In my recent post, I mentioned that I only drink a smoothie infused with my favorite supplement before I exercise. This seemed to have sparked some interest in some readers because I have been getting some questions asking what I usually drink.
I just want to make it clear that I do not only drink smoothies before I work out. In fact, I drink 3-5 glasses or cups of different healthy beverages every day. Why? For various reasons, really. Whenever I feel a hankering for something, I just drink and most of the time, the hankering goes away.
Drinking beverages makes me feel lighter and less bloated compared to snacking on solid food. Water and other fluids we consume follow the same track other food articles take. However, instead of digestion water and other fluids involve absorption rather than digestion.
Let’s talk about absorption. You have to remember that everything we eat or drink goes to the stomach using the same route - the esophagus. The first stage of digestion is just like putting everything, solids or liquid, into a blender where they all get mixed up. That’s why when you drink a lot, you can still feel the liquid moving around in your stomach.
It’s a different story when it comes to water. You see, water is a very simple molecule, so there is no need for our body to break it down into smaller, simpler molecules. Water has no trouble diffusing through the phospholipid bilayer. This layer forms the cell membrane of human tissues. This cell membrane is made of small channels or pores which the water or water-soluble substances can enter. This means that water is directly absorbed through the epithelial cells that cover our body’s intestinal tract. Meaning, our small intestine is responsible for the absorption of most water we consume.
This may come as a surprise, but the small intestine isn’t actually small. It has a length of roughly 20 feet and an inner surface of around 250 square meters, making the absorption of water and other liquids quick and efficient. The small intestine absorbs 90% of our daily water intake, while the remaining 10% goes to the large intestine, which re-absorbs as much water as it can from the waste ready to exit the body as stool. Did you know that human feces contain about 150 ml of water? So, the large intestine does catch a significant amount of water from the would-be feces.
Now that we have an idea of how water and other liquids travel the body, let me share with you the best drinks to burn fat.
1. Ice Water
This drink should be available to almost everyone; it’s the easiest to come by and always available at home. When you drink cold water, your body needs to burn calories to heat it up and digest it. That is probably the easiest way I have ever heard to burn fat. Don’t go drowning yourself in ice water, though, because it can only burn a few extra calories. Drinking a glass of water before a meal also helps you fill up faster and feel full. I personally practice this.
Many people mistake hunger for thirst. They reach out for the snack cabinet right away when they start feeling “hungry”. Hold your horses! Before you snack out of boredom, make sure you drink water first. If, after 30 minutes, you still feel hungry, then that’s the time to make a move on the snacks. Another tip I usually do before I eat is asking myself, “Would I eat an apple right now?” If the answer is yes, then you are most likely hungry for real.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
Another drink I can swear by. In a glass of water, I mix in 1 to 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and drink it first thing in the morning. This drink does wonders for my constipation and acid reflux issues. After a few hours, I feel the need to go. Going is also made easy. I can also say that my acid reflux attacks have been reduced significantly.
Drinking apple cider vinegar also helps you feel full, which in effect decreases your calorie intake. It also slows down the rate at which the food leaves our stomach. Meaning, when you drink apple cider vinegar, you will feel full for a longer period of time.
3. Raspberry Drink
This is my favorite pre-workout drink. Raspberry is rich in antioxidants. As you know, our body produces free radicals. It is the antioxidant’s job to counteract the damaging effects of these free radicals.
My easy recipe includes a ¾ cup of raspberries, 40-45 ml of coconut milk or any milk of your choice, 2 tablespoons of honey, ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon (This is optional), water, and my favorite pre-workout supplement that gives me a much-needed energy boost. Blend everything. I like having this raspberry drink before I exercise because I can have it even on the way. This drink also boosts my metabolism.
4. Green Tea
Green tea stimulates the body’s metabolism. It helps detoxify the body, protecting it from different types of cancers, and enhancing our skin health. It is recommended that we drink 3 to 5 cups of green tea daily to see the maximum benefits on our body. Since it is rich in antioxidants, green tea is deemed to be one of the best diet and fitness drinks.
Green tea contains catechin, a type of antioxidant that fights and helps prevent cell damage. It also improves blood flow, reduces cholesterol, and prevents cardiovascular diseases.
5. Lemon Water
Okay, so you know how a lot of people say lemon water helped them lose weight? I’m afraid I have to debunk those claims. Lemon water does not help you lose weight. So why is it still included in the list? That’s because while lemon water cannot help us lose weight per se, it can reduce bloating; and we all know how much we hate bloating as it makes us feel heavy and sluggish. I figured it still deserves a spot.
Lemon water acts as a mild, natural diuretic. However, if you’re experiencing bloating for a long time now, it is best that you see a doctor to find out what the root cause is. You should steer clear off lemon water too if you are experiencing heartburn or acid reflux because the lemon water will only aggravate those symptoms.
Lemon water, or any drink for that matter, can magically help you get rid of the weight. These drinks should always be paired with a good exercise regimen and healthy diet.