7

votes

What do you think of cold showers?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 23, 2011 at 11:38 AM

I've been trying to eat paleo as best I can. I was wondering about taking cold showers as I'm seeing if there are any other fun ways of living paleo other than just the nutrition; also I've heard the health benefits such as better circulation etc, and the caveman must have bathed in cold water too. Does anyone know any products I can use to wash myself which are 100% or if you even need to use any of these so called "soap" and "shower gels"?

02736efa3fda31740e8890eed0cb663d

(1813)

on April 11, 2012
at 02:03 AM

This is not scientific evidence at all, but I swear when I took cold showers last winter I didn't feel as cold, especially in my extremities.

91fe5b7e10068df9f147ee84320e38f7

(614)

on August 25, 2011
at 04:37 AM

Plus, I would guess that hundreds,if not more, disagreed w/ her. But hey, old response/ question :-) Surmising from old lady logic and all...

7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on August 25, 2011
at 04:19 AM

I 2nd the washcloth and coconut oil...if I want for soap I use baking soda.

Medium avatar

(19479)

on August 24, 2011
at 11:39 PM

Lol! I don't think Yasmine read the book ;)

C2502365891cbcc8af2d1cf1d7b0e9fc

(2437)

on June 09, 2011
at 03:49 AM

@yasmine, the dawn in the title refers more to a dawn of human history. The paleolithic was a very long dawn! The sub title is "the prehistoric origins of human sexuality". Hint: it's not at all like Morris's "pair bond" theory.

3ddefa2dde216d3376497850278493be

(55)

on June 05, 2011
at 01:33 PM

Coming from a woman, sex at dawn (especially if you've JUST woken up, not staying up late) is SO much better. Just a testimony.

7e1064164e012a1ead098098245b1cd4

(1217)

on March 16, 2011
at 06:55 AM

Hah, I've read that link before - it's certainly a good way to persuade people to give it a go!

39a1a0bc7855c084ac59df60fdf9c0dd

(1505)

on February 24, 2011
at 04:23 PM

I know I'm a contrarian on this one - it's entirely likely that I'm an unmitigated wimp - but it's not something I want to try soon! I do, though, love a dip in a cold river or icy mountain lake. I spend a lot of time in the Rockies, and I love a quick swim into a lake that still has snow melting in it.

810dd3203557d5f3e28ad52d43f1aeac

(10)

on February 24, 2011
at 05:29 AM

I have put off my cold shower regimen until April due to Canadian winters. Canada is place where you can die just from going outside.

E7dc4f2e3998906dd3213973a3c10d50

on February 24, 2011
at 03:24 AM

I try and make the last couple of minutes of my morning shower as cold as I can stand it. I always feel like a million bucks afterwards.

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25482)

on February 23, 2011
at 11:56 PM

ice baths for me with 60 lbs of ice four times a week. Its works.

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on February 23, 2011
at 09:13 PM

Downvoting ? :D People people. Upping.

8c2ed9a35f6c4d35a3552a13ddabec8d

(525)

on February 23, 2011
at 11:52 AM

thanks for your answer.

F910318b9aa27b91bcf7881f39b9eabe

(1164)

on February 23, 2011
at 11:49 AM

I love cold showers from time to time. It's one of those things that actually makes sense and does the body good!

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13 Answers

7
7e1064164e012a1ead098098245b1cd4

(1217)

on February 23, 2011
at 11:48 AM

Richard at freetheanimal.com has blogged about no soap / shampoo : link

As for cold showers, I take them very often. This is entirely anecdotal but I always get a real buzz after cold showering. Nothing better to wake me up in the morning, although funnily whenever I take a cold shower in the evening before bed I always sleep a lot better. I do feel that I recover more quickly from my workouts and I've read about the supposed benefits it offers to muscle recovery, but most of all I just love the feeling it gives me.

8c2ed9a35f6c4d35a3552a13ddabec8d

(525)

on February 23, 2011
at 11:52 AM

thanks for your answer.

