Just the idea of taking a cold showers makes most people shiver. But taking what is known as the “James Bond Shower”- turning the temperature down to freezing cold at the end of the shower, can provide surprising health benefits. doesn’t sound too bad right? it will sound and feel better when after you read the benefits of cold showers and actually try it yourself.
Lower Stress Levels
A study conducted in 1994 found a drastic decrease in uric acid levels (high levels of uric acid can lead to gout-a form of arthritis that is caused by an excess uric acid in the body and more often than not, the cause is our body’s ability to eliminate uric acid) during and following exposure to a cold stimulus. The study also shown an increase in gluthathione, an antioxidant that keeps all other antioxidants performing at their optimal levels.
The body’s shock reacting to the cold water actually helps us keep warm, as it’s increases our overall oxygen intake. Thus, the heart rate increase as well as the blood circulation through our entire body. This is better than coffee or a red bull in the morning! The famous Katherine Hepburn was a fan of cold showers and swore by them.
Strengthen the Immune System
Your body’s reaction to the temperature drop creates a chain reaction:Your metabolic rates increase, than the body commence a natural virus/germs-fighting defense system with a rapid release of white blood cells. Studies by Professor Vijay Kakkar, the founder of the Thrombosis Research Institute in London, show that the body ramps up immune cell production when exposed to cold water for short periods of time.
Speeds Up Muscle Soreness and Recovery
There’s a reason why athletes sit in ice baths after training and competing or why we ice injuries. It is a known fact that cold baths relieve sore muscles and speed up recovery.
Stimulates Weight Loss
Our body has two types of fat tissue—white and brown cells. White cells are responsible for love handles and the buildup of fat on the stomach and neck. Brown cells are packed with mitochondria, the energy center of cells, and can be burned for energy to keep us warm. When the body is producing brown cells at an increased level, we are more likely to reduce the build up of white cells that occur during a caloric surplus. A 2009 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that brown fat cell increased after taking a cold shower.
Research at the Department of Radiation Oncology at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine indicates that short cold showers may stimulate the brain’s “blue spot”– which is the brain’s primary source of noradrenaline — the chemical that been known to relieve depression.
Refines your Hair and Skin
While hot water dries out your skin. Cold water actually tightens your skin and constricts the blood vessels. The result is reduction in the appearance of pores and dark circles under your eyes. As for your hair, the cold water makes it appear healthier and shinier because the cold water flattens your hair follicles and allows them to better grip your scalp.
Ok so now that the benefits are clear, let’s talk about how to cold shower:
- Get into the shower and turn on the hot water.
- When you feel your body is warm enough rinse it with cold water for 15-30 seconds
- Towel up!
You’ll feel the benefits instantly and throughout the day! please share with us in the comments your experience!
*while there are many benefits to cold shower recommended by medicine, it is important to consult with a doctor to make sure you don’t have any health conditions that may worsen or triggered by taking a cold shower.