Drinking Water Might Just Make You Smarter

A new study found that when drinking water, subjects were often better and quicker at mental tests

In case you're suffering from severe writer's block, as we are, here's a handy tip to wake that brain up: drink water.

The benefits of drinking water are well known, but a new study confirms that when you drink water, your brain works faster.

Researchers at the University of East London School of Psychology in England discovered that when adults drink water, they tend to have better concentration and perform better on mental tests.

The study, which was published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, had participants come in on two days after not eating or drinking after 9 p.m. On one day, they were given a cereal bar. On another, they were given a cereal bar and about 3 cups of water.

The participants were then given a reaction test, where they had to press a button as soon as they saw something pop up on a computer screen. When the participants were given water, their reaction times were 14 percent faster.

Researchers attribute the increase in speed to the lessening of dehydration, which actually shrinks the brain. "There are also hormonal theories about how dehydration affects the brain and it is possible that water is fixing an imbalance there too," lead study author Dr. Caroline Edmonds told the Telegraph. "Around 80 percent of the brain is water, so it is clearly important to make sure it gets enough."


Other factors could include the possibility of thirst being a distraction, but we'll stick with the dehydration/brain-shrinkage imbalance theory, since it explains many a drunken Friday night.