Hot Water      foto credit: juice basin

Strictly speaking, water refers to the liquid state of a substance that prevails at standard ambient temperature and pressure. While there is little scientific research on the benefits of drinking hot water, alternative health advocates argue that hot water is an easy way to improve health, according to wikipaedia. In this write up, we look at the evidence shown by drinking hot water. Many people that drink it as a holistic health remedy do so first thing in the morning or right before bed for optimal health benefit. “Hot” water shouldn’t be scalding your taste buds. More specifically, water should be warmed to between 120°F and 140°F.

Hot beverages, such as coffee or tea, are often served at near-boiling temperatures. It is not necessary for a person to risk a burn to gain the benefits of hot water. People who dislike it should consider drinking water at or slightly above body temperature. By adding a twist of lemon for a vitamin C boost and you’re already on your way to better health.

Here are ways that drinking hot water might be beneficial to you.

1. Improved circulation
Although no studies have directly linked hot water to sustained improvements in circulation, even brief improvements in circulation can support better blood flow to muscles and organs. It is a vasodilator, meaning it expands the blood vessels, improving circulation. This can help muscles relax and reduce pain.

2. Reduced Pain
People routinely use heat packs and hot water bottles to reduce pain. Consuming hot water may offer some internal pain relief, but it is important to note that heat can also exacerbate swelling. It improves circulation and may also improve blood flow, particularly to injured muscles. No research has directly linked it’s consumption to pain relief.

3. Healthier digestion
Chronic dehydration can cause corresponding chronic constipation. This constipation can make bowel movements painful and may cause other problems, including hemorrhoids and bloating. Drinking hot water reduces the risk of constipation.

Drinking it both soothes and activates your digestive tract. Water is, after all, the lubricant that keeps your digestion going. As the water moves through your stomach and intestines, digestive organs are better hydrated and able to eliminate waste. It can dissolve and dissipate things you’ve eaten that your body might have had trouble digesting.

4. Calms central nervous system
Drinking hot water can calm your central nervous system and lubricate your body. When your nervous system is primed for healthy and controlled reactions, you’ll find that you feel fewer aches and pains, as well as less panicked throughout your day. People that have arthritis might get an extra benefit from using hot water to calm their central nervous system.

5. Weight Loss
Many research works has long supported the idea that drinking more water can help a person lose weight. This may partially be because drinking water increases feelings of fullness. Water also helps the body absorb nutrients, and it flushes out waste.

A study published in 2003 found that switching from drinking cold water to hot water could increase weight loss. Researchers found that drinking 500 ml of water before a meal increased metabolism by 30 percent.

Increasing water temperature to 98.6 degrees accounted for 40 percent of the increase in metabolism. This metabolic step-up lasted for 30-40 minutes, following water consumption.

6. Keeps you hydrated
Hot water is no different than room temperature or cool water when it comes to keeping you hydrated. You should be getting nine to twelve 8-ounce servings of water in your diet every day, but that’s a hard target for most people to hit. You can start your day with a serving of it, and ending your day with another, will get you that much closer to being adequately hydrated. Your body needs water to perform basically every essential function, so the value of that cannot be overstated.

7. Reduces pain
Hot water improves circulation and may also improve blood flow, particularly to injured muscles. No research has directly linked hot water consumption to pain relief.

However, people routinely use heat packs and hot water bottles to reduce pain. Consuming hot water may offer some internal pain relief, but it is important to note that heat can also exacerbate swelling.

8. Reduces stress
A soothing cup of hot water may help people manage stress and anxiety. An older study found that consumption of hot liquids, such as tea and coffee, could lower stress and reduce feelings of anxiety.

The study argues that some of the effects are due to caffeine, but that the warmth also played a role in the improved mood of participants.

9. Relieves nasal congestion
The warmth of hot water creates steam. Taking a deep inhale of this gentle vapor while holding a cup of hot water can help loosen clogged sinuses and even relieve a sinus headache. Since you have mucous membranes throughout your neck and upper torso, drinking it can help warm that area and soothe a sore throat caused by mucous buildup.

10. Fighting colds
The heat applied to the sinuses can alleviate pressure caused by colds and nasal allergies. Steam also helps unclog the sinuses.

Drinking hot water may help mucous move more quickly. This means that drinking it may encourage coughing and nose-blowing to be more productive.

Risks of drinking hot water
The major risk of drinking hot water is one of being burned. Water that feels pleasantly warm on the tip of a finger may still burn the tongue or throat. A person should avoid consuming water that is near boiling temperature, and they should always test a small sip before taking a gulp.

Drinking it in a covered, insulated cup can reduce the risk of spilling the water and getting burned.

Drinking caffeinated coffee or tea may cause a person to become overcaffeinated or jittery.

You can prevent this by limiting the cups of coffee or tea they consume, or replacing caffeinated drinks with plain hot water.


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