Hampton Roads Weight Loss

Weight Loss Tips and Healthy Recipes

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Water & Weight Loss


I’ve heard that water is necessary for weight loss and that I should drink as much as possible to help me in my weight loss efforts.  Is this true?


There is some confusion surrounding the importance of water as it relates to weight loss.  Unfortunately, more research is needed to clarify the issue.  However, studies have clearly shown the importance of water in many other aspects, including some that are indirectly related to weight loss.  Let’s review what we do know:

  1. To function at its best, the body needs to be well-hydrated.  Our bodies are largely composed of water – about 55-60% of body weight.  It helps with many tasks including
    temperature regulation, cardiovascular function, waste product removal and metabolism.
  2. Although the body is efficient at regulating fluids, regular fluid intake (through food or drink) is required to keep the body hydrated.  We lose fluid through respiration (breathing), sweating, and feces & urine.  The result is a total body water turnover of approximately 5-10% per day.  Luckily, our bodies are very good at compensating for normal fluctuations in fluid intake by either diluting or concentrating urine.  However, sooner or later, water losses need to be replaced by fluid intake.
  3. Exercise is a hydration stressor.  Due to water loss through sweat, dehydration can set in quickly during prolonged exercise – especially in hot and humid environments.  The effects of dehydration are many and include decreased physical performance, cardiovascular stress, fatigue, depressed mental function, and heat illness.  Increased perceptions of fatigue during exercise reduces your tolerance for exercise – and therefore your ability to burn more calories.  (See Exercise & Avoiding Dehydration.)  In addition, even small amounts of dehydration have been shown to cause general fatigue, which may affect your desire to even start an exercise session.
  4. The extreme opposite of dehydration can cause problems too.  Ingesting large amounts of water without other added content (such as electrolytes, sugar, vitamins, etc.) can result in a medical complication known as hyponatremia.  When too much plain water is ingested, large amounts of electrolytes (especially sodium) are transported from the blood and tissues into the small intestine, resulting in a dangerous electrolyte imbalance.
  5. A small study has indicated that metabolic rate increases following water consumption by as much as 30% and is sustained for over an hour.1 The mechanism of the increased calorie burn is thought to be a combination of the energy needed to heat the ingested water and additional unknown factors.  The long-term effect of increased water consumption and weight loss has not been studied.
  6. Research has shown that cell hydration influences metabolism.  However, changes in reactions at the cellular level cannot necessarily be extrapolated to whole body calorie balance.  More research needs to be done to reveal whether extreme changes (either dehydration or optimal hydration) can actually influence the whole body’s caloric expenditure and/or fat loss.
  7. Contrary to popular belief, water intake before or with meals has not been shown to decrease the number of calories consumed during meals.2,3 However, it is interesting to note that when foods with high water content (such as soup) are consumed prior to meal, subsequent caloric intake at the meal is decreased.

In summary, the direct link between water intake and weight loss is not clear and should not be the main reason for your hydration efforts.  However, the importance of hydration to your health is very clear and hydration efforts are well worth your time.  Maintaining optimal hydration levels enhances your vitality and ability to exercise, thereby increasing caloric expenditure.  Although there may be caloric expenditures associated with water intake, the added benefit is small compared to the caloric cost of exercise.  Given the rare but potential danger of excessive water intake, keep your water intake within the recommended daily water intake.

Read more at myfooddiary.com

1 Water Induced Thermogenesis.  J Clin Endocrinol Metab 88:6015-6019, 2003.

2 Water Incorporated Into a Food But Not Served With A Food Decreases Energy Intake In Lean Women.  Am J Clin Nutr 70:448-455, 1999.
3 Does the Consumption of Caloric and Non-Caloric Beverages With A Meal Affect Energy Density?  Appetite 44:187-193, 2005.

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Tina Dawson, Assistant Retail Manager

With over 30 years of experience in IT, Finance, and Healthcare fields, Tina has served the healthcare industry in such roles as Project Manager, Practice Manager, Physician Recruitment and assisted with electronic medical record (EMR) conversions. She attended the University of Maryland in both Asia and Europe majoring in Computer Science and is fascinated with learning new technologies. Tina enjoys educating our clients on our products and programs and “celebrating their successes and milestones…one pound at a time!”. Don’t be surprised if she gives you a hug! For fitness and fun, she likes to “slog” (slow jog) races and enjoys competing in half marathons. “Come out and join me for the next one. Believe in yourself and you CAN do it!” For more information on weight loss in Virginia, please contact (phone or text) us at (757) 873-1880 today!

Jessica Kirby, Medical Receptionist

Jessica croppedJessica is the newest addition to the team here at CFWLS.

Dani Colley, Medical Assistant

Dani has over 35 years of experience in the medical field and has been working as Dr. Clark’s Medical Assistant for over 15 years. Her area of expertise is with the surgical patients. She works closely with Dr. Clark and is always just a phone call away to answer your questions or just lend an encouraging word!

Dani spends her spare time volunteering at an equine rescue or riding rescue horses.

Dawn Olson, LWMC, CPT, Education & Fitness Coordinator

Although her initial career was in Finance, Dawn’s passion for health & fitness motivated her to re-direct her energy toward helping others reach their goal toward a strong & healthy life. Counseling patients and teaching My Weight Loss Academy™ classes in lifestyle modification and nutrition keeps her smiling. “This is far more than a job, it’s an opportunity to help people learn and make positive changes in their health. Each day brings a new reward!”

Dawn is a certified personal trainer and worked in various fitness facilities before joining us in 2009. She also holds certifications in Exercise & the Older Adult, Aquatic Exercise, Chronic Diseases and Disabilities, Facilitated Stretching, Fitness Therapy and Lifestyle & Weight Management.

Cat Williamson, Office Manager

Cat Williamson was born and raised in Hampton Roads. She feels blessed that she lives close to the Ocean as well as the Mountains since she enjoys taking weekend trips with her Hubby. Cat has worked in a medical setting for more than 35 years and started working for Dr. Clark as his Surgical Coordinator over fifteen years ago. Due to her longevity here at CFWLS, she has “well rounded” knowledge in each program (medical or surgical) that Dr. Clark’s Center for Weight Loss Success offers. Cat, as the Office Manager ensures that daily structure is handled with a balance of professionalism and excitement for each of our Patient’s weight loss journey. She feels rewarded each time a Patient or Client peeks into her office to share yet another milestone toward their new life!

Cat Keller, Retail Sales Manager

CatCat Keller has a wealth of experience in marketing, e-marketing, advertising and customer service and manages our Weight Loss Nutritional Store. She is always planning something fun and exciting. special events, discounts, giveaways – it’s never a dull moment. She is happy to help you with questions you may have regarding our products or services. Cat is a graduate of William & Mary, where she studied Government/Pre-Law and minored in Marketing.

“My ultimate goal here at Center for Weight Loss Success is to help our clients be successful in their weight loss. We all know how wonderful it is to win a long fought battle. The battle against weight gain, and the poor health it eventually brings is, I believe, one of the most important to win because it brings with it the biggest pay off of all…a longer, healthier life. That is what motivates me to come to work everyday, it’s the opportunity to help a client achieve a renewed zest for life.”