Why drinking cold water can be bad for your Health


Its long been known in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda that drinking warm water is healthier than drinking cold water. And yet still a lot of people drink cold or even ice water.


Did you know that drinking cold water can give you indigestion?

In Chinese medicine we know that drinking cold water or eating cold and raw food injure the Stomach and the Spleen, interfering with their normal function. Stomach and Spleen are in charge of digestion and they are the ones that use food to produce Qi and Blood, the basic for all functions in the body.

If Spleen and Stomach fail to produce enough Qi and Blood our body will lack energy causing sluggish digestion, bloating and tiredness.


What does that mean in western terms?

The enzymes in our digestive system need our body temperature to work properly. When we drink cold water, especially after eating a meal the temperature in our stomach goes down. The blood vessel constrict due to the colder temperature, what leads to degrease blood flow in the muscles stomach wall (the stomach is a muscular organ). These muscles need a good blood flow for peristalsis - the contraction, which moves the digested food (chyme) through the digestive system. We need good blood flow in our digestive system to absorb nutrients. When the blood flow is reduced we don't absorb nutrients as well.


The lower temperature in our stomach cause the digestive enzymes to slow down their work of breaking down food. Because these little guys need a certain temperature to break down food properly. If its not broken down properly it can lead to bloating.

The stomach does warm again of course, but it costs the body extra energy and instead of just spending energy on digestion it has to warm the stomach. Basically a waste of energy.


All this also happens when you eat or drink anything frozen or straight out of the fridge.

In Chinese medicine raw foods are also considered "cold" for the body.

If you already experiencing digestive issues, maybe its worth a try to cut back on cold things and rather drink warm water or tea and rather eat something cooked instead of raw.



Cold water can aggravated menstrual cramps


Chinese Women know not to drink ice cold drinks before they get their period, because it can cause menstrual cramps. Women that get cramps due to cold in the body, will often experience more severe cramping when drinking cold drinks before or during their period.


Its best to drink warm drinks in the time before, during and a couple days after you had your period. The warm water increases blood flow in the body, what is very important to reduce pain.

If Qi and Blood can't flow it creates pain, if it flows no pain. Also the reason why we rather have a heat pad instead an ice pack on our lower abdomen during our period.


The Liver, Spleen and Kidney channels start on the feet and run through the pelvis and all can affect menstruation. Menstrual problems and even infertility can occur when any of these channels is blocked, congested or deficient. Cold feet can slow and congest the blood and energy flow to the uterus, due to the connection of the feet with the uterus via the channels. So ladies please keep your feet warm!





Resources:

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/319673

https://www.scienceabc.com/eyeopeners/drinking-cold-water-harmful-health.html




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