Drink Up for a Better Voice.

by Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. on November 25, 2011

Cold weather coming can mean more stuffy, heated offices and homes for most of us.  This can set you up for a dry throat.  Here’s a post from a while back that can help keep your throat healthy.

Water is the magic elixir for your voice!  Actually, any unsweetened, nonalcoholic fluid counts.  Moisture in the form of mucus cushions the vocal folds (vocal cords) as they open and close for speech.  It works much like oil in a car to protect this delicate tissue.

But the sad fact is, most of us pay more attention to watering our lawns and houseplants than we do our bodies.  To calculate how much water to drink I use the ratio devised by the International Sportsmedicine Institute. Their formula has been used for over three decades.  You need one-half ounce of water per pound of body weight. Simply divide your body weight by one-half to gauge your daily water needs.  About.com:  Nutrition offers a calculator that  takes into account other factors when figuring out how much to drink.  This is especially helpful if you live in a dry climate or have other factors that affect your hydration.  These guidelines on healthy adults who exercise.  If you have any medical conditions that might be affected by a potassium-sodium imbalance you should get your doctor’s advice on fluid consumption.

Drinking enough water is one of the easiest and best ways to keep your throat healthy.  A healthy throat will give you the best voice so get yourself a stadium cup or water bottle and drink up.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

av321 March 23, 2010 at 7:33 pm

Is it better to drink warm water or cool water right before voicing? I’ve heard some singers say they prefer to drink room temperature water before performing, but does temperature make a difference? Thanks for the tips! This is a great site!

Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. March 24, 2010 at 3:35 pm

Thanks for your question. I have never felt that cool water or even ice water is particularly bad for my voice, but I’ve had clients who disagree. Some say that cold water tends to make their throat feel tight. If you feel that is the case with you, stick to room temperature water. But keep the water coming in. That’s one of the best ways to protect your voice!

james April 12, 2010 at 10:13 am

is it true that boiled ginger and lemon drink can give a better voice? thanks

Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. April 12, 2010 at 6:22 pm

I haven’t heard of using the combination of ginger and lemon drink. The thing to remember about any drinks is that they don’t reach the vocal cords (folds). If they did, you would get choked and cough. When we drink liquids they only sooth the back of the throat and then head down to the stomach via the esophagus. The trachea is the tube that goes to the lungs. Any fluid that gets in there causes us trouble.

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