How Regular Cold Exposure Can Impact Your Wellness

October 26, 2023

It is our natural tendency to go to great lengths to avoid cold temperatures. However, a growing body of research suggests that embracing the cold may have a range of wellness benefits.  

Regular cold exposure, often referred to as cold therapy or cryotherapy, is a therapeutic technique that involves the application of cold or ice to the body in various forms for the purpose of reducing pain and inflammation, promoting healing, and providing other health benefits. It is commonly used in the context of injury recovery, athletic training, and certain medical treatments. 

This article explores the benefits of subjecting your body to cold temperatures:

  1. Boosting Immunity

When exposed to cold, your body works to maintain its core temperature by increasing the production of white blood cells, particularly natural killer cells, which play a crucial role in your body’s defense against pathogens. These cells become more active and efficient in identifying and destroying invaders, thereby strengthening your immune response. 

  1. Improved Circulation

Cold therapy can improve your circulation by causing blood vessels to constrict and then dilate upon rewarming. Better circulation means that oxygen and nutrients are delivered more efficiently to your muscles and organs, leading to increased vitality and reduced risk of chronic diseases. 

  1. Enhanced Mood and Mental Well-being

“Cold exposure can trigger the release of endorphins, which are natural mood elevators,” says wellness expert Greg Lindberg. It’s no coincidence that many people report a feeling of euphoria and reduced stress after taking a cold shower or engaging in cold water immersion. It also reduces the levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression.  

  1. Weight Management

Regular cold exposure can aid in weight management. When your body is exposed to cold, it expends energy to maintain its core temperature, leading to increased calorie expenditure 

  1. Reduced Inflammation

 Athletes and fitness enthusiasts often use cold therapy to speed up recovery from strenuous exercise. Cold exposure can reduce inflammation in muscles and joints, decrease muscle soreness, and minimize the risk of injury. Cold water immersion, for example, is a popular technique among athletes to help their bodies recover more quickly. 

  1. Enhanced Mental Resilience

Exposing yourself to cold conditions can improve mental resilience and willpower. The discipline required to endure cold temperatures, such as in ice baths or cold showers, can transfer to other areas of your life, helping you better manage stress and challenging situations. 

  1. Improved Sleep

Many people who engage in regular cold exposure report improved sleep quality. The drop in body temperature after cold exposure can help signal to the body that it’s time to rest. It can also alleviate symptoms of insomnia and promote a deeper, more restorative sleep. 

In a nutshell 

Cold exposure has various health benefits for the mind and body, says emerging wellness advocate Greg Lindberg. However, it’s essential to approach cold exposure with mindfulness and safety in mind.  

Consult with a healthcare professional before starting any cold therapy regimen. Always start slowly, and gradually increase the intensity and duration of cold exposure to minimize the risk of adverse effects like hypothermia or frostbite. 

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Editor’s Note: Lifelong Labs, founded by wellness advocate Greg Lindberg, is a science-based wellness, longevity and leadership brand that helps people live younger longer, healthier and happier. For more information, visit


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