Why Is it Healthy to Drink Hot Water?

Hydration is obviously a key element to your overall health. But is it healthy to drink hot water, as opposed to ice or room temperature water? As it turns out, the temperature of your water might affect the way your body responds to it.

Some people swear by hot water as a health remedy, touting its benefits for digestion and weight loss. (Image: borchee/E+/GettyImages)

Tip

Hydration is crucial for overall health, but there's no science-backed reason to drink hot water rather than cold or room temperature water.

Why Hot Water?

Water comprises between 55 percent and 75 percent of your overall body weight, depending on age, sex and height. It is as crucial to your daily functioning as oxygen, and without it, you experience some pretty serious health issues. Dehydration can cause everything from a minor headache to impaired cognitive performance, depending on severity.

For optimal hydration for healthy people, aim to drink at least 4 and 6 cups of water per day. The exact amount you need depends on your weight, level of activity and whether you're spending lots of time in the heat. When consumed regularly throughout the day, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says water can aid in your digestion, improve your mood and help manage your body weight.

People typically think of water as a beverage served at room temperature or cold. But some people swear by hot water as a health remedy, touting its benefits for digestion and weight loss. According to Ayurvedic medicine, hot water helps with digestion and keeps the body's systems in balance. But be careful not to drink it too hot — a study featured in the March 2019 issue of the International Journal of Cancer found that regular consumption of extremely hot beverages (140 degrees Fahrenheit) can lead to an increased risk of esophageal cancer.

Unfortunately, current research doesn't support the idea that one temperature of water is better than another for your health. You may love your morning cup of hot water with lemon, but there's no proof that it does anything different for you than cold water would.

Hot Water Benefits

If consumed in large quantities throughout the day, water can even help you achieve your weight loss goals. A small study of 50 participants that was published in the July-December 2014 issue of the Journal of Natural Science, Biology and Medicine found that drinking 1.5 liters more than your typical recommended daily intake of water could help suppress your appetite and reduce water retention, thus leading to weight loss.

Don't expect water to be a miracle cure, and talk to your doctor before you make any major changes to your health routine. But know that water can help keep your body in optimal conditions for losing weight.

In addition to weight loss benefits, water plays a role in keeping your skin clear and healthy. When your skin is hydrated, you'll experience less acne, dryness and other uncomfortable symptoms of water loss.

Though water is often overlooked as a solution for weight loss or breakouts, think of it as one crucial component of your daily health routine. And whether you choose to drink hot water or cold, you are doing your body a favor by keeping it hydrated throughout the day. Make sure you're consuming water with every meal, as well as before and after a workout. Hydration is key to helping your body perform at its best.

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