Poll: Do You Drink Hot Beverages to Cool Off?

By , SparkPeople Blogger
On a hot day, most people like to have a cold beverage to help cool down. However, some like to drink hot tea or other hot beverages to help cool down. Yes, you read that right, they drink hot beverages to cool down, but that seems counterintuitive, doesn't it? Joe Palca from NPR recently looked into this and spoke with neuroscientist, Peter McNaughton, to find out why you might want to drink a hot beverage on a hot day to cool off. The bottom line of what he found is that we have a lot of TRPV1 receptors on our tongue that respond to heat, so when we drink a hot beverage, our brain alerts our body to sweat, therefore cooling the body off.
Joe mentioned that he would still prefer to have ice water on a hot day rather than hot tea, and I would have to agree with him. I'm still skeptical about drinking hot beverages on a hot day and don't know if I will give that a try, but perhaps it is something that you already do or have tried. Whether it is a glass of cold water or iced tea, both of those sound a lot better to me than something like hot tea when it is scorching hot outside.

What is your favorite hot day beverage(s)? If you drink hot beverages on hot days, do you find it helps cool you down?

Do you prefer to drink hot or cold beverages to help you cool down on a hot day?

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MSLOUIE3 6/6/2017
I like iced coffee and tea but I had a great aunt who swore by warm lemon water in the summer time. Suffice it to say, I never asked for a drink when we were at her house. Report
I live in Florida. With 100 degrees or more heat here.. I'll stick to cold drinks rather than hot! Report
Drinking Coffee Or Tea its not harmful. Filter Coffee Is Good for health in Rainy seasons it will keep our body blood circulation in constant position. Report
I drink cold beverages when it is hot. Hot beverages don't cool you off. Hot beverages make you all clammy, sweaty and more uncomfortable. When it is really hot and humid, sweat doesn't evaporate. Why on earth would you drink a beverage that would intensify that feeling? Report
I drink hot because it relaxes me cold drinks have me going from hot to cold instantly which make me cold. Report
I use hot tea. I don't know if it is because I sit down to savor it thereby resting my body into cool down, or if there is some other metabolic reason that it works for me. Report
I still drink my hot mochas and coffees during the summer months. Report
Gotta have my tea hot no matter what! Report
I like my hot drinks, but when it's hot I like cold ones. Cold as in cold only!!! Never with ice. Report
I sweat like a stuck-pig as it is, so I do not need the help of a hot tea or any other hot beverage to tell my body it needs to sweat. Sounds to me like, if you have a problem sweating, then you might have a health condition that you nee to discuss with your doctor. Report
No thanks, I sweat like a pig already and don't need the help of a hot beverage to do that. Report
I sweat when I drink hot liquid on hot day. Sweating is way body cools off. I prefer to stay dry and drink ice cold water, tea, etc on hot days. I drink hot beverages on cold days to warm up. Report
I drink room temperature to cold water throughout the day, but I find that on really hot days, when the heat of the day is weraing on me, there is nothing better than a hot cup of coffee while sitting in an air conditioned room. Report
30 summers ago, I flexed at work. Worked 4-5 hours, then took an afternoon class (university was 2 miles from work), then back to work another 4-5 hours. I rode the free (but un-airconditioned) student trolley, then walked a couple of blocks to class. Usually hot and sweaty by the time I got next to class. And usually stopped by the student cafe for a cold Cola. One day in the line, with EVERYONE ordering cold drinks, an African student behind me asked, "Are you going to get a cold drink, too?" I thought he was just making conversation, lonely and far from home (and maybe flirting!). I replied, "Yes, the colder the better." He said, "If you REALLY want to cool off, have hot coffee instead. We know. In Africa, it really works. Try it." I was VERY skepical, but because he was nice and sincere, I felt obligated to try it. So, he and I were the ONLY ones getting hot coffee. He lingered a moment, while we took our first sips.
It SEEMED to work. He grinned proudly at having helped this poor soul learn an important lesson. I thanked him for the "secret" and we both went on our ways.
I have never forgotten. But never tried it again either.
With the heat wave ths summer, it is time to re-test the theory.
When I'm thirsty, I drink hot coffee or cold Coca-Cola. When I am working, I drink simple water. When I am hot, I head for shade or A/C. I don't thinking about cooling off by drinking something. Report
I live in Florida its always hot and I sweat easy so I think I will stay with cold drinks for now. Report
I only drink bottled water so it is always cold. Report
I like cold beverages too on hot days, but I do switch it out with hot tea every now and then for the reason stated above. It's been known in many hot-climate countries where people would eat spicy food and drink hot beverages to cool down. Sounds counterintuitive, but it works. Same goes for a fever. My doctor has advised not to drink or eat anything cold when you're feverish since it makes the body want to keep you warm by producing more heat. Just run a towel in tepid water and wipe yourself down. Report
I had read that people who live in the deep deserts do this. Report
I have done both and they both seem to work one way or another. But holding that cold glass up against you or a cold bottle on the back of your neck between drinks just feels good. Report
Cold is best for me. Report
