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Taking a Cold Shower Everyday Can Transform Your Health

Man photographed as he takes a cold shower in his home
Source: Freepik

While many shiver at the thought of jumping into a cold shower first thing in the morning or after work, it could be one of the best ways to transform your health for the better, according to health experts.

Cold plunges and ice baths, made famous by the Iceman Wim Hof, have become a symbol of vitality in recent years. Now scientists are beginning to postulate that cold showers on a regular basis may be just as beneficial.

According to Healthline, the benefits of cold showers include increased circulation, benefits for hair and skin, and may even reduce muscle soreness and inflammation, amongst a host of other things.

Dr. Michael Daignault, a medical contributor to USA Today, claims, “Multiple research studies show that cold exposure is a ‘good stressor’ that floods our brains and bodies with adrenaline and dopamine, increasing our energy and focus and elevating our mood.”

Inspired by Dr Daignault’s theory, David Oliver, a writer for USA Today, decided to test out these theories by having a cold shower once a day for an entire year, hoping to experience some of the benefits associated with cold water himself.

In a fairly Win Hof approach, David began to think the cold showers may help him breathe deeper and relax, which could even reduce stress.

“Instead of fighting our body’s natural reflex to breathe like this, lean into it and focus on quality breathing,” wrote Daignault. “Over time, aim for progressively colder water and a longer time. One to three minutes daily is ideal,” David wrote.

As David continued to have a cold shower each morning, he admitted, “Some mornings, I probably rushed that one minute.” However, he believes that if nothing else, he felt his heart rate drop “like a piece of music.”

“Health benefits have evidently cropped up for me elsewhere (though, like many, I could certainly improve my diet), so who’s to say exactly what I’ve been getting out of the cold showers in this regard,” wrote David.

One figure who’s spoken extensively on the possible benefits of cold showers is Andrew Huberman, Professor of Neurobiology and Ophthalmology at Stanford Medicine, who has become somewhat of a social media icon in recent years.

According to Huberman, 11 minutes of cold showers per week, which comes from two to four sessions, is the ideal sweet spot. “For deliberate cold exposure, *it doesn’t matter how you get cold as long as it’s uncomfortable but safe* (temp varies by person),” Huberman wrote on X.

However, Huberman admits that most of the studies carried out on cold water exposure were done on participants submerged to the neck. Huberman wrote, “Most studies were done with submersion in water to the neck, limbs, feet & hands in. Showers & layer shedding fine too but not much science there.”

After his extensive period of cold showers, David admits that he plans to continue the cold water exposure in 2024. He wrote, “If anything, it makes me take stock of myself in a given moment. I stop thinking about what I have to accomplish that day. Stop worrying about what’s going to happen next week. Stop stressing about what the next month will hold.”


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