Most people enjoy a warm shower, especially during the winter – but can a cold shower boost your circulation? Learn about the benefits.
According to exercise physiologist Zach Carter, CSCS, cold showers may offer some benefits, but you should be cautious. Carter explains that while they may provide some potential benefits, cold showers should not be seen as a cure-all treatment. “There is a potential upside,” explains Carter. “The question is whether it’s worth the stress you put your body through in the process.”
Cold Shower Benefits
The reason why your body instinctively moves away from cold water in the shower is that your system is switching to survival mode. When cold water hits you, it creates a shock that strains your system into overdrive, increasing circulation to warm your core.
While the process does stimulate blood flow, there are better ways to improve your circulation without freezing. “Go for a 10-minute walk instead,” says Carter. “You’ll be better off.”
Another potential benefit of taking cold showers is a boost to your metabolism since your system needs the energy to keep warm. As a result, you may burn additional calories, but you shouldn’t use this as a weight-loss method. “Cold showers are not going to be your best route to weight loss,” says Carter.
According to a clinical trial in the Netherlands, taking cold showers may help make you more resistant to colds. Other researchers found that they may also help alleviate symptoms of depression, but more research is necessary.
Nevertheless, Carter cautions against focusing too much on these potential benefits. “Cold showers are not truly efficient in any of these areas,” says Carter. “You’re not getting enough for the discomfort they bring.”
Risks and Your Health
While there are potential health benefits, some people are at higher risk than others of experiencing negative side effects. For instance, if you have heart disease, cold showers may put added stress on your heart and lead to problems. Carter warns about the effects, stating that cold showers are “going to tax your heart in a way that could be dangerous.”
However, if you still want to take a cold shower, keep in mind that the benefits are from when the temperature hits 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, make sure you give your body time to adjust and that between 30 seconds and 3 minutes is the best window for these benefits.
Still, if you’re looking to improve your health, there are better ways to do it without putting your body through a cold shower. For example, you can take a supplement like Circulation Boost to promote your circulation and blood pressure health.
It also comes in a berry flavor, so not only will you not have to freeze every time you take a shower – you can enjoy a tasty supplement as well. If you’re ready to give your body and health the support they deserve, then consider taking Circulation Boost.