Benefits of Cold and Hot Water Therapy

Alison Tehan Nutrition / anxiety  / Benefits of Cold and Hot Water Therapy
cold water therapy

Benefits of Cold and Hot Water Therapy

Are you experiencing inflammation in your body, high blood sugar or carrying excess weight ? While this is not about nutrition, this is definitely something you want to read and understand as it is another tool in your kit for supporting your health that is simple and free and could change your life.

When we expose our bodies to the stress of cold or heat, It’s called “hometic stress,” but it’s actually a good thing. This type of stress, which includes activities like taking cold showers or enjoying heat exposure, works wonders for our health. Science calls this process “hormesis,” and it’s like a secret superpower that helps us thrive.

I’m sure you’ve noticed the recent craze around ice baths and cold plunges. I’ve delved into the science behind it, and trust me, the benefits are amazing and why I wanted to share this with you. If you incorporate these therapies regularly into your routine, you might just love the amazing rewards they bring.

With cold therapy it can involve taking cold showers or bravely plunging into ice baths or just cold water. It’s not just a shivery experience, but a powerful support for your immune system. By subjecting yourself to cold, you activate your body’s natural defence mechanisms, like increasing the production of white blood cells and activity the lymph system. Other benefits include

  • Increased calorie burning by brown fat and muscle activation
  • Burning white fat and glucose leading to lower insulin production
  • Increased brown fat activation
  • Better sleep
  • Lower cortisol levels

Heat therapy includes hanging out in a cozy sauna or a relaxing steam room. Heat therapy is all about finding your Zen and reducing stress, which in turn works wonders for your immune system. And the benefits don’t stop there. Indulging in heat exposure increases the production of nitric oxide, increases your cardiovascular fitness, makes your blood vessels more elastic with the help of those amazing endothelial cells, and even enhances their ability to dilate. It’s like a soothing symphony for your body and mind.

So, how much do you need to do to feel the benefits? Well, it’s all about finding what works for you because there are still benefits for just doing it at a minimum and building up to what you are comfortable with. But the science has shown that a minimum of 11 minutes per week for cold therapy and at least 57 minutes per week for hot therapy. Of course, feel free to adjust these recommendations based on your own tolerance levels and preferences. It’s your journey to wellness, after all.

I have been experimenting with cold therapy since the beginning of this year and it has definitely become more of a challenge in the cooler months, but I am determined to continue because I do feel the benefits of cold water and I do love the challenge.  If you give it a try let me know how you go at, Id love to hear what you think.

Embrace the chill, bask in the heat, and let your body and mind thrive.