People who don’t drink enough fluids throughout the day are more likely to be obese, new research has suggested.
A health study published in the Annals of Family Medicine found people who weren’t adequately hydrated had a 1.5 times greater risk of being obese than those who drank plenty of water throughout the day.
As a result, researchers said that water “may deserve greater focus in weight management research and clinical strategies”.
According to the Eatwell Guide, we should drink six to eight glasses of fluid, such as water, lower fat milk and sugar-free drinks - a day.
University of Michigan researchers observed data collected from 9,500 people aged 18-64 and analysed people’s body mass index (BMI) compared with how much water was present in their urine.
They discovered that those who weren’t hydrated enough had a higher BMI than those who drank plenty of fluids.
In fact, those who didn’t drink enough were 1.5 times more likely to be obese, compared to those who stayed hydrated.
“We found a significant association between inadequate hydration and elevated BMI and inadequate hydration and obesity,” wrote the study’s authors.
They added that water is “an essential nutrient” and, as such, might be an effective weight management solution.
It’s not the first time water has been touted for aiding weight loss.
A recent study found that drinking a glass of water with a meal helped people feel more full than usual - a finding which could help prevent overeating.
MRI images showed that the stomach stretches after a person drinks a large glass of water with their meal, making them feel full more quickly.
“We’ve found that simply adding water increases stomach distension, curbs appetite in the short term and increases regional brain activity,” said lead author Guido Camps.