Water is the elixir of life. Water helps you to maintain body temperature, metabolize body fat, aids in digestion, lubricates and cushions organs, transports nutrients, and flushes toxins from your body.
Does the temperature of your drinking water matter? Should you go for a glass of cold or warm water to wash down your meal? Should you go for a glass of cold water when you are panting for your breath after that grueling workout; the old dictum continues!
As experts and science continue to debate over what’s better for your system, let’s try and take a balanced view of the same and know how to make a better choice for our body.
Why the debate?
Well, there are scientific facts and experience-based inferences to support the use of both, cold water as well as water at room temperature. Let’s begin by looking at an athlete’s preference and the water he or she chooses to have. When you exercise vigorously, the core temperature of your body will rise beyond 98.6° F. In this situation, having cold water will lower your body temperature faster, helping it to settle back to its normal range quickly. Speaking from a scientific viewpoint, experts feel that cold water is absorbed quickly into your system than warm water, which further helps prevent dehydration from sweating and keeps you duly hydrated.
Moreover, surprising as it might sound, cold water is believed to be helpful in weight loss since your body will work a bit harder to warm up the water and hence, burn a few calories in the process. Just consider the fact that you will burn up to 1 calorie for warming up 1 gram of water to 1° C!
The Warm Water Crusade
However, the other side of the coin in appealing enough, if not more. Experts argue that when you have cold water after your meals, the blood vessels around your stomach shrink, slowing down the process of digestion. As the cold water will pass through your system, it will solidify the fats you’ve just consumed in your meals, which will make it harder to digest them and disperse through the waste. The intensity of the impact in this case would go on to consequences as dire as cancer and heart attacks.
Adding on to the tirade of arguments in support of warm water, a glass of lukewarm water in the morning can help regulate your bowel movements. In fact, warm water is believed to be aiding detoxification if you make a habit of having a glass of it every morning.
Balance Is The Key
As it emerges for the judicious use of most of the things that affect our health, balance is the key here too. We need to watch what we are doing, where we are and how we are feeling before choosing a glass of water that is cold or room temperature.
Here, we give you a few quick pointers that shall help you decide on what’s the best for you.
1. Watch your activity
Just give a quick thought to the activity you were doing a few moments back. That will tell how your body will react to the type of water you take. For instance, have a look at this:
- Have water that has been at room temperature after your meals, especially a heavy one
- Have warm water after you’ve just gotten up from rest
- Have cold water after you’ve exercised
- Have warm water if you are suffering from cold, flu or any similar symptoms
- Have cold water if the weather outside is warmer. This will help to keep your body temperature down.
2. Excess of all is bad
Nothing holds truer than this golden rule when it comes to your health. Having only warm water or ice-chilled water all the time can alter your body’s natural balance. Even if it goes against your taste or preference, have water at a temperature that your body will benefit the most in a particular situation.
3. Avoid extremes
This one is also another dimension of a balanced intake. Even if it is cold water, don’t make it ice-chilled. A simple glass of refrigerated water should be enough. It might even irritate your throat or your teeth, if you have some sensitivity. Similarly, warm water should be at room temperature not hot.
Think again – It’s all about finding the right balance between your preference and what’s right for you. Be judicious about how you take your eight glasses of water a day to keep yourself in good health.
Leave a comment below if you had moments when having a glass of cold or warm water particularly relieved you? Do you crave either one of them in specific situations?