Does drinking warm water improve digestion?
Research has shown that sipping liquids at body temperature keeps food moving between the stomach and small intestines, while drinking ice-cold or piping-hot beverages slows digestion, potentially leading to nausea, bloating and erratic glucose levels. Mark Mincolla, Ph.D., a nutritionist and natural health therapist in Cohasset, Mass., advises his patients to weave three cups of warm water (around 100 F) into their daily regimen, preferably 30 minutes before meals. “Water is best, but tea is a great alternative,” he says. “You can add lemon to either- just stay away from sweeteners.”
Don’t get so hung up on the temp that you avoid swigging altogether though. “Staying hydrated boosts overall health and helps prevent issues brought on by insufficient water consumption, such as kidney stones,” says Jay Kuemmerle, M.D., interim chair of the Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition department at the Medical College of Virginia Campus, Virginia Commonwealth University. Bottom line: Water is critical to digestion, so drink the recommended amount of water (at least nine 8-ounce glasses a day) at the temp that works for you
By Julia Dennison