Cold Showers: Change Your Life and Revolutionize Your Morning Routine
We all have that cousin's friend's great uncle who lived to 108 and swore that the key to longevity was taking cold showers - but is there any real merit in the idea of cold showers being good for health? Studies show that it is much more than an old wives tale, and turning down the temperature dial every morning can have many health benefits.
Immune System Booster
The main benefits of taking cold showers stem come from your body's attempt to warm itself up from the cold water. First, this reaction revs up your immune system, increasing the number of two different types of white blood cells - monocytes and lymphocytes - that work to clear away toxins and pathogens. As your body works to warm up, it also gives your metabolism a kick, which not only means your body can burn fat more efficiently, but you can also get an added energy boost in the morning (as if that chilly water wasn't going to wake you up)!
Cold also causes your arteries to constrict, which means blood flows at a higher pressure and rushes to warm your vital organs. This improved circulation can help with hypertension, vericose veins, and overall cardiovascular health. That blood is also carrying lots of oxygen as the temperature shock causes you to take deeper breaths. And the improved circulation doesn't stop with your blood - cold water also helps circulate lymph as your muscles contract in response to the temperature, helping your body rid itself of toxins and waste more efficiently. Improved circulation comes with another great benefit: your body can better regulate its temperature. So if you're wondering why you're always sweating or have icy feet and hands while everyone else is comfortable, cold showers might help you out!
Healthy Hair Benefits
Many of us also know that hot water strips hair and skin of its natural moisture and can cause dryness, or an opposite reaction of overproduction of oil. Cold showers help maintain the moisture in hair and skin while also causing pores to close, which can help prevent acne.
Ready to try it yourself?
If you're feeling strong and a little cocky, you can jump right into it - turn the shower to cold (it doesn't need to be ice cold, just cold) and go get em! If you feel like maybe you need to ease into it, you can start with the water warm, lather up, then turn the water gradually as hot as you can stand, then cold to the point that it's slightly shocking. Rinse off your body and hair with the cold water and try to relax. You can work your way up, but the goal is to eventually spend about two minutes in the cold before hopping out. Go out and kick today in the butt!