Cold showers are an important part of the Wim Hof Method. Although it may seem counterintuitive, these showers are actually beneficial for both your mind and your body.
For the best benefits, incorporate cold showers into your daily routine.
As this takes strength and dedication, the advice is to gradually build up the duration and intensity. If you have no prior experience with cold showers, start with a regular shower and finish the last 30 seconds cold.
You quickly notice that you are able to tolerate the cold more and more, and eventually cold showers and even ice baths become things you look forward to (trust me….)
The known benefits of cold showers
Thousands of people from all over the world already incorporate cold showers into their daily routines. The main benefits reported by people who take cold showers regularly are listed below:
- Reduced stress levels.
Regularly taking cold showers imposes a small amount of stress on your body, which leads to a process called hardening.
This means that your nervous system gradually gets used to handling moderate levels of stress. The hardening process helps you to keep a cool head, the next time you find yourself in a stressful situation.
- Higher level of alertness.Cold showers wake your body up, inducing a higher state of alertness.The cold also stimulates you to take deeper breaths, decreasing the level of CO2 throughout the body, helping you concentrate. Cold showers thus keep you ready and focused throughout the day.
- More robust immune response.Scientific studies have found that taking a cold shower increases the amount of white blood cells in your body. These blood cells protect your body against diseases. Researchers believe that this process is related to an increased metabolic rate, which stimulates the immune response.
- Increased willpower. It takes a strong mind to endure the cold for extended periods of time. By incorporating cold showers into your daily routine, you are strengthening your willpower , which benefits many aspects of (your) daily life. Especially the first cold shower or a dip in an icebath…
- Weight loss. Research has shown that cold showers (and exposure to cold in general), in addition to increasing metabolic rate directly, stimulate the generation of brown fat. Brown fat is a specific type of fat tissue that in turn generates energy by burning calories. Cold showers, then, are an effective tool for people who are looking to lose a few pounds.
Ways to boost your immune system naturally
If you want to strengthen you immune response, besides the cold showers, there are a number of different ways to naturally boost your immune system. For example, a strong immune response is related to a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, getting enough exercise, certain vitamins, and certain hormones. Below are some tips that can help you boost your immune system in a natural manner.
- Ensure you get enough sleep
With the help of scientific research, evidence was found that well-rested people are less likely to catch an illness.
- Follow a healthy diet.
A diet that is low in processed foods and sugar is related to a healthier immune system. Maybe not easy, but we all know it’s so much better for your health! A good source of chocolate is allowed, now and then 😉
- Exercise regularly.
Exercising s considered to be an important part of a healthy lifestyle. Getting enough exercise lowers your blood pressure, balances your body weight, and improves your cardiovascular health.
- Avoid chronic stress.
Stress hormones suppress your immune system. Therefore, being under emotional stress for a prolonged period of time should be avoided. For a lot of people yoga is the perfect way to regulate their stress levels.
- Vitamin D.
Low levels of vitamin D are related to a higher susceptibility to infection and autoimmune diseases.
Our body produces vitamin D via exposure to sunlight. Supplementing vitamin D is advised in autumn and winter, when relatively little sunshine reaches our skin.
- Supply good bacteria.
Many important processes that are related to your immune system take place in your gut.
By consuming probiotic foods, you can stimulate the digestion of nutrients that support your immune system.