Cold showers cure the cold?

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Benefits of taking a cold shower

I have been taking cold showers for a while now and now have one every morning. I find it energises me and I feel awake instead of drowsy and I need this as I do research in the morning for the articles I write. I have not got used to jumping into a cold shower. I tend to take a normal shower and do my hair and body etc and then for around 5-10 minutes I adjust the temperature setting until it gets to the coldest setting and I stay under for about 5 minutes.

I remember, when I was younger, going on holiday and I was hung-over from the night before (you know the type of holiday the 18-30 type and every night is just drinking) I always dove into the pool in the morning, which was cold, it cured my hangover after 10 minutes swimming and my headaches would disappear. I did this a few times in the course of the morning.

There may be one drawback, if you are not religious like me you might find god very quickly when the cold water first hits me I tend to shout some expletive or "˜Jesus Christ!', "˜oh my God!'

I have since found out there are many benefits to having a cold shower or a cold bath, I haven't really done the latter, which I hadn't realised until I did some research on the subject.

I found an article on CNN about a centenarian who attributes his long, healthy life to having a cold shower every morning read it here

How it helps the body

In an article from earthclinic the following benefits of cold water were noted

"¢ Brings blood to the capillaries, therefore increasing circulation throughout the body.
"¢ Cleans the circulatory system.
"¢ Reduces blood pressure on internal organs.
"¢ Provides flushing for the organs and provides a new supply of blood.
"¢ Strengthens the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems.
"¢ Contracts the muscles to eliminate toxins and poisonous wastes.
"¢ Strengthens the mucous membranes, which help resist hay fever, allergies, colds, coughs.

Some evidence

A lot of people have reported that it helps panic attacks, although I haven't seen any scientific backing for this it is purely anecdotal. However panic attacks bring blood rushing from areas of your body to those that need it most to get you ready for the flight or fight syndrome. Normally you would start to calm down after a while however if you suffer from panic attacks your adrenaline is still floating about in the body and your para-sympathetic nervous system does not shut down properly. It may be that a cold shower helps to shut down the system and readies it for heating your body up and getting blood to your vital organs.
Again some more anecdotal evidence, taking a cold shower every day helps to ward off colds. This is probably something to do with it strengthening the mucous membranes which, as mentioned above, helps to reduce fever, allergies and colds.

Try it for 21 days and see if you notice a difference.

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About the author

Steven Aitchison

Steven Aitchison is the author of The Belief Principle and an online trainer teaching personal development and online business.  He is also the creator of this blog which has been running since August 2006.