Giải tríSức Khỏe

Does cold shower really make you healthier, live longer or can cause sudden death? The answer is surprising

Dutch national extreme sports athlete Wim Hof ​​(also known as the ice man) – who won the Guinness World Record for swimming under the ice, says that “a cold shower every day keeps the doctor away”. by reducing stress and increasing energy.

There haven’t been many studies looking at the benefits of cold showers, so the literature on this issue is rather limited. The largest study of 3,000 participants was conducted in the Netherlands and found that those who took a cold shower (and then a warm bath) for 30 or 60, 90 seconds a month were 29% less likely to miss work because of illness than those who took a cold shower. for those who only take a warm bath. Interestingly, the duration of cold showers did not affect the likelihood of getting sick.

tam bang 1651662541 607 width780height520

Athlete Wim Hof ​​says that taking a cold shower makes him stronger physically and mentally.

The reason why cold showers can keep many people from getting sick is still unclear. Some studies suggest that it boosts the immune system. A Czech study found that soaking in cold water (14 degrees Celsius for an hour) three times a week for six weeks could boost the immunity of “young male athletes” – the only group tested. However, further studies are needed to truly understand this effect on the immune system.

In a BBC reality show, athlete Hof said that cold water activates the cardiovascular system and thus improves its function. “We go to the gym to work out our muscles, but inside our bodies there are millions of tiny muscles in the cardiovascular system – and we can train them by simply taking a cold shower,” he says. speak.

Taking a cold shower increases your heart rate and blood pressure. It’s evidence that cold water activates the sympathetic nervous system – the part that governs the “fight or flight” response (an automatic physiological response that occurs when we are faced with a perceived event). dangerous, stressful or scary).

tam lanh 1651662571 768 width716height449

Taking a cold shower can make you feel “a bit shocked”.

Taking a cold shower can be a little shocking. As mentioned above, it stimulates the fight-or-flight response – increasing heart rate and blood pressure. When this response is triggered, such as during a cold shower, you get an increase in the hormone noradrenaline. This can be the cause of increased heart rate and blood pressure when people soak in cold water.

Soaking in cold water has also been shown to improve blood circulation. When exposed to cold water, blood vessels under the skin constrict, reducing blood circulation. When you stop taking a cold shower, the body warms itself up, so there’s an increase in blood circulation as blood vessels increase in size due to dilation. One study that looked at cold water immersion after exercise found that, after 4 weeks, blood flow to and from the muscles improved.

In the BBC show, Hof encourages players to increase the amount of time they shower each day. However, the only study that explored this interval was the one from the Netherlands, and they found that the length of the bath didn’t matter much. So even if you take a cold shower for 15 seconds at 12 degrees Celsius, it is enough to get health benefits.

Caution is necessary

Cold showers can cause mild shock. As it increases heart rate and blood pressure, it can also have a negative effect on people with heart disease because it can lead to a heart attack or irregular heartbeat. If a person has plaque (or fatty deposits) in their arteries, an increased heart rate could be the potential cause of plaques to fall off and block arteries, leading to a heart attack.

tam lanh1 1651662602 179 width780height458

People with cardiovascular disease need to be careful when bathing in cold water.

And, according to Mike Tipton, an expert in human physiology at the University of Portsmouth (UK), cold water immersion can be linked to rapid breathing. But there is also a “diving reflex” when submerged in cold water, when the body automatically reduces heart rate and instinctively stops breathing (the opposite of the “fight or flight” response). However, this risk is higher with immersion in cold water, such as swimming outdoors, than with cold showers alone.

Cold showers are also said to have mental benefits. Research in the Netherlands shows that taking cold showers does not improve anxiety, but can reduce symptoms of depression. The reason given is that people have dense cold receptors in their skin and cold showers activate them, and send large amounts of electrical impulses to the brain – possibly producing an antidepressant effect.

There is also research in older people showing that splashing cold water on the face and neck also provides temporary improvements in brain function, including improvements in memory and attention. So, athlete Hof’s claim that “a cold shower every day keeps the doctor away” is scientifically proven. However, the health benefits and valid reasons still need to be confirmed. People with cardiovascular disease need to be careful when applying this method.

You are reading the article Does cold shower really make you healthier, live longer or can cause sudden death? The answer is surprising
at – Source: – Read the original article here

Back to top button