I have written about this a number of times in the past and speak to all my patients about it. It is such a common occurrence for Americans to drink cold beverages. Go to any restaurant and the first thing put on your table is a glass of ice water.

The Chinese and Tibetans have discussed the effects of cold liquids on one’s health for thousands of years. It’s very basic: the nature of cold is to contract and constrict. Drinking cold liquids causes constriction of the blood vessels and nerves in the Stomach and digestive tract creating spasm, tightness and restricted circulation. Digestion requires heat; in other words, yang or metabolic energy to digest. Cold extinguishes this heat, preventing proper digestion and assimilation of food, toxic gases and byproducts of this failed process. It also forces the body to expend additional yang/heat or metabolic energy further draining the organs from which this energy originates: Kidney yang/Adrenals. This leads to slowing of metabolism, weight gain, adrenal insufficiency, thyroid problems, etc.

A recent article discusses the danger of cold liquids during meals and an increased risk of heart attacks and cancer. You can check it out here and click on the article links at the bottom.