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Turn the Tap On; Take the Weight Off

It's long been suggested that drinking water can help with weight loss, but now a scientific study lends some credence to the claim.

Researchers presented a paper Monday at the American Chemical Society conference in Boston on a randomized controlled trial involving obese people aged 55 to 75 who were put on a diet.

One group drank two cups of water before their meals, and the other group did not.

Over a 12-week period, the water drinkers lost about 15.5 pounds, while the other group lost about 11 pounds.

The study's senior author, Brenda Davy of Virginia Tech, says the participants were followed up for another year as they continued their weight-loss efforts to see if they could keep the pounds off.

She says the water-drinking group appeared to do a little bit better.

"A very simple message is that in the U.S., we consume about 450 calories from beverages each day," Davy said in an interview.

"And so this might be a very simple strategy to cut back on calories by replacing some of the sugar-sweetened beverages we often consume with water. And as part of a weight-loss effort, drinking more water may help individuals be even more successful."

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