Our bodies are made up of 70% water. Water is a main catalyst in many metabolic reactions in the body including reactions like burning calories and fat. However, it may not be the best thing to drink when you are eating.
Cold water could interfere with digestion
There have been studies that have shown that drinking cold water could increase one’s metabolism. Although this seems to be true, doing so when eating could have negative effects on digestion. The reason for this is that the body works harder to process the cold water than to focus on digestive processes, therefore causing issues like bloating, gas, and even heart-burn.
Water dilutes stomach acid and digestive enzymes
Drinking large amounts of water during a meal can actually dilute stomach acid and digestive enzymes. Why is this important? During digestion, the right amount of stomach acid and digestive enzymes are vital to breaking down food so that they can be properly absorbed. However, if there is not enough, food could get trapped in the intestine and serve as a feeding ground for unwanted bad bacteria. These bacteria can cause things like bloating, gas, constipation/diarrhea, etc. Also, in the long-run they could cause chronic diseases like thyroid disorders or a compromised immune system.
What SHOULD you drink during a meal?
If you must drink water during a meal, it is important to take small sips instead of big gulps. Also, choose to drink room temperature water instead. Even better to drink during a meal is lukewarm water with some fresh ginger. Ginger actually HELPS the digestion process and therefore can be taken without guilt while eating.
WHEN should you drink water?
Try to drink plenty of water between meals. This means one hour after a meal and 20 minutes before a meal. This way, you will feel well-hydrated and will not feel the need to drink during a meal.
HOW MUCH water do you need?
Of course this depends for every person. In general, however, each person needs around 30-35 milliliters of water per kilogram of weight. So, for example, if you weigh 65 kilograms, you need to drink approximately 1.9 - 2.3 liters of water per day. Download our app and this calculation is done for you automatically.
Take home message:
Make sure you stay well hydrated between meals in order to avoid drinking large amounts of water during meals that will disrupt the body’s natural digestive process.