The body requires water to function optimally and avoid the hazards of dehydration. Depending on what you read, there are different opinions on how to properly hydrate the body on a daily basis. Doctors tend to follow the eight by eight rule, which involves drinking eight eight-ounces glasses of water per day. That’s not always sufficient for everyone, which is why it’s better to drink half your body weight in ounces of water for optimal hydration. That means if you weigh 150 pounds and divide that by two to get 75, you should drink 75 ounces of water every day.
Now that you know how much water you should drink per day and that hydration is essential for survival, you have to decide what temperature the water should be. Should you drink ice cold water or room temperature water? A refreshing glass of iced water on a hot day can feel like a gift from a divine spirit, but it isn’t always great to consume. As it turns out, the temperature of your drinking water may affect the body in various ways.
Cold Water vs. Room Temperature Water
Cold water is classified as any water that reaches a temperature between 32ºF to 37ºF, but adding ice to water will make it cold. Room temperature water is just that, room temperature. This may vary depending on the time of year or how hot/cold it is in your house. The general range of room temperature water is 68ºF and 78ºF. There is a time and place for each temperature range, and one isn’t better than the other. We will describe the benefits of when you should drink cold or room temperature water in detail below.
Situations When Cold Water Is Better
Drinking cold water is often beneficial when the body is overheated, but there are also other times when it is beneficial to drink. Let’s take a closer look at what those circumstances are below.
While You’re Working Out
It is very easy for the body to tire out during exercise. Due to the increase in body temperature during a workout, you naturally feel tired or fatigued. You can counteract this by drinking cold water during your workout. The chill helps to lower the body’s core temperature, which can help you feel more energized during your workout.
When You Want To Increase Alertness
Instead of drinking another cup of coffee, pour yourself a glass of chilled water. Decreasing your caffeine intake will help you avoid heart palpitations or that general jitteriness. Cold water actually helps the body produce adrenaline, the hormone that makes you more alert. Essentially, drinking cold water gives you the same effect as caffeine without the side effects that caffeine causes.
When You Are Sweating A Lot
If you are in hot temperatures, the body works to cool itself down by sweating. As a result, you lose a lot of water and electrolytes, so you have to replenish those fluids to avoid dehydration. If you drink warm or room temperature water in hot weather, you may actually feel that you are not as thirsty. This can be dangerous because you don’t drink enough water to replace the water you’re losing. For this reason, drink cold water to both cool you down and encourage yourself to drink more water to avoid dehydration.
Situations When Room Temperature Water Is Better
Room temperature water has its time, place, and benefits as well. Health experts believe that there are more health advantages to drinking room temperature water. It affects the body differently and may help you more than you realize. Read on to learn about the benefits.
When You Want To Boost Your Metabolism
If you want to give your metabolism a little boost, drink a glass of warm or room temperature water every morning when you wake up. The common thought is that your body burns more calories or gets an extra metabolic boost from having to warm itself back up. This is actually not the case. One study found that people who drank 16 ounces of room temperature water experienced a 30% increase in their metabolism within 40 minutes.
When You Are Congested
If you have a cold, flu, sinus infection, or nasal allergies that clog up your sinuses, drinking warm water can help promote decongestion. Warm or hot water also opens up your chest to help you breathe more easily. Cold water, on the other hand, may actually thicken nasal mucus and make it more difficult to breathe.
When You Want To Improve Digestion
If you want to promote better digestive function, drinking water will help your body stimulate the digestive process. When you don’t drink enough water, the body has an easier time avoiding constipation. A glass of warm water before bed will actually encourage the body to have a healthier bowel movement in the morning.