We started researching this question hoping to be able to give you a clear and definitive answer. Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. The actual research behind this question is all over the place and any answers are highly nuanced. Yes, hot drinks do raise your core temperature, but in certain scenarios this can actually be counterproductive and cool you down. Here are some interesting takeaways from our research.
The Thermogenic Effect of Caffeine
Caffeine is a stimulant that has a thermogenic effect on the body. Basically, this means that caffeine stimulates our metabolism and helps raise the core temperature of the body. So, if your hot drink contains caffeine it will likely help warm your body up.
The Too Hot Effect
Interestingly enough, raising your bodies core temperature can be counterproductive when you are cold. Between the high heat of a hut mug of coffee and the thermogenic effect of the caffeine, it is possible to have your core temperature increase too fast. When this happens, it “tricks” your body into thinking that it is getting too hot and can make it start to work on cooling you down. So if you’re feeling cold and shivery, you may want to sip that mug slowly.
The Psychological Impact of Hot Drinks
It may be in your head, but your head controls a lot of things with your body. Most everyone in the scientific world agrees that the emotional/psychological impact of a warm drink cannot be ignored around this question of whether a hot drink warms you up. The comfort provided by a warm mug in your hand and sipping on a warm drink definitely will make you FEEL warmer. And feelings are powerful. They might just actually make you warmer as well.
Whatever the case, we’re a fan of a hot mug of coffee or a cozy cup of tea when we’re feeling cold. Something about it just feels “right!” When we consider all the research PLUS our own personal experience, we’re quite comfortable recommending a hot drink as a viable method of warming up when you feel cold. And when you need more coffee to make that fresh hot mug, be sure to check out our freshly-roasted, direct-sourced coffee for sale here on our website.