The Dangers of Cold Water You May Not Know About

by Adel

Is There Any Proof for Warm Water?

If you have ever been in certain parts of the world, you will find that certain groups, like Chinese people like their water warm. Not only that, they actively avoid drinking cold water. In fact there are many cultures that prefer warm water to cold. Many believe having cold water with a warm meal can cause imbalance in the body. 

 Is there any scientific research to support this lifestyle choice though?

If you prefer cold water, worry not. There are no known large side effects to drinking cold water. Although there are more situations where it is actually more beneficial to drink warm water.

Cold Water and Warm Water, the Difference

First, the benefits of drinking warm water:

  • Aids in digestion
  • Helps relieve cold symptoms
  • Helps increase circulation
  • Removes thirst for longer than cold water

There are generally no risks associated with drinking warm water. It can only get dangerous if drinking very hot water. Cold water on the other hand has some benefits and risks:

  • Helps cool body after exercise or in heat
  • Can worsen cold symptoms
  • Slow digestion a bit
  • Does not relieve thirst as much as warm water
  • May cause headaches
cold water cup

What Proof is there Against Colder Water?

A group of women in a study drank cold water and those that experience migraines regularly were more likely to experience headaches. So there is evidence that cold water can make existing conditions worse. The study however, did not compare headaches from cold water and warm water. So, the benefit of the study is limited.

Why is Warm Water so Good?

A 2016 study showed that warm water has better effects on intestinal movement compared to cold water. Warm water may help with constipation since it helps with intestinal movement. Digesting warm water a few hours after eating helps move the food along the intestine, the same was not found to be true with cold water.

Drinking warm water has similar effects to drinking hot tea when you have a cold. The warmth of the drink helps in decreasing mucous. It also helps in bringing body temperature back to natural levels. Cold water, on the other hand has no such effects. In fact, cold water can make you sicker. The body has to manage the cold water while also fighting the virus. 

Warm water baths help with vasodilation. This is the process of increasing blood vessel size. Increasing blood vessel size also increases blood circulation in the body. It is likely that drinking warm or hot water will have a similar effect. Cold baths have their own benefits though, read about them here!

Drinking warm or room temperature water decreases the desire to drink water more often, though this may or may not be helpful. Drinking the appropriate amount of water for the body is important, and your desire to drink could affect that. Make sure to observe the color of your urine to see if you need more water. There are many guides on how much you should drink in a day, the best guide though is to see the color of your pee. The clearer your pee is, the more hydrated you are. So, see how hydrated you are and adjust accordingly. 

Should You Avoid Cold Water?

Different activities affect your health and hydration much more than the temperature of your water. Ultimately there is no strong evidence that cold water is very bad for you, especially if it is a few degrees below room temperature. The most important thing is to stay hydrated and drink a lot of water, regardless of the temperature. 

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