Drinking Water Makes you Gain Weight


“Drinking water makes you gain weight.”

This is what female teenagers and adults think. They avoid drinking water especially at night. To give you the answer right away, “No. It is not true.” As many are aware of, water has 0 calorie, meaning that it does not have anything to do with gaining weight. Drinking a large amount of water may temporarily seem to add on weight, but body weight goes quickly back to the original state with diuretic effect. Here is some information on water which is worth knowing for our daily lives.

Tap Water vs. Boiled Water—what are the differences?

The fundamental difference between tap cold water and boiled water is the movement in water molecules and dissolved oxygen. For boiled water, water molecules become active while the dissolved oxygen decreases. It may easily be absorbed due to high movement of water molecules, but it has less oxygen than cold tap water. According to the Dr. Lee Seung-nam of Gangnam Best Clinic, “the best water is the most natural cold water.”

However, when it comes to components, spring/mineral water and “boiled and later cooled water” water do not differ much. This is because the oxygen that is diminished during the boiling process comes back when the water is cooled down. Also, mineral contents do not vary much. When tap water is being boiled, chlorine and other polluted substances are removed. This works even better when barley is put into the boiling water because with the absorbability, barley can remove about 20-30% of contaminants in water.  

Experts say water at the state of 11 to 15 degree Celsius has the best taste and absorbability in body. Dr. Lee said, “Water that is too cold or hot which hinders it from being absorbed. So drinking lukewarm water is recommended.”

When and How to drink water: 

Professor Song Mi-yeon of Kyunghee University once said that frequently drinking or sipping water is better than gulping it down. According to her, drinking much water at once lowers the water absorbability inside the body and thus, drinking water as if chewing it is advisable. When drinking water little by little and sipping it become a habit, one can actually drink more amount of water, more than the desirable 8 glasses per day.

There is a Korean saying that “drinking water after getting out from bed is like a restorative herb medicine/vitamin.” Drinking water in the morning is evacuant since the wastes accumulated overnight can easily be excreted. Also, it is good for blood circulation as well as for the kidney. Also, “morning water” is highly expected to prevent constipation. 

A research also revealed that drinking water half an hour before going to bed enables one to have sound sleep. This supplements the water loss in body due to sweating. Yet, one should remember that drinking many glasses of water may disturb the sleep for one has to get up and go to the toilet many times.

Can water make you slimmer?

Drink two glasses of water half an hour before every meal. Drinking an appropriate amount of water before meals makes you feel full and satisfied, eat less and eventually lose weight. This is because when human body has much water, metabolism is increased. Professor Joo Nam-seok at the Department of Family Medicine at Ajou University Hospital recommends the obese “patients” to drink two galsses of water before meals.

For the “water diet” to be fully effective, drinking at least 2 liters of water (split into 8 times) at an empty stomach before eating is desirable, says Professor Song.  So, this is how one should do: Drink one glass of water in the morning, during breakfast, during morning stretching, and during lunch. Drink another two glasses in the afternoon and three glasses before and after dinner. This meets the desirable volume of water per day.

Drinking water during exercise

One cannot emphasize more on drinking water before, during and after working out. Drink a small bottle of water (500-600 mL) about 2 hours before going to the gym. Then take another 500mL 15 minutes before you begin stretching. Some people may hesitate drinking water before exercising since they feel uncomfortable with the full stomach. However, when the body lacks water and gives off more by sweating, the blood becomes sticky and may eventually lead to blot clotting. Thus, drink water frequently even before you feel thirsty because thirst is one physiological signal that shows the body has lost 1-2% of moisture.

- Original source from Health Chosun, edited and translated by Biocera