4
Medium avatar

(19479)

on August 24, 2011
at 11:52 PM

Cold showers are my default setting. I rarely take warm showers/baths, and if I do it's part of a hot/cold cycle.

Instead of body washes, etc., I would give the skin a good scrubbing from time to time to loosen the dead material and to promote circulation. A nice organic washcloth works for this.

This also applies to the hair (use your fingers to rub the scalp, loosening up dander and redistributing oils).

You could also rub your skin with good quality coconut oil afterwards.

In addition to cold showers, I like supplement with a cold-pack on the upper back every night for about 20 minutes.

During a recent trip to Wisconsin (you can read my food/exercise log here), I took daily COLD! showers (10 minutes), swam daily in a cold river, and didn't gain a pound in spite of far greater than normal alcohol consumption for the entire week.

I think that there is a definite thermogenic effect (I discussed Tim Ferris' theories about this here) as well as possible immune system/recovery benefits.

7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on August 25, 2011
at 04:19 AM

I 2nd the washcloth and coconut oil...if I want for soap I use baking soda.

3
C2502365891cbcc8af2d1cf1d7b0e9fc

(2437)

on February 23, 2011
at 11:53 AM

I've been taking cold showers for about six weeks. It's summer here in Australia it's fairly easy so far. Once the shock is over, takes about a minute, it's easy. To early to tell the benefits

I haven't been rubbing chemicals into my skin for about three months. I don't smell at all, but I only ever wear cotton and I think that's important.

I like your concept of other fun ways to live paleo. I'm always looking for opportunities. I say bah humbug! to those who say it's not about re-enactment.

I'm also trying to squat on the toilet, but I'm finding that very difficult.

I'd also like to follow the theories in the book "Sex at Dawn", but I'm having a hard time convincing my wife.

84666a86108dee8d11cbbc85b6382083

(2399)

on February 23, 2011
at 09:13 PM

Downvoting ? :D People people. Upping.

3ddefa2dde216d3376497850278493be

(55)

on June 05, 2011
at 01:33 PM

Coming from a woman, sex at dawn (especially if you've JUST woken up, not staying up late) is SO much better. Just a testimony.

C2502365891cbcc8af2d1cf1d7b0e9fc

(2437)

on June 09, 2011
at 03:49 AM

@yasmine, the dawn in the title refers more to a dawn of human history. The paleolithic was a very long dawn! The sub title is "the prehistoric origins of human sexuality". Hint: it's not at all like Morris's "pair bond" theory.

Medium avatar

(19479)

on August 24, 2011
at 11:39 PM

Lol! I don't think Yasmine read the book ;)

91fe5b7e10068df9f147ee84320e38f7

(614)

on August 25, 2011
at 04:37 AM

Plus, I would guess that hundreds,if not more, disagreed w/ her. But hey, old response/ question :-) Surmising from old lady logic and all...

1
76f3ead3aa977d876bcf3331d35a36e9

(4620)

on February 23, 2011
at 03:10 PM

I've been taking cold(ish) showers for the past few months, and I think they've REALLY helped my dry skin and acne. Usually in the winter, I get pretty bad dry skin and more acne breakouts. Quite possibly they were made worse by the daily steaming hot showers I would take.

The problem was getting used to not taking daily hot showers throughout a Canadian winter.

810dd3203557d5f3e28ad52d43f1aeac

(10)

on February 24, 2011
at 05:29 AM

I have put off my cold shower regimen until April due to Canadian winters. Canada is place where you can die just from going outside.

0
2b2c2e4aa87e9aa4c99cae48e980f70d

(1059)

on April 11, 2012
at 12:32 AM

There's nothing more paleo than NO SOAP, NO SHAMPOO and NO TOOTHPASTE. All I use is a loofa sponge. I draw the line at toilet paper ;).

0
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on April 10, 2012
at 10:51 PM

I am crazy in that I ONLY take cold showers- unless someone else is in there with me ;)

0
9dcf0fbfb9571ab16946eddae66f4f3e

(110)

on February 07, 2012
at 08:27 AM

Hot showers when I'm cold, cold showers when I'm hot. There's nothing quite like those icy needles of water to wake you up and make your skin tingle and come alive.

