Pharm Table Mantra #6: Avoid Iced or Carbonated Drinks
The Pharm Table kitchen follows 10 mantras based on Ayurveda, cuisines from the Blue Zones, and heritage foods of the Southwest. Our sixth mantra: Avoid iced or carbonated drinks. Cold or carbonated drinks slow digestion in the body. Strive to maintain a 98-degree environment in your gut. Instead, drink room-temperature water or hot tea.
This mantra is sometimes difficult to follow in the brutal heat of Pitta season. Room temperature drinks are easier for your body to adjust to after being active in hot temperatures, as cold drinks can shock your digestive system. As unusual as it may seem, hot drinks can actually help cool your body by helping you produce sweat.
Carbonated drinks tend to be acidic and with a few exceptions, high in processed sugars. One notable exception is kombucha or fermented tea. This drink is naturally effervescent due to the fermentation process and is rich in probiotics, which are great for the gut. Although it contains small amounts of sugar to initiate fermentation, small amounts of kombucha add billions of helpful probiotics to your gut. We recommend not drinking an entire bottle in one sitting, as tempting as it might be. Instead, drink it in small, 2 oz portions as a shot.
Topo chico or other mineral water can compromise the digestive system, but if you're desperately craving a sparkling mineral water, we strongly recommend drinking them in between meals instead of with food.
Maintaining a 98-degree environment in your gut is essential to aiding digestion, and avoiding iced and carbonated beverages can greatly help this process. Hot teas and gently heated food are perfect for stoking one's "agni", or digestive fire.