One of the most common suggestions given to people looking to lose weight is to drink a big glass of water as soon as they wake up in the morning. This has been said to be the key to kickstarting our metabolisms, which in turn will burn more calories and help us shed those last few pounds a lot faster. However, that water may not be as much help as we think it is.
Popsugar recently consulted with some experts and found that drinking water in the morning doesn't actually boost our metabolisms. In fact, according to their sources, it really doesn't do much at all.
"It may help you cut out some additional calories throughout your day, but it will not help you burn more calories," Sarah Greenfield, director of nutrition at Hum Nutrition, told Popsugar. Drinking water first thing in the morning can also help people stay hydrated and be more in tune with their hunger cues, but has no real effect on metabolisms, she said.
Sarah explained that a fast metabolism means our bodies process energy and calories at a more efficient rate. So, rather than simply storing all this inside of us, our bodies use it as fuel. But water doesn't provide any energy at all and therefore won't have that desired effect on our metabolisms, she said.
Alex Caspero, a nutritionist with Hum, also says that eating hot peppers and drinking green tea and caffeine have been proven to induce thermogenesis, the process in which our bodies burn calories to produce heat. However, consuming foods and drinks that promise to boost our metabolism really won't have any lasting effect on our bodies, she said.
Alex explained that in the long run, the best thing we can do to boost our metabolism is to exercise, which Sarah added will help burn more calories.
"Muscle cells are more metabolically active than fat," she said. "What that means is your body will be burning more calories at rest the more muscle mass it has."
Adding more muscle can actually raise your metabolic rate, Alex said, which means the leaner your muscle mass, the less you have to do to burn calories.
The conclusion here is that if you really want to see a change in your metabolism, your best bet is exercise, not a glass of water. There's certainly no harm in enjoying some water when you wake up, but if you're looking for fast results, you may want to consider hitting the gym as well.