Cold splashes, showers, and baths apparently can be anti-inflammatory, majorly mood boosting, and all-round wonderful. When practiced on a regular basis, immersion in cold water benefits are numerous for your body’s immune, digestive circulatory, and lymphatic systems. In fact, it enhances the overall quality of your life.
Conditioning your body and your brain to accept, embrace and endure immersion in cold water may be challenging, but the cold water benefits in both the short- and long-run are really worth it.
By turning the temperature down to freezing cold at the end of your shower you will be able to activate the natural healing powers of your body, to properly support your mental and physiological state of being, and perhaps begin to simply feel happier and healthier.
So, the results can be dramatic even if you begin with a quick, cold shower.
Amazing Cold Water Benefits
- alleviate depression
- strengthen the immune system
- increase metabolism
- improve circulation
- increase hormone production
- improve male fertility
- speed up healing
- reduce body aches
- decrease chronic pain
- prevent post-workout injuries
- reduce swelling and edema
- improve kidney function
- regulate uric acid levels in your body
- regulate your autonomic nervous system
- improve sleep
- heal and tone skin
- increases alertness
- reduces hair loss
1. Boosts Happiness Levels
Cold baths and showers can be great for your mood. In fact, they can be therapy for anxiety and depression. Feeling down? Yes, when it comes to boosting your mood the cold water benefits actually run deeper than you think.
According to Peter Bongiorno ND, Lac., at the National Institutes of Health, when you apply water of different temperatures to our skin it can change your mood and physiology. He recommends to patients with depression to use brief whole-body exposure to cold water in the form of a cold shower. The best is to start a shower at a comfortable warm temperature and then slowly cool down the water to 68°F, at which point you can sustain for 2 – 3 minutes. (1)
Researchers found that cold showers can help treat depression symptoms, and if used on a routine basis, may be even more beneficial than prescription medications. This is because cold water triggers a flood of mood-boosting neurotransmitters, which make you feel happy. (2)
One study, examined how the regular winter swimming affects the mood of swimmers. The results revealed that when compared with the control group, after four months of routine swimming in cold water, swimmers felt more brisk, active, and energetic. (3)
Cold showers and baths adapt your nervous system to be more resilient to stress. Along with training you for stressful situations, cold water showers boost levels of Glutathione in your blood, and lower levels of uric acid – making you less stressed in general. (4)
So the next time you find yourself depressed or anxious, consider the cold water benefits.
Find out more about these 9 Steps to Beat Depression and Improve Your Life.
2. Eases Sore Muscles
Researchers in one study tested 360 subjects to the effectiveness of cold water on muscle soreness and recovery after running, cycling, or just working out. The results showed that cold water baths, 24 minutes long, were effective in relieving sore muscles. (5)
Maybe cold shower won’t be as effective as a fully submersing in an ice bath, but it will help remove some lactic acid and improve circulation. Try alternating between very hot and very cold water to let the blood come and go to the surface. Your muscles will thank you.
3. Stimulates Weight Loss
When practiced routinely, cold water boosts your metabolism. Not only that it forces our bodies to work harder to keep us warm, but it also affects the type of fat we produce.
One study found that cold water face immersion activates the parasympathetic nervous system. It has been to shown to relax muscles in the gastrointestinal tract, slow our heart rate, and increase gland and intestinal activity. (6)
According to this study, cold water can promote healthy brown fat. It is the good fat which our bodies generate and gets activated when we are exposed to extreme cold. Brown fat keeps us warm and helps eliminate white fat, which piles up when we consume too many calories, around our thighs and waistlines.
Here you can read more about How To Increase Metabolism Naturally
4. Improves Circulation and Immunity
Cold water also improves the circulation. It encourages the blood to surround our organs, which can then help fight some problems of the heart and skin.
According to Dr. Joseph Mercola as the body gets in contact with the cold water, in order to get the blood circulating, the arteries start more efficiently to pump blood. Therefore it is boosting our overall heart health. It also improves our immune system, lowers blood pressure, and can clear blocked arteries.
5. Cold Water Benefits Hair and Skin
Actually, cold water is one of the best natural ways to maintain your hair and skin appearance. It tightens your pores and cuticles and therefore it prevents them from getting clogged. Also by encouraging blood to rush to the surface of the skin it gives you a healthy glow.
When it comes to hair care, it makes your hair appear healthier, shinier, and stronger by flattening hair follicles and increasing their ability to grip the scalp. Remember, cold water constricts blood flow and only temporarily tightens skin.