The Water Diet, sometimes known as the Cold Water Diet, is one of the latest fads that appeal to dieters who want to melt away their fat 12. ** Compared to fasting "cleanse" diets and those that restrict caloric intake, such as the Rice Diet, the Water Diet doesn't limit food consumption, nor does it require exercise 12. * The appeal of the Water Diet is that dieters can purportedly eat what they want--and still lose weight 12. *
Water Diet Creation
The exact origin of the Water Diet is unknown 12. ** Some Internet resources trace the diet to an article written and published in 1997 by the Institute for Psychoactive Research in Durham, North Carolina, while Douglas Silver Porter, purportedly a "doctor and a scientist," also lays claim to inventing the Water Diet 12. ****
"Science" Behind the Water Diet
Lemon, Cayenne Pepper, Honey & Water Diet
The theory behind the Water Diet is that when cold water is ingested, the body burns extra calories to heat the water up to a body temperature of 98.6 degrees F. The colder the water, the harder the body works to warm up the water 1(http://www.prisoners.com/cwaterd.html 'inline-reference::The Cold Water Diet: D.S.
**Porter'). * Therefore, even more calories would be burned if a dieter drinks very cold water. Additionally, drinking water in between or with meals gives dieters a sense of fullness, making them less likely to want to eat. Because the kidneys must work to process water, it is also said that the Water Diet results in toxins being flushed from the body 12. ***
- The theory behind the Water Diet is that when cold water is ingested, the body burns extra calories to heat the water up to a body temperature of 98.6 degrees F. The colder the water, the harder the body works to warm up the water 1(http://www.prisoners.com/cwaterd.html 'inline-reference::The Cold Water Diet: D.S.
How the Diet Works
On the Water Diet, the dieter drinks 64 oz 12. ** of cool or cold water in eight 8-oz. ** servings over the course of the day, with or without meals, in addition to the dieter's normal fluid intake. The water can be tap water, bottled water or any other kind of water that is safe to drink 1.
The available resources on the Water Diet discourages chewing on ice cubes to make up for water intake 12. ** The Water Diet does not alter the types of foods the dieter eats, nor does it limit portion size 12. ** Exercise is not a component of the Water Diet 12. ****
Pros and Cons of the Water Diet
The advantages of the Water Diet is that it's free--anyone with access to drinking water can try it 12.
** The disadvantages is that dieters will find themselves fleeing to the bathroom frequently. While some experts support the notion that drinking water before a meal can help a dieter cut calories, the Water Diet does not address the very necessary components of dieting, such as limiting overall daily calorie intake and incorporating exercise into the dieter's daily routine 12. ** As reviewers of the Water Diet point out, the Water Diet is not really a diet--it simply encourages people to drink the amount of water that they should be drinking in the first place 12. ****
- The advantages of the Water Diet is that it's free--anyone with access to drinking water can try it 1.
Effectiveness of the Water Diet
While there has been no scientific research conducted on the efficacy of the Water Diet, two Arizona men in 2008 claimed to lose weight while using the "Before, During and After" strategy, which is markedly similar to the Water Diet 12. ** Jeff Schmidt lost 50 lbs.
in one year, taking him from a size 40 to a size 34.
**Blake Silvia claimed to lose 10 lbs.
a month for a total weight loss of 70 lbs. ** without dieting. The two men drank one glass of water before meals, one during and one after eating 1.
- While there has been no scientific research conducted on the efficacy of the Water Diet, two Arizona men in 2008 claimed to lose weight while using the "Before, During and After" strategy, which is markedly similar to the Water Diet 1.
- in one year, taking him from a size 40 to a size 34.
Lemon, Cayenne Pepper, Honey & Water Diet
What Is Sassy Water in the Flat Belly Diet?
What Is a Eucaloric Diet?
The Effects of Alcohol & Caffeine on Dehydration
Nutrition Facts of Dasani Water
Can Drinking Water Control Hunger Pains?
Patient Information on a Fluid-Restriction Diet
What Foods Can I Eat When on the Lemon, Cayenne & Pepper Detox Diet?
The Water & Bread Diet
- Ohashi Y, Sakai K, Hase H, Joki N. Dry weight targeting: The art and science of conventional hemodialysis. Semin Dial. 2018;31(6):551-556. doi:10.1111/sdi.12721
- Beverages, water, tap, drinking. FoodData Central. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Published April 1, 2019.
- Dietary reference intakes for water, potassium, sodium, chloride, and sulfate. National Academies Press, 2005.
- Jéquier E, Constant F. Water as an essential nutrient: The physiological basis of hydration. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010;64(2):115-23. doi:10.1038/ejcn.2009.111
- Popkin BM, D'Anci KE, Rosenberg IH. Water, hydration, and health. Nutr Rev. 2010;68(8):439-4358. doi:10.1111/j.1753-4887.2010.00304.x
- Adan A. Cognitive performance and dehydration. J Am Coll Nutr. 2012;31(2):71-8. doi:10.1080/07315724.2012.10720011
- Dennis EA, Dengo AL, Comber DL, et al. Water consumption increases weight loss during a hypocaloric diet intervention in middle-aged and older adults. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2010;18(2):300-307. doi:10.1038/oby.2009.235
- National Institutes of Health Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center. Aquagenic urticaria. Updated June 20, 2016.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Well testing. Updated April 10, 2009.
Lisa Sefcik has been writing professionally since 1987. Her subject matter includes pet care, travel, consumer reviews, classical music and entertainment. She's worked as a policy analyst, news reporter and freelance writer/columnist for Cox Publications and numerous national print publications. Sefcik holds a paralegal certification as well as degrees in journalism and piano performance from the University of Texas at Austin.