The Instituto Biológico de la Salud (Biological Health Institute) explains that changes in temperature in general are especially good for boosting the immune system.
The institute explains that cold showers can stimulate circulation and are recommended for people with circulation problems, while hot showers are suggested to be taken before going to bed or as a way to relax for those individuals that have problems falling asleep.
The institute lists a few benefits of taking cold showers:
- Strengthens the immune system. Cold showers improve the immune system because as the body tries to heat itself, it releases more white blood cells, which are the cells responsible for protecting the body from infections and eliminating bacteria, viruses and waste from body tissues.
- Prevents depression. According to a study from the University of Virginia in the United States, cold showers activate the sympathetic nervous system and increase noradrenaline levels in the brain, a neurotransmitter related to motivation and to how alert we are.
- Helps with weight loss. When the body undergoes cool temperatures, it begins to produce more energy to raise its temperature, which helps us shed fat.
- Improves our physical performance. A study from The Journal of Clinical Investigation affirms that being submerged in cold water aids in the recovery process after doing high-intensity exercise.
- Stimulates our breathing. If you have ever had the chance to take a cold shower, you may have noticed that not only your heart beats faster, but you also begin to breathe harder. This effort helps expand the lungs, brings more oxygen to the body and makes us feel more energized.