Cold plunging has been proven to reduce depression and improve overall mood! Exposure to cold is known to activate the nervous system, increase the blood level of beta-endorphin and noradrenaline, and increase synaptic release of noradrenaline in the brain, resulting in an enduring anti-depressive effect.


    A 2021 medical paper by Chauvineau and colleagues showed cold water immersion increased slow-wave sleep and reduced nighttime waking, resulting in more restful sleep. Cold water exposure at the proper dose, 3-4 hours before bedtime, has been shown to improve time-to-sleep and overall sleep quality, as tested with the Oura Ring.


    Cold water exposure reduces inflammation and soreness in the muscles. This is why sports medicine has utilized ice baths for years to help athletes recover from intense workouts or competitions. Cold plunging regularly also improves performance by increasing blood flow and oxygenation to the muscles. This results in better muscle function and less fatigue during exercise.


    Cold plunging is an efficient way to restore depleted energy and vitality. My energy is zonked after an hour of yardwork in the Texas sun. I take a 3-minute plunge at 52 degrees in the Fjord to recharge my battery quickly. Those 3 minutes in the cold water abate my exhaustion, leaving me feeling refreshed, glowing with calm, clean, natural energy.


    Beyond physical benefits, cold water immersion can also have a big positive impact on mental health. It can reduce stress and anxiety, improve mood, and increase mental clarity and focus. One of the first things that attracted me to cold water immersion was the mental toughness it requires and builds.


    Cold plunging improves your metabolic health, reducing your risk of developing type-2 diabetes and other cardiovascular diseases. According to a paper published in 2022 by Dr. James Mercer and colleagues, cold water immersion activates brown adipose tissue (brown fat). When stimulated, brown fat uses glucose along with triglycerides as fuel, which has been shown to reduce triglycerides and LDL cholesterol while improving your HDL cholesterol for a healthier cardiovascular lipid profile.


    According to a paper published in Lancet, 37% of men and 38% of women in America are either overweight or obese. Deliberate cold water exposure has been shown to reduce body fat, improve glucose absorption, and reduce the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes and other metabolic disorders.