There’s a Lot More to Adding Ice Than Pleasing the Palate


Several years ago I visited Beijing on business and I was surprised to find that I couldn’t get ice for my drinks.  Not in my hotel…not in the restaurants…nowhere.  When I inquired about the absence of ice I was told that traditional Chinese medicine teaches that drinking cold water (or any other fluid is bad for your health.  Furthermore, traditional Chinese medicine teaches that the consumption of cold fluids is a contributor to excess fat.  What I laughed off at the time; I adhere to today because of what I’ve learned.  There is a whole lot more to cold fluid consumption that just pleasing the palate.  Before you run for the ice for your beverages, there are a few things about cold fluids that you need to know.

1. Cold Fluids Impact Digestion…not in a good way

According to a clinical study referenced in the Journal of Physiology,  drinking cold fluids has a negative impact on your digestive system.  We’re all familiar with how warm water opens our pores while cold water closes them; the same is true for your digestive system.  Drinking cold fluids causes your blood vessels to shrink which hinders digestion.  Instead of working toward the breaking down of your food and instead of efficiently absorbing nutrients from the food you just consumed,  your body is busy using its energy to regulate your core temperature instead.

“If you drink cold liquid with a meal then all of the fats will solidify and turn your food into a sticky sludge that slows down your digestion and becomes stagnant” 

2.  Cold Fluids Weaken the Immune System

Drinking cold water  (or any other fluid) especially after a meal, will generate excess mucus in your body which can lead to a decrease in immune system function.  A healthy immune system is not only key in avoiding the common cold; it is THE KEY to fighting off disease!    Although the cold fluid effect may not be huge for everyone consuming them, for someone with a compromised immune system (true for most Americans) it is definitely something to avoid!

3.  Cold Fluids Can Make Some Conditions Worse!

If you suffer from headaches or asthma, then you need to nix the cold fluids altogether for sure! Because the cold fluids constrict the blood vessels,  asthma symptoms (especially in children) are exacerbated and since migraines feed off of poor blood supply; cold fluids are a recipe for disaster there too.  Just say “no”.

4.  People Who Consume Cold Fluids Drink Less

Since lovers of the cold fluids find their beverages to be more “satisfying” to the palate; they drink less fluids than those who refrain from the cold in the first place.  Though some cold water lovers may insist that they’re consuming just as much as someone refraining from the cold; they aren’t living in a perpetual state of “brain freeze” so that’s not likely to be true at all!  Sipping on a cold beverage all day long is not the same as efficiently hydrating your body with a steady and consistent flow of room temperature H2O.

Your body is 70-0% water and it needs LOTS of it to optimally function.  No other beverage on the planet, regardless of its fancy label and false claims, can measure up to hydrating your body with clean, safe and HEALTHY (room temperature) WATER.




About the writer:  “I’m an Environmental Advocate specializing in water…a mini “Erin Brockovich” with SOLUTIONS!”

If you’d like to learn more about how something as simple as WATER can improve your health and change your life;  reach out to me! or 202.241.1542

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