Taking a cold shower may be unpleasant, but some possible health benefits are associated with this practice. Taking a shower that is cooler than 70 degrees Fahrenheit is considered a cold shower. Water therapy (hydrotherapy) has been used for hundreds of years as a way to stimulate the body to adjust to harsher conditions and be more resilient in times of stress.
Cold showers are not used as the main treatment method for any health issues, but they can offer alleviation of symptoms and boost your overall health.
Here are some of the benefits of taking cold showers.
Taking 5-minute cold showers two or three times a week is a drug-free way to treat depression. This is because the shock of the cold water is like light electroshock therapy. The cold water triggers many electrical impulses in your brain that heighten your levels of awareness, energy, and mental clarity. In addition to electrical impulses, your brain also releases hormones called endorphins. These help you feel more optimistic and give you an overall sense of well-being.
There are two types of fat in your body: brown fat (which you are born with) and white fat (which can cause conditions such as obesity and heart disease). Having healthy levels of brown fat can help keep white fat at a healthy amount as well. Cold temperatures stimulate brown fat.
Along with exercise and a healthy diet, taking cold showers two or three times each week can speed up your metabolism, balance some hormones, and repair gastrointestinal damage.
Cold showers can be invigorating because being in water that is below your natural body temperature makes your body work a little harder to keep your core temperature from dropping. If you regularly take cold showers, this can make your circulatory system work more efficiently, and this might also improve the appearance of your skin.
Battles common illnesses and possibly cancer
Leukocytes are blood cells that are made in your bone marrow and are found in your blood and lymph nodes. These help your body fight against infection. Coldwater shocks your bloodstream and kicks leukocytes into gear. Therefore, cold showers can make you more resilient to the common cold and the flu.
It has even been suggested that cold showers may make your body more resistant to developing certain types of cancer.
If you have an upcoming surgery or other treatment that could decrease your immune system function, it may be a good idea to start taking cold showers as a way to boost your immune system.