Taking a dip in cold water may be just the thing if you are looking to reduce the amount of unhealthy body fat that you have.
Cold water exposure might also lower your risk for certain conditions such as diabetes. It seems to increase the amount of a hormone called “adiponectin” that is made by adipose tissue. Adiponectin plays an important part in preventing insulin resistance, a state where the muscles, fat, and Liver becomes less responsive to insulin.
Several types of beneficial effects have previously been proposed for cold water exposure, such as:
1. Boosting the immune system
2. Giving a natural high
3. Improving circulation
4. Increasing libido
5. Burning calories
6. Reducing stress
7. Making new friends
8. Relieving depression
9. Jump-starting the metabolism
10. Improving cardiovascular health
11. Reducing pain and inflammation
Our investigation shows that there is increasing evidence that many of these suggestions may be correct, especially regarding the potential preventative health effects on the immune system, potential prophylactic effects on the cardiovascular system, prophylaxis against insulin resistance, and improved insulin sensitivity and mental health.
However, the speculated effects of giving a natural high, increasing libido, and reducing depression don’t appear to be supported by the evidence.
If you find the idea of cold water exposure to be intriguing, the best advice is first to be aware of the possible negative effects and then to start gradually, maybe with other people who are already experienced with it. He also suggests reading up on the topic.
Cold water exposure is not easy, and many people will not like it. He suggests that a cold-shower challenge is a good way to see how well you can handle it before diving in deeper.
For one week, during your daily shower, decrease the water temperature as low as it will go with still decent water flow for 15 seconds. Stay under the water, including your head and neck and as much of your body as possible. Then turn the water up again to warm yourself. Then, start increasing your time under the cold water by 15-second increments each week for a total of four weeks.
You should check in with yourself after each shower to see how you are feeling over the next few hours.
People are often in a better mood and seem to have more energy. Others may hate it and not be happy. But this is a good test to see if you may like cold exposures.
It’s a good idea to speak with a healthcare professional before you begin, especially if you have heart disease or have had a heart attack. If a person is generally healthy and somewhat active, it is as safe to try this as it is to start an exercise program.