How to Make a Homemade Drink to Lose Weight

By Karen McCarthy

People who lose weight at a slower pace by regularly exercising and watching their diet, are more likely to keep the weight off than those who rush to lose a bunch of pounds, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. You lose weight when you burn more calories than you consume over time, and what you drink can influence your calorie intake.

(1). Whereas soda and some types of juice tend to be high in calories and low in nutrition, healthier drinks you can make at home with fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs are lower in calories but high in nutrition.

Lemon Water

According to an article published in the "Journal of the American College of Nutrition" in 2005, having enough vitamin C is required for maintaining a healthy weight. People who get adequate vitamin C oxidize 30 percent more fat during exercise than those with a low vitamin C intake. The juice of one medium lemon contains 40 percent of the daily value of vitamin C, with only 15 calories and 5 grams of carbohydrates. Make a lemon water drink by cutting a fresh lemon in half and squeezing one half or both halves into a glass of water. Drink this in place of sugary juices or sodas to reduce your caloric intake for weight loss.

Slimming Smoothies

Most Americans -- especially people on low-carb diets -- do not get enough fiber, according to a comprehensive review of studies on dietary fiber and weight loss published in "Nutrition" in 2005. Increasing fiber in your diet can help you lose weight by increasing satiety, reducing your body's absorption of carbs and balancing gut hormones. Aim for 20 to 35 grams of fiber daily, especially from high-fiber fruits and vegetables. Put fruits and raw vegetables in a smoothie for a satiating weight-loss drink that can be a snack or a meal. Use fiber-rich fruits as the base of the smoothie, such as bananas, apples, pears, peaches and berries. Then add a few leaves of a leafy green vegetable, like kale or spinach.

Herbal Tea

Many herbs you can brew as tea can help in your weight-loss efforts, although no herb works to magically shed pounds, according to an article published in "The Journal for Nurse Practitioners" in 2010. Stress has been found to contribute to weight gain, and adaptogenic herbs favor weight loss by reducing stress, boosting energy and normalizing glucose metabolism. These include ginseng, holy basil, licorice, ashwagandha, codonoposis and schizandra. Herbs that work well to reduce stress and anxiety are Valerian root, hops, skullcap, passionflower, lemon balm, California poppy and St. John's wort. Digestive health is also important in weight loss. Fennel, licorice, lemon balm, catnip, anise, peppermint and chamomile are all herbs that stimulate the digestive tract to improve digestion. Drink your tea unsweetened to avoid taking in excess calories.

Tips and Precautions

When it comes to drinking for weight loss, simply pouring a glass of calorie-free water is a great strategy. Plus, a study published in "Obesity" in 2011 found that obese patients who drank half a liter of water before every meal experienced more weight loss than those who did not. Lemon water and herbal tea can count as water. Keep in mind that certain herbs interact with medications, so consult your doctor before drinking any new herbal teas. If you haven't been consuming many foods high in fiber, introduce fiber-rich foods into your diet slowly to avoid gas and bloating.

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