Crunching Ice?

Looking for information on what it means? Trying to find support? Want to know you’re not alone? Want to share your story? You have arrived at the right place. Crunching or Chewing Ice is a condition named Pagophagia, and is commonly caused by Vitamin or Mineral Deficiency of some kind. It is probably way more common than you think because many people that have it just think it’s a normal part of them and not any kind of Deficiency.

While I was looking online to see if other people have this problem, I stumbled across the “Ice Chewers Bulletin Board” which is really quite eye opening! Almost everything i read I could completely resonate with – it was quite a wake up for me and also a big affirmation that I’m doing the right thing as there are many more “Ice Chewers” out there than I realised. These are some of the comments I came across which I thought would be good to share.

“The first memory I have of noticing myself craving ice is about two years ago. I remember going grocery shopping and consistently thinking to myself “I want a large glass of water with lots of clear ice, and a slice of lemon”. This went on for like a month or two, then I quit buying the lemon and quit drinking the water. I would just take the water, freeze all of it. I’ve broken two molars because I was chewing so violently, and I just can’t stop. That same time when I would stop at gas stations for a drink I would just ask for giant cups of ice, and basically I would substitute most of my drinking and sometimes my eating with ice. The obsession grew out of control when I discovered that at my work, there were TWO ice machines, making slushy hospital ice. I am so addicted to the cool, jagged feeling of crushed ice going down my throat, clumps of it gathering in the corners of my mouth. Ever since then, I have gone from loving machine ice to store bought and back to just preferring to perfect the texture of the ice by making it myself with water I buy.”

“I started chewing ice when I was around 11 years old circa 1960’s! It started when I discovered how yummy freezer frost tastes! It tastes just like snow….and/or crushed ice which I adore folks!!! Yum yummy double yum!!!!! Of course this was all before they made auto defrost refrigerators and freezers!”

“Its weird because I always refused to have ice in my drink. It was a pet peeve to have it there. and then about a year ago I started loving ice.. and then the obsession grew and grew.”

“In my country it is winter right now but for me the ice chewing will never stop. I started ice chewing in 2001, it was weird really. I took a plastic tub and I placed it in the freezer for a couple of hours it was ice with lots of water inside, I took a knife cracked it and it was heaven that’s how I started chewing ice, I dont know a lot of people who have this cool behaviour, but my favourite way of eating ice is when I take plastic water bottles fill them half full with water and then let it freeze and when it is completely frozen I start banging it on the sides of my table, (I only do this when I am alone though ) I bang the Ice until it’s fluffy and white the taste is amazing the texture very soft not bad for my teeth and for my taste buds heaven. Ok I am drooling let me go get my fix at my work’s freezer with the small ice cubes. Check you later!!!!!”

“I think I have been eating Ice since i was about 7 or 8 years old. I am 30 now. I used to scrape the freezers then I moved up to the ice trays. From there I started making the ice real thin in the ice trays. Now I am on deep freezers, cookie company, and Sonic Ice. If the ice is not white I wont eat it. I even have the times down to a T when all the Sonic’s in Chattanooga and even the one in Marietta GA. ice machine is putting out the GOOD ice.”

“I have been chewing ice for as long as I can remember. As a kid when all the other kids were having kool-aid I was having cups of ice! I am going to be 39 in June. One of my sisters also loves Ice. My neice also loves to chew ice. I am from a very large family I have 8 younger siblings and tons of neices and nephews. We are the only three ice chewers in the family.A few years ago my dentist told me that chewing ice cubes was equivalent to chewing on rocks – YIKES! So I now own several ice shavers – so I can have my ice and chew it too! I got one for my neice and my sister got one for herself.I live in New England and eat ice year round – cold weather or not! I eat several large glasses a day. I use Poland Spring bottled water to make the molds for my ice. The bottles are 1PT. 0.9 FL OZ in size. At the end of the day I have had 8 bottles of water frozen into ice.”

“My first memory is from back when refrigerator freezers were not frost-free. My father used to get a giant spoon and scrape the ice from the “ceiling” of the freezer! It would have a consistency like snow. And every now and then, my father would give a spoonful to me and my sister! When I was older and had my own apartment with fridge that wasn’t frost free, I’d “accidentally” leave the freezer door just slightly open so that more ice would accumulate in the freezer. (My mouth is drooling now at the thought of it!) Writing this crazy stuff makes me think there could be a show on TV similar to “Intervention” or something, showing the lengths that people like us go through to get good ice!!”

“Hadn’t thought of this in 50 years, but yes, my mother used to periodically defrost the freezer part of our fridge and I would eat a bunch of the the frost chunks. she would catch them in a pan and I remember taking the pan of slushy freezer chunks and eating them like popsicles. If it had been a long time since defrosting, they might have a bit of a funky taste. Somehow doesn’t sound too healthy now, but to this day I love eating crushed (or any kind) of ice.”1

I have also had my fair share of Ice Crunching adventures, I consider myself to be a serious Ice Cruncher! So much that my Counter Top Ice Machine can’t keep up with the amount of Ice I eat.

It’s a good one though, The Polar Counter Top Ice Maker, £149.94 in the UK , or this similar one in the States, $94.99 – you have to manually fill the tank, so I can always use my favorite water. While no Counter Top Ice Machine is refrigerated, this one is very well insulated, the ice melts really slowly! Luckily it uses sensors so it stops when it’s full, and makes more when it’s low. It makes 10kg of Ice per 24 hour period which is super fast. It has just enough hardness to feel like your crunching, however, it is fairly soft and really is an ice eaters dream! The longer the ice sits in the basket, the softer it gets. When the ice melts it just drains back into the water reservoir to be turned into ice again, so you don’t need a drain! Our current one has been running like a champ for almost exactly a year now. I didn’t intend to recommend an Ice machine in this post but I figure if any of you are desperate you may as well know all about what I use at the moment – however, like I said – it has trouble keeping up with me so I will be testing and reviewing something else soon – and I’ll probably pop a video and some photo’s on when I get time.

  1. Ice Chewers Bulletin Board – All about Chewing Ice • View topic – When did you start chewing ice?, Ice Chewers Bulletin Board – All about Chewing Ice,


  1. Chris Reply

    You know I never really thought of eating ice as a condition! As a kid I would eat snow or those large icicles but as I grew up I didn’t like the taste. If it’s in my cup with a drink, I will chew the ice. Never really thought why other then it’s cold and refreshing! Very interesting read!

  • admin Reply

    Hi Chris, Thanks for stopping by. I guess the problem comes when you’d rather have the Ice than the drink!!

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