Is it Healthy to Drink Water During Meals?

By Mary Parsons, MS, RD

While any time is a good time to hydrate, we consider it a healthy habit to sip on a glass of water during your meal. Some people claim that drinking water during meals can hinder digestion, but there is no evidence that stomach acid or enzymes are significantly diluted by drinking water. In reality, water can help aid digestion by keeping the contents of the stomach and intestines well-mixed and by increasing solubility of digestive enzymes.

Drinking water during meals can also have some advantages for weight maintenance: Water takes up space in the stomach and can make us feel full sooner without eating as much food. And of course, choosing water instead of sweetened beverages can help to keep calories in check.

The ideal time to drink water really comes down to personal preference; everyone is different, so it’s important to listen to your body. Whether you prefer to drink during or between meals, just be sure to drink up!