yoga summer health tip

Ice Water: Not A Cool Idea

As summer seems to have rolled in early this year with warm days, we might be inclined to grab a cold drink with ice. Or perhaps while waiting for food to arrive at a restaurant, we might sip on some ice water before eating. The next time you are inclined to sip on that chilly beverage, here are some things to consider.

Ice Water Negatively Affects Digestion

When one drinks ice water, it instantly puts the kibosh on digestion. When the ice water reaches the stomach, the body begins to warm up that liquid in the body. Why? Because the body’s enzymes for digestion work optimally at 98.6 – 107 degrees Fahrenheit. When the body is working to warm up that liquid, it is taking longer to digest the food. chinese-teaThis in turn causes a feeling of sluggishness and fatigue, and many nutrients and proteins go unconsumed in the body. Long story short, ice water robs the body of efficient digestion and doesn’t allow the body to get the full potential out of food that has been consumed.

Have you ever noticed how Chinese restaurants serve hot tea with your meal? Instead of consuming ice water, choose a hot beverage or a room temperature glass of water with your meal instead. This will increase your digestive fire and help your body to absorb the necessary nutrients in your food with greater ease.

Ice Water Doesn’t Cool You Down As Much As You Think

When I was visiting the Middle East many years ago, our family was out and about traveling and seeing the sites. As we stopped to take a break and grab some beverages, our guide proceeded to order some Turkish coffee (the Middle Eastern version a tasse of espresso). I asked him why he would get a hot beverage when it was turkish-coffeeblazing outside (and it was!). He began to tell me the body’s physiological response to the hot beverage: it sets off the body’s cooling mechanism, which is sweating, and this in turn brings the body temperature down.

People in India and much of Asia in warmer regions, as well as the Middle East, are notorious in their hot tea drinking as a means to deal with the heat.

Give this article a read to get more insight into how the tongue sends information to the brain to assist the body in cooling down.

Be well, stay cool, and enjoy your summer!

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