If you haven’t tried Ice bathing yet, it is time to try it! The growing trend of taking a sauna followed by a cold bath has recently grown stronger and there are several health benefits to cooling down after a while in the hot sauna.
When the body cools down, it means that the body gets a cold shock. As a result, the sympathetic nervous system is activated and hormones such as adrenaline, norepinephrine and endorphins are released. When the hormones are released at the same time as the respiratory and heart rate increasing, it gives us a feeling of euphoria and pleasure. The feeling will be even stronger if you have spent some time in a warm sauna first.
Experienced cold bathers testify that they feel happier, fitter, have less aches and that their ability to cope with stress improves. There are few scientific studies on this so far, but there is evidence to show that regular cold baths seem to relieve pain, protect against oxidative stress, increase antioxidants in the body and relieve anxiety and depressive symptoms. Studies also report positive effects on blood pressure, the immune system, and sleep.
So why not seize the opportunity to take a dip in the cold lake next time you are having a sauna!
References: Hägglund, H. (2020). Bastuboken: Heta fakta om bastu och hälsa. Ekerlids Förlag.