Years ago a homeopathic doctor told me of the principle "like to like." If you have a burn, run warm (not cold) water on it to relieve pain. It seemed counterintuitive, but I tried this and it worked. Pain was relieved better than using ice, which is what I would have run to usually. Maybe the same thing works when you're hot; drinking a hot beverage might stimulate your body into cooling mode. Worth a try. Report
Even when I was a kid I would have a hot bowl of soup to cool myself off in the middle of the summer. My sister always looked at me like I had two heads, but I instinctively must have known that it was cooling. Report
I often have a hot cup of tea to cool down - (in the winter it is a cup of coffee (or substitute coffee to warm up and help with appetite.) I remember a LOT of years ago watching an experiment on TV. It was conducted by a Scientist who had people wired up to a computer. Those who had a hot cup of tea cooled down far better than those who had a cold beer. IF I remember correctly it was to do with the sugar in the beer that caused the beer to come second-best! Report
Funny you should have this blog just at this time. I recently completed a tough hour-long circuit training workout. I was hot and sweaty. I was offered a cup of hot coffee and I turned it down flat with this look of "are you kidding?" I told them the only drink I wanted and needed was cold water to cool me down! I was hot enough, sweating enough, that I didn't want anything hot to drink to make me even hotter and sweat any more. I was done with that! That cold water was just what I needed to cool down. No....I would never consider drinking a hot beverage to cool down! Report
If I'm really hot the only thing that works is ice water. But I do find myself drinking more coffee than tea when it's hot outside. For some reason I think of tea as a cold weather beverage and I'm used to drinking coffee when it's hot. Report
I prefer ice water or iced tea when I'm hot. In the winter I will drink ice water unless I am really cold (most of the time in the house). Then I will make tea or hot chocolate to try to warm up. Report
I do like coffee even when it is hot- decaf Report
Thanks. Report
On a radio report on this subject they also added that the sweat has to evaporate from your skin. If it is too humid to evaporate, or you sweat so much it drips you don't gain the benefit from the sweat. And even iced coffee contains caffeine which opens the blood vessels in your skin, encouraging sweat. Report
If my aim is to cool down, I absolutely go with something cold, generally iced, and mostly plain water. I do love iced tea as well. But otherwise, I do drink a lot of warm tea, usually first thing in the morning or just before bed (either to help wake me up or put me to sleep, respectively). I rarely drink coffee, but when I do, I prefer it iced as well. Report
I drink hot tea in bikram yoga. Report
I drink hot coffee and it works. When I have water it's without ice, from the tap. Plenty cold for me. How much coffee and water I drink doesn't change much with the temp outside though. Report
I usually have a cool beverage, I don't like iced, but I do remember working with a woman whose father was a doctor and he always encouraged a hot beverage to cool you off. Report
I generally go through ice like crazy in hot weather but yesterday I had a cup of coffee and was was surprised that I actually felt cooler afterwards - I thought it was just because I sat for a while to drink it. But maybe there is something to this hot drinks cool you down idea. I still expect to go through lots of ice.
I find it best to drink cool (not cold) beverages on a hot day. I always have my 2 cups of hot (not scalding) coffee in the early morning regardless of the temperature outside. My beverage of choice for the rest of the day is cool (not cold) water. Report
I don't normally drink coffee or tea, my fav drink has always been ice water. That said, Costco did a sample of a tea, that tastes better than Hobee's so I bought it. They don't carry it anymore, so for now my wintertime tea drinking is over! Report
Green Tea. I use a blend of Earl Green and Sweet Lemon Ribus( sp?) I enjoy it hot but even if I get busy and forget it I will drink it cold. Its very refreshing. I get it from my Little general store and they Use half of each. Try It Its refreshing.
Well, I drink more hot beverages in the summer, but that's only because they keep the office at work FREEZING when it gets hot out. So, I'm drinking hot beverages to warm up, even though it's 100+ degrees outside. Otherwise, I eat ice when I'm hot outside. It works better than liquid because it sits in your mouth & cools the whole face. :) Report
I said 'hot,' because the option of tepid/luke warm wasn't available. I feel hotter if I drink really cold things (which I don't care for much anyway).

I like warm water, in the morning, after exercise, before bed. And good tea? well...any time! It settles my body temp better than either extreme. Report
Cold drinks in hot weather and hot drinks in cold weather, please. Report
My mother always said the same thing... hot coffee on a hot day will help you cool off!
I drink hot liquids to cool off, but I drink cool/cold to rehydrate - probably because I can drink more cold faster than hot. Report
I have read that drinking cold products increases exercise performance by cooling the body down. Report
I tend to prefer hot drinks throughout the day -- coffee or tea -- and am not a big fan of cold drinks. If I'm boiling hot, though, I'd generally reach for cool (not cold) water. Hot drinks tend to make me warm. Report
I like Ice Water or Diet Pepsi when it is hot. God Bless You and Have a Wonderful Week. Report
Yep, I find myself craving hot drinks especially in the early mornings or afternoons, regardless of the temp! But maybe it has to do with cultures who are used to having regular tea-times even in hot climates (which my family is definitely familiar with!). Report
Don't drink coffee or tea. maybe I will try it with Hot Chocolate since I can't find postum Report
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