Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Ice ice water! Ice ice water!

You may or have not heard of it, but drinking ice water, or very cold or chilled water, can really help us to burn some extra Calories!

If you still can recall Physics in secondary school, a Calorie is a unit of energy. Scientifically, it is the amount of energy, or heat, taken to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram (kg) of water 1 degree Celcius (°C). So, when we drink ice water, our body has to heat up the temperate of the ice water to that of our body temperature. In other words, our body has to raise the temperature of the ice water, thus burning calories. If you have doubt, try to drink some ice water and then test the temperature of your urine. Does your urine feel cold or warm?

Now, let’s see how much calories can be burnt when we drink ice water:

  • Assume the temperature of ice water at 0°C.
  • Our body temperature is estimated at 37°C.
  • A standard mug or glass holds approximately 250 millilitres (ml), or grams (g), of water.
  • 250 g of water = 0.25 kg of water.
  • It takes 1 Calorie to raise 1 kg of water 1°C.

Therefore, to raise 0.25 kg of the ice water from 0°C to 37°C, our body burns 0.25 x 37 = 9.25 Calories!

So, if we drink 8 glasses of ice water a day, which is equivalent to 8 glasses x 250 ml per glass = 2,000 ml = 2 litres = 2 kg of ice water, our body burns 2 x 37 = 74 Calories a day. This figure is actually not very impressive and significant, as it doesn’t even burn off the caloric intake of a tin can of Coca-Cola (143 Calories). Nevertheless, this small effort can contribute a little to enhance our daily caloric burning process. If one day we can burn 74 Calories extra, then that will be 518 Calories extra a week, and 2,220 Calories extra a month.

In a nutshell:

While we definitely shouldn't depend on ice water consumption alone to replace exercise or healthy diets, drinking cold water instead of warm water does burn extra Calories. Take it as an add-on process, not a whole process by itself.


jeandesign said...

By my mum & oriental’s teaching, drinking ice water is no suitable for ladies. ( I dun know for guys is ok or not?) From my knowledge, drinking more ice water also not good for kidney & blood circulation, so I not agree to use this way burn our calories.
And if i want to know if drinking a lot of ice water can help me lose weight, or keep weight off, this "yes" needs to be qualified with some calculations.
From my research,…
5 kind person is not suitable to drink ice water.
1. Baby
2. Old man
3. Human who coronary heart disease
4. Human who got gastritis & digestive system disease
5. Someone who just during a hard exercise

|| Eugene Lim || said...

Noted on your feedback on the topic. Please note that the best way to burn more calories is through exercise. Enjoy your workout! :-)