There has been a debate since long on whether drinking cold water is good for your health or not. Some believe that it destroys the immune system, others believe that it doesn’t, while the rest don’t care at all!
The Chinese were the first ones to know, understand, and discover that drinking cold water, especially after a meal, is bad for your health, and it could affect the digestion process adversely. But the question that arises is how does cold water affect or hamper the digestion process?
You might be aware of the fact that warm water opens the pores of the skin and thus, our skin feels looser, whereas chilled or cold water constricts the skin and closes the pores. The same phenomenon takes place when we drink cold water. It constricts the digestive tract, making the process tough. Since the digestive system is hampered, our body doesn’t get enough amount of proteins and nutrients for other organs to function properly.
In this way, the entire body is affected by drinking ice-cold water. Our body enzymes work best at a temperature of 37–42⁰C, and when we drink cold water, the process of warming up the cold liquid uses the entire energy. This energy was supposed to be utilized for digesting food. As a result, the digestion process takes longer than usual, and thus, you feel tired soon.
Drinking refrigerated or cold water is against the principles of Ayurveda as it minimizes the strength of Agni (Fire), which could lead to problems such as indigestion and accumulation of ama (toxins), i.e. the root cause of various diseases. It is also said that drinking ice-cold water after a meal leads to excess mucus creation in the body, which makes the immunity system weak, and our body becomes more prone to catch a cold or flu. It also causes dehydration sometimes.
To protect their body from all such illnesses, the Chinese started drinking warm tea after their meal instead of a cold fluid. And the reason behind this was that having warm fluids enhances digestion, which allows our body to absorb the appropriate amount of nutrients and energy from the foods that we eat.
Mentioned below are a few more benefits of drinking warm water:
- Warm water stimulates the natural digestive enzymes, thereby enhancing the digestion process.
- Drinking warm water purifies the blood.
- It also enhances the process of detoxification via the skin and kidneys.
- It prevents the body from getting dehydrated.
- Drinking warm water prevents solidifying the fats from the food you have consumed, and it breaks down the food easily.
- It also enhances the bowel movement. For more effective results, mix lemon juice with warm water and drink it daily in the morning. This will cure all problems related to indigestion.
Once you start drinking warm water, you will get habituated to it, and you will soon notice a drastic improvement in your digestion.
Water is very essential; 80% of our body is made up of water. Thus, drinking it in proper quantity, at a proper temperature, and in proper intervals aids digestion and promotes good health. So, the next time you reach out for that glass of cold water after you have had your meal, just think of the nutrients and energy you might lose. The easiest ways to maintain a healthy body is by eating good food and sleeping well. A small mistake can disturb the process of digestion and cause illness.
Now that you know how to avoid these illnesses, ditch the practice of drinking refrigerated water and switch to warm or lukewarm water.