Not Losing Weight? Lack of Water Could Be to Blame

By Carolyn Suerth Hudson, RDN, LD
September 10, 2019

In this five-part blog series, our nutritionists are explaining five causes of stalled weight loss and tips on how to combat these issues. For more in-depth information, and even more surprising culprits, join us in our next Nutrition 4 Weight Loss series, starting the week of January 13, 2020.

Why-Water-is-Important-for-Weight-Loss.jpgChances are if weight loss is one of your health goals, you’re thinking food and exercise are your keys to success. And while those are important, actually let me correct that to say food in particular is crucial, there are a lot of other factors that may be stalling your weight loss. One of those culprits is drinking too little water. 

The first thing I tell my clients is the amount of water you need is directly related to your weight – the more you weigh, the more water you need each day. The general guideline is drinking one-half your body weight in ounces each day. So if you weigh 200 pounds, you need to drink 100 ounces of water a day, which equates to twelve and a half cups of water a day, far more than the eight cups we’ve all been told to drink.

How Lack of Water Slows Metabolism

Lack of water makes it harder for our kidneys to function properly, which then interrupts the liver’s job of metabolizing fat. So if you’re not hydrated, your liver pitches in to help the kidneys and can no longer metabolize fat, which leaves fat stored as excess weight (which probably isn’t your goal if you’re reading this!).  

Dehydration Indicators

  • Dry mouth/dry eyes
  • Less urine output
  • Yellow urine (not clear)
  • Headache
  • Dry skin and wrinkles
  • Dizziness
  • Tired/sleepy/lack of energy

Drinking enough water also helps to speed up your metabolism (and helps many of those indicators above!). Here’s just a sampling of the ideas we share in Nutrition 4 Weight Loss along with other bonuses to expect from the class.   

  • Add a glass of sparkling water to your daily intake to mix things up. With that goal in mind, add fun, fresh flavors like fruit, lemon juice, mint, lime, cucumbers, etc. Letting your water sit overnight with these flavors in a big mason jar gets the flavors going and is a refreshing alternative to plain water.  
  • Pick one new habit that you are willing to establish. Clients of mine have chosen to drink a glass of water first thing in the morning, or get up from their desks every hour to get a glass of water (work break and water break, win, win!), drink a glass of water before or during meals, and the list goes on. Get yourself a fun water bottle if that will help!
  • Two appointments (in person or by phone) with a licensed nutritionist to customize a delicious, real food eating plan that keeps you satisfied, energized and meet your needs.
  • Creative and passionate teachers who encourage you every step of the way along with the Nutrition 4 Weight Loss Community to support you in person and online.

To learn more tips and tricks to increase how much water you drink daily to unlock better weight loss, join us for the next round of Nutrition 4 Weight Loss starting the week of January 13, 2020 all over the Twin Cities. Our online Nutrition 4 Weight Loss series is always a convenient option, too.

Here’s to health goals achieved. We hope to see you soon!


About the author

Carolyn is a licensed dietitian at Nutritionl Weight & Wellness. Carolyn understands the impact nutrition has on health and well-being both professionally and personally. Working in a remote town in northern Canada, she saw the impact poor nutrition had on the health of people there. She then became committed to learning more and decided to pursue a degree in nutrition. Carolyn is a registered and licensed dietitian through the Minnesota Board of Nutrition and Dietetics. She received her BASc in Nutrition from Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and completed her internship at Toronto General Hospital. Carolyn is a past president of the Minnesota Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and past director on the board of the Dietitians of Canada.

View all posts by Carolyn Suerth Hudson, RDN, LD

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