It sounds freezing just thinking about it, but once you get your mindset to overcome the cold you’ll start feeling the amazing benefits of cold showers. Cold showers have been gaining popularity in recent years due to their numerous health benefits and invigorating effects. While the idea of subjecting yourself to icy water might seem daunting, the rewards may make it worth the initial discomfort. Believe me, I’ve tried! Coming from a 37 year old women who enjoys steamy HOT showers! Let’s explore the science behind cold showers and get right into the potential benefits backed by research.
Benefits of Cold Showers
- Boosts Circulation and Immune System: Cold showers are known to stimulate blood circulation, promoting overall cardiovascular health. The exposure to cold water causes blood vessels to constrict and then dilate, enhancing blood flow. This increased circulation may contribute to a stronger immune system by mobilizing immune cells throughout the body.
- Elevates Mood and Reduces Stress: Cold showers trigger the release of endorphins, often referred to as “feel-good” hormones. Additionally, the shock of cold water on the skin activates the sympathetic nervous system, leading to increased alertness and a temporary reduction in stress levels.
- Enhances Recovery for Muscles and Joints: Athletes often turn to cold water immersion as a recovery tool. Cold showers can help reduce inflammation and muscle soreness, promoting faster recovery after intense physical activities.
- Improves Skin and Hair Health: Cold water can tighten pores and cuticles, preventing dirt and oil from clogging the skin. It also promotes shiny hair by closing hair cuticles. While hot water may strip natural oils, cold water helps retain moisture, contributing to healthier skin and hair.
Incorporating cold showers into your routine might not SOUND like fun, but once you get the hang of it, they come with a plethora of health benefits. Start slowly, and make sure you are breathing throughout the process.
Here’s my personal journey with cold showers.
Since I started, I’ve noticed my hair falls out LESS in the shower, I have more energy throughout my day and overall have enhanced mood. Coming from someone who loves steamy hot showers, how did I get my self to finally take the plunge? Well I started taking cold showers right after my steam or sauna sessions (more on this in a coming blog post!) at the gym. I got to enjoy the warmth, then started cold showers at the end of my shower for the last minute. Now I use the coldest setting! It is FREEZING! I feel so refreshed and revitalized after I have to say! Short term pain for long term enjoyment! Try it out you wont regret it.
Meehan, C. F., & Tomasi, T. B. (1992). The immune system and cold water swimming. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 420(1), 105-113.
Shevchuk, N. A. (2008). Adapted cold shower as a potential treatment for depression. Medical Hypotheses, 70(5), 995-1001.
Rawlings, A. V., & Harding, C. R. (2004). Moisturization and skin barrier function. Dermatologic Therapy, 17(S1), 43-48.