I have been taking a cold shower daily since I was in high school. Our coach told us that it would "make us tough" , so I did it. Obviously he didn't have any data or research to back up his claims, but I did notice that it made me feel stimulated, so I persisted. In the many years since then I have found a lot evidence for the value of cold water therapy. Many cultures use it including Navajo culture. Below is a good article the lists some benefits. Try it for yourself!
Taking a cold shower early in morning or to end the day commonly comes challenging to many people as most have been used to warm water to relax the body.
But cool showers actually offer benefits to the body and could help improve health in a dozen ways, from relaxing the mind to improving the skin and to reducing fats.
Here are 12 reasons to embrace the cold to enjoy the benefits of a cool shower:
1. Promotes fat loss
Yes, simply pouring ice cold water to the body can help cut weight. Cool showers activate brown fat, which generates heat around the body, according to Menprovement.
The increased activity of the “good fat” burns calories to keep the body warm. Research showed that cold temperatures can boost brown fat by 15 times higher than the normal amount.
2. Improves immunity
A study in England showed that regular cold showers trigger an increase in the metabolic speed rate and the amount of white blood cells in the body, which then help fight diseases.
3. Gives better circulation
An improved circulation means better overall cardiovascular health. Among the benefits of taking cold showers is a good blood flow. It allows the blood to rush down to organs to stay warm.
4. Drains lymphatic system
Cold showers help boost the activity of the lymphatic system, which works to carry out waste from cells. This then reduces the risk of infections.
5. Promotes emotional resilience
A study showed that cold showers can help develop a nervous system that is resilient to stress. The effort alone serves as a small form of oxidative stress, which the body would adapt overtime and teach the brain to prepare for stress.
6. Lowers stress
As the brain learns how to deal with stressful situations, cold showers could also help cut the levels of uric acid and boost glutathione in the blood, which help reduce stress.
7. Lowers chances of depression
Cold showers have been found to relieve symptoms of depression by stimulating “the blue spot” on the brain that releases noradrenaline, a chemical which plays a role in alleviating depression.
8. Increases testosterone levels
For men, even a small amount of heat can affect the DNA, RNA and protein synthesis in the testes. One study found that 15 minutes of increased heat in rat testes led to a significant decrease in testosterone. Which then suggested that cold temperatures could reverse the effect.
9. Improves fertility
Cold showers have been found to boost sperm count and increase fertility. Researchers said that it could also reverse the effects of hot baths that have been considered to be an effective male contraceptive.
In a previous experiment, men who took a half hour of hot bath every other day for three weeks became infertile for six months.
10. Promotes faster muscle recovery
A 2009 study showed that an ice bath after intense training improves circulation and helps remove some lactic acid, which could speed up the body’s recovery.
11. Enhances skin and hair
The benefits of taking a cold shower not only give better health, but also make people look better. Ice cold water can help reduce the risk of losing too many natural oils on the skin and hair, according to dermatologist Jessica Krant.
It also helps make the hair appear shiny and strengthens their grip to the scalp.
12. Ensures better sleep at night
A 10-minute ice bath could help people get incredible sleep at night, according to a book titled “The Four Hour Body.” The book states that taking a cold shower gives elephant tranquilizer-like effect that will put you straight to bed.