Know what’s the craze about taking a cold plunge and its 4 health benefits
Cold plunge or ice water bath or cold water immersion, call it anything you like, but it has become a popular thing which everyone wants to try. Whether it was because of the Ice Bucket Challenge that spread like a wildfire in the year 2014 (which was an initiative to spread awareness about ALS disease) or whether it is because of some or the other celebrity who posts about it on their social media handles.
Hollywood actress Inanna Sarkis who also owns a fitness app has been promoting the benefits of taking a cold plunge after your workout, through her Instagram stories. The famous athlete Wim Hof, who is also known as the Iceman because of his Guinness World Record for swimming under ice, might also be a trend setter of the cold plunge.
Indian actress Kalki Koechlin also experienced an ice bath a few months ago, and lasted 90 seconds and claimed it’s “worth the shock”.
What is a cold plunge and how to do it?
Cold plunge is basically a therapy for your mind and body which involves you having to immerse your body in a bathtub which is filled with cold water (3 to 4 degree celsius) for at least 2 minutes at a time. You need to do 3 rounds of this 2 minute dip. Whether you want to immerse yourself up to your chest or you want to do a full immersion is up to you, but doing a full immersion helps build your lung strength.
What are the benefits of a cold plunge?
1. Increases your energy levels
Most adults need a shot of espresso or cup of warm chai to kick start their day and get out of the sleepy zone, but taking a cold plunge can be a healthy replacement to that. Studies have shown that the cold water shocks the body and produces norepinephrine which helps with our focus and energy levels!
2. Relieves muscle pain
If you are an athlete or someone who loves working out excessively, then cold water therapy is the answer to all your body ache related problems. Cold plunge has been used as a therapy for sport players for years as it helps with the recovery of their muscles. When you immerse your body in cold water, your blood vessels shrink bringing blood closer to our organs and once you step out the blood vessels re-open which improves the blood circulation.
3. Can help reduce depression
The production of norepinephrine not only increases the energy levels, but according to some recent studies, lack of this hormone can lead to depression. Hence, taking a cold plunge can reduce the signs of depression and uplift your mood in general.
Swelling of legs and feet is common in athletes. Taking a cold plunge can help reduce the inflammation because of the drop in the temperature which helps them recover faster and get back to their routine.
If you are a fitness junkie and don’t want any body aches coming in way of your workout routine then definitely give it a try to cold plunge!