As temperatures soar into the 90s and above this summer, the last thing you want to do is anything that makes you feel hotter, like drinking hot coffee, right? Well, turns out that notion isn’t so nuts after all.
Listen up, iced coffee drinkers: the Science of Us is reporting that hot beverages have counterintuitive cooling powers. You see, sweating is your body’s main way of cooling off. As one Canadian researcher explained, when your body senses a change in temperature, it sends signals to the brain to kick-start sweat production. Then after the sweat evaporates from your skin, your body cools down.
Now, when your stomach senses hot liquid, your body’s sweat mechanisms “overact” and you can end up feeling even cooler than before you took the first sip. Sweet! But be warned, this lovely over-cooling process won’t work if you’re already drenched in sweat. That’s because the additional sweat from drinking hot coffee would likely drip to the ground instead of doing its job—that is, evaporating. (Head to Science of Us to learn more about how drinking hot coffee on a hot day could help you feel cooler.)
So if you’re hot and drippy, reach for a cold drink. Otherwise, a steaming cup of Joe may be your new summer BFF.