Nourishment Cold In

Sources: Papers On Health

If a person is in fever, and is burning with

internal heat, a little bit of ice, sucked in the mouth, gives great

relief. The relief is got in this way: the melted ice, in the form of

water, is little in bulk in proportion to the heat which is absorbed in

melting it. To absorb the same heat by means of merely cold water,

would imply a great amount of water, and an inconvenient filling of the

stomach. The heat used up in melting the small bit of ice is great, and

the amount of water exceedingly small. This gives benefit without

inconvenience; hence, to suck a bit of ice is to be much preferred in

such a case to taking a drink of cold water.

Within proper limits, beyond all question, cold is, in certain cases,

essential to nourishment. For example, in a case of thirst such as we

have noticed, the heat of the stomach extending to the mouth is drying

up all the juices that should go to secure digestion and assimilation.

The saliva is dried up, and the gastric juice equally so. Cold is

applied to the pit of the stomach (not ice, but a moderate degree of

repeated cold), and the result is, these juices begin to flow.

Nourishment is the consequence, and very clearly, in such a case, it is

the consequence of cold. In other words, it is the result of reducing

the excessive internal heat, and leaving something like the proper

degree behind.

The place which cold has in nourishing is, so to speak, negative--that

is, it is useful only in reducing overheating. But when we remember how

a frosty morning sharpens appetites and makes the cheeks glow with

ruddy health, we see that such reduction of overheat is not

infrequently required.