Do this one thing before every meal to lose extra weight

By now, you know should be drinking eight glasses of water a day.

So you've stocked up on bottled water... invested in a water filter... and made sure you've got a BPA-free water bottle to fill up when you're on the go.

But lately, the advice on water has gotten a little confusing.

Is plain water even enough anymore? Or does it need to be lemon water, aloe water, cucumber water, asparagus water, or that pricey and fashionable "spa water"?

Is your water too acidic? Not alkaline enough? Is it from a state that's been ravaged by drought?

Let me set the record straight here: Just make sure it's WATER.

Whether you like it cold, room temperature, or boiling hot... flat or sparkling... in a bottle or a glass... from the tap or from a mountain spring... flavored or au naturale... you'll be healthier and happier if you just DRINK MORE WATER.

And now, the latest research shows that drinking more water can also help you lose weight.

A study published in the journal Obesity had a group of overweight and obese men and women drink two large glasses of water, 30 minutes before each meal over the course of 12 weeks.

And guess what? The water group ate an average of 40 fewer calories per meal -- and lost an average of five more pounds than the control group that didn't drink the water before meals.

Now, 40 calories may not seem like much... but three times a day, every day for 12 weeks, and you've got 10,000 fewer calories consumed by the end of the study.

Besides, we NEED lots of water -- and more water than you probably think. Researchers from the University of Michigan reviewed nearly 10,000 adults, and they found that those with higher BMI and greater odds of being or becoming obese were also DEHYDRATED.

Drink more water, and you'll notice you've got clearer skin and you even feel more alert. Water can also help prevent or alleviate pain from a headache, and it helps rid your body of toxins.

You can also try eating foods with high water content. Research shows that nearly 25 percent of our hydration comes from food -- and if you get your extra water from things like cucumbers, lettuce, radishes and watermelon, you'll be hydrated and left feeling a bit fuller.

Water-rich foods absorb a bit more slowly and migrate into your cells more easily... so it sticks around in your system a bit longer and has the same benefit as drinking water, without flushing right through your system (and down the toilet).