When summer comes, we want nothing more than to cool off and keep the heat away in any way. One way to do this is by drinking something with ice.
If there are no more cold drinks in the refrigerator or freezer, then we choose to add ice and the problem is solved!
Did you know, however, that this is not a good idea? In our article today, we explain the reasons why you should avoid adding ice cubes to your drinks.
Dirty ice, contaminated drink
There are several studies that have been conducted to understand whether ice cubes, which are used so much in the summer and beyond, are harmful to health.
The results obtained are shocking: in most fast food restaurants and the hottest places, the water used to make ice cubes is full of bacteria (in quantities similar to those found in the bathrooms of the same places).
Are we comparing a public toilet to a drink bought in a restaurant of this type? Yes just like this. And the worst part is that toilets are cleaned more thoroughly than ice making machines.
The directors of these multinationals have hypothesized that this eventual discovery of the bacteria is due to a human factor.
This means that it is the employees who manipulate the ice cube maker and the ice cube makers, the same ones who clean the bathrooms, who touch the money, who clean the floors… but they don’t wash their hands!
Even if the laboratory analyzes did not reveal the presence of a serious contamination in the drinks of these premises, the bacteria content found proved to be higher than what we consider “normal”.
It must also be remembered that the problem is not the water with which ice cubes are made (which in all cases is drinkable), but the proliferation of bacteria in the machine that produces them or on the hands of those serving drinks.
Metabolization of bacteria
In most cases, the entry of these bacteria into the body through drinks is not a problem for a healthy person, but it poses a great risk for children, the elderly and other groups of people who have weak immune systems. .
Another factor to consider is trips to countries or cities where the water is not safe for drinking.
Some exotic destinations in Africa, Asia or America, for example, do not have a health safety system as would be appropriate, and water is likely to be extracted from contaminated sources such as rivers, lagoons, streams or dams.
Especially in these cases, we advise you to avoid using ice cubes, without exception. It is better to have a hot drink than to spend several days locked up in hotels suffering from diarrhea, vomiting and colic (at best).
What if I make the ice myself?
As we have already seen, there are some studies that explain what happens in restaurants and bars. Yet, maybe you never eat in these places and the ice you put in your glasses comes straight from your freezer.
What would be the problem in this case?
Practically the same as the places where you eat. Did you wash your hands before putting the water in the tray to make cubes ? And when did you put the cubes in the glass? Now you can understand why we say the situation is quite similar.
And that’s not all, because if you haven’t cleaned your refrigerator ice dispenser or cube tray well, mold has likely formed which will then get trapped in the ice, pour into the drink and eventually enter the your body.
Before pouring the water into the water container, it is important to make sure it is clean, and the same goes for your hands. When the ice cubes are ready, and before serving, wash your hands again to avoid the transfer of germs or bacteria.
If you comply with all health criteria when preparing and serving ice cubes, there will be less chance of ingesting microorganisms that are harmful to your health.
Despite this, there is another factor you need to consider when you feel like drinking a very cold drink : the irritation it causes in the throat and vocal cords.
When you arrive home on a very hot day, is the first thing you do is have a soft drink, juice or glass of very cold water with ice cubes or just taken from the refrigerator? You could then suffer from a sore throat or even dysphonia.
Cold drinks vs. hot drinks: who wins?
Another point against the use of ice cubes is the effect that the ingestion of too cold liquids has on the body (especially in the stomach).
Consuming ice or nearly frozen water with meals has been confirmed to cause indigestion. For this reason, Asians drink green tea at the dinner table instead of juice or sodas.
When we drink cold fluids, blood vessels contract, mucus production in the body increases and hydration suffers.
If, on the other hand, we drink warm water or, for example, an infusion, the intestine works better, digestion ends faster, the blood is purified and the body detoxifies itself through the kidneys.
Finally, we must remember that we drink something warm or hot when we eat.
In fact it helps to better digest the fats we are ingesting and prevents them from solidifying on the stomach walls.
We therefore recommend that you drink tea when the menu includes vegetable or animal fats (oil, dried fruit, meat, egg yolk or butter).