Drinking enough water is essential for our mental and physical health especially for our skin, muscles, and joints. However, cold and warm/hot water can bring different effects to the body. There are beliefs that although drinking cold water can make it easier for your body to maintain a lower core temperature after an intense workout session, it can also contract your stomach. It makes food harder to digest after a meal which can harm long term health. Meanwhile, warm or hot water is believed to offer even more benefits than cold water.
This article discusses the benefits you can gain from drinking warm or hot water.
1. To detoxify the body
Drinking warm/hot water can help you detoxify your body. It gets rid of the harmful toxins in your body to protect your kidneys. Warm/hot water raises a person’s body temperature which helps them to sweat faster. Sweating removes toxins from the body.
2. To reduce shivering in the cold
It’s normal to drink hot drinks and to eat hot soup when the weather is cold since it gives warmth to our body. The natural reaction of a human's body in cold conditions is to shiver. Drinking hot/warm fluids and eating hot/warm food can help reduce shivering.
3. To relieve nasal congestion and sore throat
The steam from a cup of hot drink such as tea can provide a quick, lasting relief from runny nose, coughing, sore throat, as well as tiredness since the mucous membranes that possibly built up throughout your sinuses and throat will be warmed and soothed.
People who are suffering from itchy and sore throat can gargle warm water with a pinch of salt in it to clear the phlegm from their respiratory system. Drinking warm water with a tablespoon of honey and lemon is a good remedy in aiding and preventing nasal congestion as it helps mucous move more quickly to lose its thickness.
4. To aid digestion
Drinking warm water first thing in the morning is believed to be an effective way of activating the digestive system as it stimulates the flow of blood to your intestines. Warm water breaks down the food into small pieces faster than cold water. This remedy makes your digestion smooth.
5. To relieve constipation
Our body requires at least 2.5 to 3.0 liters of water every day which will be absorbed by our skin, lungs, intestine and mostly by our kidney. When a person does not drink enough water, most of the water they consume through food and drinking will be absorbed by the small intestine. This can cause dehydration which is the common cause of constipation. Constipation can give you difficulty having a bowel movement and it may cause other problems such as hemorrhoids and bloating. Drinking warm water as often as you can will also help you keep your bowel movements regular.
6. To relieve symptoms of achalasia
Achalasia is a health condition wherein the esophagus has trouble swallowing. People with achalasia find it hard to move the food down into their stomach so they often feel that the food they ate got stuck in their esophagus. Drinking cold water with a meal can worsen their condition. They need to drink warm water in order to digest their food more comfortably.
7. To improve circulation
If you take a warm bath regularly, your circulatory organs, specifically arteries and veins, expand and carry blood more effectively throughout the body. It improves circulation for a healthy blood flow which prevents the risk of cardiovascular disease. It can also help muscles relax and reduce pain which is perfect in preparing for a restful sleep.
8. To improve central nervous system function and stress levels
Drinking water, hot or cold, can improve the functioning of a person’s central nervous system so when you drink enough water, you can focus more on your demanding activities. Your anxiety or stress can be reduced too when you drink a warm/hot drink such as coffee or tea since its warmth may improve your mood and stress levels, resulting in calmness, satisfaction, and positive emotions.
9. To stay hydrated
Drinking water at any temperature is important in keeping us hydrated. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, engaging in physically difficult activity, or working in a hot environment then the more you need to drink water. Our body needs water to function the whole day so the value of drinking water should not be taken for granted.
10. To relieve pain
People in pain usually use heat packs and hot water bottles to reduce pain. However, drinking warm water also helps reduce certain types of pain, such as menstrual cramps, headaches, joint pains as well as muscle sprains by improving circulation and blood flow.
11. To reduce weight
Drinking at least 500 ml of warm or hot water before and after a meal helps break down body fats as it increases the body’s fat burning capacity and metabolism. Your body fat will be converted into molecules that can make it easier for your body to burn. Warm or hot water allows the body to burn more calories, resulting in increased weight loss.
12. To enjoy coffee and tea better
Tea and coffee do not only give warmth but they also offer some additional health benefits. Although coffee and caffeinated teas can dehydrate the body, especially at high doses, it also helps in reducing the risk of stroke and many diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes, some liver disease, heart health problems and some types of cancer. Tea and coffee are best to drink when they are mixed with hot/warm water.
13. To prevent hair problems
Since drinking warm water makes blood circulation become fast and active, the nerves of our hair roots are also enabled. It fights against dandruff and prevents scalp from getting dry to make our hair grow soft and shiny
14. To prevent premature aging
Most skin problems are caused by poor digestion. Drinking lots of warm water is good not only for our health but also for our skin. It makes our digestion smoother which results in healthy skin cells. The more liquid our body releases, the more toxins will be also removed from our body. It increases the elasticity of the skin to prevent acne, pimple and aging problems.
The temperature of the water is not a big deal as long as you keep yourself hydrated at all times for your overall health and well-being. However, warm water is healthier to drink than cold water as it gives more benefits to our body. Drinking hot/warm water doesn’t cure any diseases but it helps in minimizing the risk of having them and this simple method can also improve health conditions.