States.

Water can dissolve more substances than any other liquid including sulfuric acid. There is more water in the atmosphere than in all of the rivers on the planet combined. It takes seven and a half years for the average American residence to use the same amount of water that flows over the Niagara Falls in one second (750,000 gallons). It takes more than twice the amount of water to produce coffee than tea.

Water makes up 66 percent of the human body. A jellyfish and a cucumber are 95 percent water. Seventy percent of the human brain is water. Over 90 percent of the world’s supply of fresh water is located in Antarctica. Forty percent of freshwater withdrawals in the United States are used for agriculture, compared with 65 percent in China. The freezing point of water lowers as the amount of salt dissolved in it increases. With average levels of salt, seawater freezes at -2 C (28.4 F). Water expands by 9 percent when it freezes.


Fitness or nutrition question? Email me at or visit David Crocker of Landrum has been a nutritionist and master personal trainer for 29 years. He served as strength director of the Spartanburg Y.M.C.A., head strength coach for the USC Spartanburg baseball team, The S.C. state champion girl’s gymnastic team, and the Converse College equestrian team. He served as lead trainer to L.H. Field’s modeling agency, and taught for four semesters at USC Union. David was also a regular guest of the Pam Stone radio show.