0
7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on August 25, 2011
at 04:16 AM

I am experimenting with cold showers but I'm completely intrigued by hormesis which I learned about here...

Todd Becker turned me on to cold showers from the above site. He has some interesting ideas and cites many people we are familiar with in our community.

Tim Ferris (can't decide what I think about him yet) also has some commentary on cold showers and cold in general in regard to weight loss, sleep and health.

0
C5c3a1fb34a486366e45afbb5eaaca05

on August 24, 2011
at 11:46 PM

Nothing like getting the mammalian dive reflex going at the end of a long day. In addition, consistent cold showers help the body habituate to colder temperatures. I also swore by ice baths back when my ankle tendons were torn.

0
1cecf8d508913d7ad43d30341f06dc1b

on August 24, 2011
at 11:27 PM

I take a cold shower every day, and it works wonders. I find that they're actually the most beneficial in the wintertime - makes me thumb the thermostat a lot less once I've doused myself, since my body does a better job regulating temperature after a jolt to the central nervous system.

One caveat: I noticed after a few months of showering cold (not just lukewarm) that I started to develop a very thin layer of subcutaneous body fat (no changes to eating or exercise habits, so I'm assuming the showers are what did it). It's really not noticeable to anyone but me (not even the GF noticed) but it's definitely there, and I would bet that once the winter rolls around again I'll start to notice I've built up an even greater resistance to cold. So if you're looking at it from an all-around "fitness" perspective (and not just "looking good naked"), then you could say that, in that sense, cold showers do indeed adapt you better to enduring colder climates.

0
Medium avatar

on March 15, 2011
at 10:59 PM

I LOVE cold showers. But I always start off with a hot shower, and end it with the hot water turned off and the cold turned all the way up. Like others have said, it's great in the morning, and at night it helps me sleep. It sends a shock through your muscles that you can really feel, gets your blood pumping and makes my skin look nice.

Check this out:

http://artofmanliness.com/2010/01/18/the-james-bond-shower-a-shot-of-cold-water-for-health-and-vitality/

The title might be a little over the top, the website too, but the info is good. Love the supposed testosterone boost too, as I work out quite frequently.

7e1064164e012a1ead098098245b1cd4

(1217)

on March 16, 2011
at 06:55 AM

Hah, I've read that link before - it's certainly a good way to persuade people to give it a go!

0
Medium avatar

(7073)

on February 23, 2011
at 04:45 PM

I think cold showers echo the Scandinavian practice of having a sauna and then rolling in the snow. It's good for your health - I mean, look at all those healthy Swedish people out there ;) I find cold showers extremely difficult so start off really hot (in winter) and then get colder and colder as I finish. It helps close the skin pores. If you wash your hair and then finish with a cooler rinse, it comes out shinier and not so static.

You do not need to use soap, but you will be put off as there is a period where things get worse for a while, thereafter improving drastically.

There have been some previous threads on this topic which you will find really helpful if you are thinking of going no soap/poo:

http://paleohacks.com/questions/8230/no-poo-and-cold-showers#axzz1EniY6Z6T

http://paleohacks.com/questions/6641/the-no-shampoo-soap-deodorant-folks-how-about-now#axzz1EniY6Z6T

http://paleohacks.com/questions/1484/how-did-grok-deal-with-bo#axzz1EniY6Z6T

0
34f52288da81c6504caf795f3dbb6c2f

on February 23, 2011
at 03:27 PM

I've been experimenting with "contrast showers" lately. 45 seconds of as cold as I can stand it, followed by 1 minute and a half of as hot as i can take it. I do that cyle about 4 times and end on cold. I feel alert, sleep more soundly and better recovery.

As for the no soap issue, I haven't washed my face in over 7 months and my skin has never been clearer. I'm also washing my hair half as much as I used too.

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