Ice baths have become the latest and greatest trend in the fitness and wellness world. We often hear about the benefits of cold exposure for muscle recovery but in reality, it does a lot more for us than we think!
Below are a few great ways you can incorporate cold exposure into your training and life to improve your health and overall performance.
4 BENEFITS OF ICE BATHS
If you have done an ice bath recently, you know that they are tough… really tough. But the more you do them, the easier they become. This is part of your training and nervous system resilience building. It encourages you to activate a positive mindset especially when your body is under voluntary stress. It forces you to become present, unify your willpower and put in the hard work – which at the end results in a release of dopamine and natural dosage of courage.
2. BUILD BROWN FAT + INCREASE YOUR METABOLISM
Ice baths can also improve metabolism and accelerate weight loss. A study on the human metabolism found that cold exposure helps white fat act more like brown fat. Brown fat is the “good fat” that helps the body create heat (newborns have lots of brown fat). That means cold therapy helps white fat begin to burn more readily. Additionally, brown fat gain is associated with better insulin sensitivity.
3. IMPROVE IMMUNE SYSTEM, CELL LONGEVITY & INFLAMMATION
If longevity and overall wellness is your main goal, cold exposure and ice baths are great to add into your program. It’s long been proven that cold therapy has some serious benefits for your immune system by increasing production of infection and disease-fighting immune cells. In a Dutch study, researchers tested whether people could voluntarily influence their own immune response by practicing meditation, deep breathing, and cold water immersion techniques. The results were positive.
4. FOR INCREASED STRENGTH & SPORTS PERFORMANCE
Neuroscientist Dr Andrew Huberman, has recently come out with new research that demonstrates the impact of cold exposure for strength and recovery. He describes why and how proper cooling of certain areas of our body with specific protocols can allow people to perform 200-600% more volume and repetitions of resistance exercises at the same weight loads, or to run, cycle or swim significantly further.