Unless you are a sportsman or a general fitness enthusiast or are originally from a hot and dry country, you probably are not a big fan of a cold shower. Unfortunately for it, the cold shower doesn’t have a public relations team that is half as effective as its hot cousin. But that is not to say that it isn’t as effective as the hot shower. In fact, a cold shower actually has a wide range of health benefits that we could enjoy only if we cared to step out of our comfort zones and step under cold water!
History is replete with people advocating the powers of a cold shower. The Finns have been jumping into freezing water and doing what they call the ‘ice hole swimming’ since the first century. The Spartans were believed to consider hot water showers a thing for the weak-hearted only and our very own home-grown sleuth Bond has always finished off his piping hot shower by turning the water chilly for the last few minutes. Unless you suffer from some serious medical conditions like asthma or are prone to the chills and sniffs more often than normal, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be turning the shower knob the other way and enjoying an Arctic blast.
Here are a few perks one stands to enjoy –
- Stress-buster – Think a warm soak is the only way to beat stress? Sure, if you want to get out of the tub and head straight to the bed. If beating stress and going on with the day is what you intend to do, go the Bond way and finish off your hot bathing experience by standing under the cold shower for a few minutes. Rejuvenation guaranteed, stress goes out of the drain. If stress has led to high BP, a cold shower can considerably bring that down too.
- Anti-depressant – A cold shower helps the body release endorphins (also called the feel-good hormones) into the blood stream. When this reaches the brain, the mood gets automatically lifted.
- Glowing skin and hair – Again, the hot and cold therapy works wonders, both for dazzling hair and skin. Celebrities like Elizabeth Hurley are known to swear by cold showers, attributing their stunning looks to standing under cold water every day, without fail.
- Improved blood flow – When you stand under the steady stream of cold water trickling out of your shower, vasoconstriction takes place. In other words, the arteries and the veins get tightened which in turn makes blood flow at higher pressure. This results in improved blood circulation which again helps the body flush out its toxins.