Drinking Hot Water
5 Key Benefits

By Merlin Hearn


cup of hot water

Drinking hot water is a simple and inexpensive habit that can bring you noticeable improvements in your digestion and elimination, body detoxification and blood circulation.

We drink water to hydrate our bodies and it does not really matter if the water is cold, warm or hot.

For the most part, water is water when it comes to hydration.

While cold water may seem more appealing to most people, especially in warm weather or after exercising, the positive benefits of drinking hot water are worth noting.


Aids Digestion

Most people learn from an early age to drink an abundance of water, milk, tea, soda or other beverages during meals.  Perhaps they don’t think about how this affects their digestion. I know for a long time I did not think about it either.

Many health and medical experts have said that drinking fluids with food dilutes the digestive juices and impairs digestion.  But then there are other experts, such as Michael Picco, M.D., at Mayo Clinic, who disagree.

According to Dr. Picco: “Drinking water during or after a meal actually aids digestion.  Water and other liquids help break down food so that your body can absorb the nutrients. Water also softens stools, which helps prevent constipation.”

According to Nancy Hearn, certified nutrition consultant, the ideal way to support digestion and elimination with water is this:

  1. Drink half your body weight in ounces of water throughout the day to stay fully hydrated.
  2. Drink 12 to 16 ounces 30 before a meal to prepare the body for digestion and utilization of nutrients.
  3. During and after the meal, sip on warm or hot water or tea, which aids the chemical processes and heat generated during digestion. 
  4. Likewise, avoid ice cold beverages during and after meals, which will “put out the heat” needed to break down food.
  5. One hour after a meal, drink another 12 to 16 ounces of water to aid in the elimination of waste.

It makes sense to me that if the body requires chemical processes that generate heat to break down food, then drinking cold beverages before or after meals cannot be beneficial. I know I definitely feel better when I drink room temperature or warm beverages with meals rather than cold ones. 


Helps with Constipation

Constipation is a common problem that arises primarily due to the lack of water in the colon. When dehydrated, the waste material accumulates in the intestines and makes it much more difficult to pass through. 

Drinking hot water in the morning on an empty stomach will aid in the passing of stool and may help to relieve constipation throughout the day. To get additional benefits, squeeze one-fourth to one-half of a lemon in the hot water.

However, drinking enough water throughout the day is essential for maximum elimination of toxins from the body, not only from the colon but also from the liver, the kidneys and the circulatory system.


Cleanses Your Body

Another important benefit of drinking hot water is that it may help cleanse your body, which functions most effectively at 98.6 degrees. 

When you wake up in the morning, your body temperature will most often be lower than normal. 

Drinking hot water will raise your body temperature slightly, which may cause you to perspire. Yes, that is a good thing for your health.

Sweating is one of the four major ways your body removes toxins. The other three major channels of detoxification include breathing, urinating and defecating. 


Improves Blood Circulation

Drinking hot water also helps the blood flow more freely, delivering nutrients to the cells and helping to get rid of acidic waste in the body.

According to Sang Whang, author of “Reverse Aging:  “Water is a strong solvent; therefore, it carries many invisible ingredients: minerals, oxygen, nutrients, waste products, pollutants, etc.

"Inside the human body, blood (90 percent of which is water) circulates throughout the body distributing nutrients, and oxygen, and collecting wastes, and carbon dioxides. Every substance deep in our body was brought there by the blood and can be brought out by the blood.”


Eases a Sore Throat or Cough

If your throat becomes irritated, a cup of warm or hot water will work wonders. Warm water soothes a sore throat and can help to liquefy the phlegm that often comes with a tricky cough, allowing the extra mucus to come out easier and the throat to heal quicker.

Adding the juice of one-four to one-half of a lemon to a cup of hot water will increase the benefits. Lemon juice is a powerful antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal agent as well.


References

Sang Whang; Reverse Aging; 2006.

Mayo Clinic:  Water After Meals – Does It Disturb Digestion?


Further reading . . .

Benefits of Drinking Lemon Water


Return from Drinking Hot Water to Health Benefits of Drinking Water


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