Doing THIS Before Meals Can Help You Lose Weight

Sure, it was only a couple of days ago that we learned that drinking eight glasses of water per day isn't actually a necessity. But, as many of our savvy readers pointed out, just because it isn't necessary for survival doesn't mean chugging H2O isn't beneficial. Case in point: A new study proves that by knocking back a couple of glasses of water before a meal, you could tip the scales in your favor.

We've heard about this strategy before—it makes sense, after all, that filling up on water before eating would probably leave less room for calorie-laden foods. But scientists at the University of Birmingham in the U.K. sought to actually prove it. After recruiting a group of 84 overweight adults for a 12-week trial period, they asked half of them to drink up to 16 ounces of water before their meals, while the other half was instructed just to visualize feeling full. 

The group that drank water ended up losing about three more pounds than those who didn't. Even more telling, those who drank more water (the full 16 ounces) lost more weight: up to nine pounds. "That’s about what you get from going to Weight Watchers for 12 weeks," says Dr. Amanda Daley, one of the lead scientists on the trial. 

Such a simple (and free!) habit can rival a beloved diet program? Say it ain't so. Water, you've officially been redeemed.

Our favorite secret to purifying water: activated charcoal! Try sticking Morihata's Kishu Binchotan Charcoal Sticks ($18) in your water bottle to purify any unwanted chemicals.