Two thirds of us don’t think we’re drinking enough liquids - and we don’t believe that hot drinks cool us down.

  • One in five think drinking hot drinks to cool down is an old wives tale – but is it?

  • People in Belfast and Birmingham are least likely to stay hydrated – whilst those in Edinburgh and Sheffield top the list for keeping their thirst quenched.

We’ve probably all been told the same thing by our parents and grandparents – hot drinks cool you down on a warm day.

But is it true?

Vacuum flask pioneers Thermos® asked the UK whether they agreed that hot drinks made them feel cooler in hot weather and only one in five said they did (20%). Those aged 35 and over were more likely to agree than those under.

That doesn’t stop us enjoying a cuppa on a hot day though. In Thermos UK’s survey of over 1,000 people, fewer than a third (30%) said they drink less hot drinks in the summer than they would in the winter. Just one in five (20%) said they only enjoy cold drinks in summer.

But scientifically, is there truth in the idea that hot drinks can cool you down, or is it an ‘old wives tale’? Actually, it’s true! A study in 2012 revealed that having a hot drink can make you sweat more, and as long as that sweat can evaporate, that can actually make you feel cooler*. So as long as it’s not too hot and humid, and you’re not wearing too many clothes to enable the sweat to disperse, having a brew may well leave you feeling more refreshed than a cold drink.

Whether hot or cold beverages are the preferred option, the Thermos research revealed that only 35% of us think we drink enough liquids in the summer to stay hydrated. Only one in four (23%) take drinks with us when out and about in the summer – with women more likely to than men (27% vs 18%). Those aged 35-44 years old are least likely to at 17%.

When broken down into the regions most or least likely to stay hydrated the top five and bottom five were revealed to be: 

Most hydrated cities:

  1. Edinburgh (57% think they drink enough in the Summer)
  2. Sheffield (45%)
  3. Bristol (44%)
  4. Liverpool (41%)
  5. Newcastle (40%)

Most dehydrated cities:

  1. Belfast (Only 8% think they drink enough in the Summer)
  2. Birmingham (24%)
  3. Leeds (26%)
  4. Norwich (31%)
  5. Manchester (33%)