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It's Official - Drinking Hot Tea Is Better For Cooling You Down Than Necking Pints

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It's Official - Drinking Hot Tea Is Better For Cooling You Down Than Necking Pints

We feel pretty bad bringing this news to you today, what with the sun and all. But we very much doubt it'll have you running away from the beer garden in pursuit of a nice warm brew.

Everyone's heard it when they're complaining of being too warm - someone always chirps up with 'have a hot drink, it'll cool you down'.

Research suggests that this person isn't a complete imbecile after all. Who would have guessed?



If you're one of those people who would - logically, you'd think - rather have a ice cream or a nice cold beer on a sunny day, it might be time to change your ways.

Because scientists say a hot drink will cool you down more than an ice-cold beverage - they've clearly never sat on a wooden bench drinking a strawberry and lime cider when we're having an absolute scorcher, have they? Otherwise they'd know that there's nothing more refreshing.

But let's hear them out.

We feel cooler just looking at this. Credit: PA
We feel cooler just looking at this. Credit: PA

According to Professor Peter McNaughton, a neuroscientist at the University of Cambridge, consuming hot beverages such as tea or hot water will raise your core body temperature. And this makes you to sweat at an increased rate.

Deutsche Welle reported that nerves in our mouths and upper digestive tract respond to the heat of the beverage, stimulating the brain to produce more sweat. And as it evaporates, the sweat effectively acts as a coolant.

Water evaporates very quickly from the skin. And when water evaporates, McNaughton says 'that cools you down'.


There's a catch though - and just when we were starting to believe it was an actual thing.

Dr Christopher Gordon, an expert in human thermoregulation at the University of Sydney, said: "Sweating will start, or increase, if the person is already hot.

"Whilst people often feel hot during the consumption of the hot drink they will feel cooler once they are sweating."


So sweat your back out for half an hour and then you'll start to feel the benefits?

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

As the majority will probably know, we have sweat glands all over. What might be less known is that there are more in areas such as the hands, lower leg region and head - fellow sweaty upper lip sufferers will feel the pain.

As people sweat, they often feel cooler when they notice the change in skin temperature in the face.


It might be pretty gross but sweating is vital for our bodies to function. Professor McNaughton said: "If you didn't sweat in a hot environment, then your central temperature would rise and it only takes a rise of a couple of degrees for that to cause brain damage and death."

So, yeah, sweating is slightly important to us all. Not as important as ensuring you have a big bag of cans chilling in the paddling pool though.

Us Brits will opt for a cool, refreshing drink on a hot day but drinking or eating too much of anything extremely cold can cause blood vessels to tighten, making you feel much hotter.

"Cool drinks only cool you momentarily," says McNaughton, "because the volume of the cold drink is relatively small when compared to your body, so the cooling effect gets diluted quite quickly."

He adds: "There is a limit as to how much you can drink because this will overload your kidneys, so you certainly shouldn't drink too much."

Don't drink too much you say?

So, we've told you once and we'll tell you again, put the beers down and have a nice brew. Or just carry on pouring delicious, ice-cold beer down your throat. Hey, you do you, mate.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Interesting, Drinks, Hot Drinks, ice cream, Community, Sun

Rebecca Shepherd
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