What Would Happen If You Drank Liquid Nitrogen?
What if you swallowed liquid Nitrogen? Liquid nitrogen is great for making ice cream and breathing smoke like a dragon But what if you drank an entire glass of pure liquid nitrogen? Is it dangerous? Could it cause your body harm? First, what is liquid nitrogen? As the name implies, it’s the liquid form of nitrogen gas, a colorless, odorless gas
That makes up about 78% of our atmosphere. Nitrogen turns into a liquid at -320 degrees Fahrenheit, much much colder than the 32 degrees Fahrenheit of your glass of ice water! Being so cold, there’s lots of interesting things you can do with liquid nitrogen, like add a fun foggy effect to drinks or flash freezing foods But while this stuff may look fun, liquid nitrogen is EXTREMELY dangerous if not handled
Correctly. Especially if it is ingested. First what happens is that the majority of liquid nitrogen evaporates in your throat and turns into gas. There’s a tiny flap in your esophagus called the epiglottis that is there to stop gas from escaping out of your stomach.
This traps the cold nitrogen gas causing it to expand, which can cause burns and internal rupturing. Things only get worse as the liquid nitrogen travels down into the stomach. As happened to a young woman in the United Kingdom, the extreme cold of the liquid nitrogen can burn holes in your stomach and destroy the stomach lining. The damage to hers was bad that her entire stomach needed to be removed!
If not treated immediately, this damage to the stomach and esophagus could even lead to death! So while liquid nitrogen might be useful for cooking and fun for party tricks, please do not drink it, because it won’t be fun for very long.