5 benefits of ice baths according to Joe Rogan

5 Ice Bath Health Benefits According To Joe Rogan

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Love him or hate him, Joe Rogan’s controversial ice bath (also known as cold plunge) videos are making quite the splash lately.

You may have heard about ice baths before and wondered what all the fanfare is all about. Though it may seem like the latest trend, ice baths have been popular among athletes for decades (and around for centuries).

Recently, they’ve been getting more attention from the general public as well. If you’re not familiar with ice baths, they’re exactly what they sound like, releasing your inhibitions and willfully soaking in a tub of freezing-cold ice water.

Related Reading: How To Save Thousands with our DIY Water Chiller For Cold Plunge Guide

Why would anyone willingly want to do this? Aren’t ice baths just torturous? Well, according to Joe Rogan, there are quite a few health benefits to taking the cold, icy plunge.

But are his claims legit? In this post, we’ll go over the top five ice bath benefits according to Rogan, and fact-check the science.

Benefit #1: Ice Baths Can Help Reduce Inflammation

One of the main cold water plunge health benefits, according to Rogan, is their ability to reduce inflammation. Inflammation is a natural response of the body to injury or infection, and it’s usually a good thing. However, excessive inflammation can lead to pain, stiffness, and other unpleasant symptoms.

Rogan claims that ice baths can help reduce inflammation by constricting blood vessels and reducing blood flow to the affected area. This can help reduce swelling and ease pain.

Related Reading: 5 Best Affordable Ice Bath Tubs For Those On A Budget

There is some scientific evidence to support this claim. One study in the Journal of Athletic Training found that ice baths were effective at reducing inflammation in athletes after intense exercise.

Another study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found that ice baths were effective at reducing muscle soreness and improving range of motion in athletes.

Benefit #2: Can Help Improve Recovery Time

Another ice bath benefit is that it may improve recovery time. When you exercise, your muscles go through a lot of stress and microtrauma. This is what causes muscle soreness and fatigue.

Rogan boasts that ice baths dramatically improve his own recovery time. As mentioned, extreme cold reduces inflammation which then flushes out lactic acid and other metabolic waste products from the muscles. This can help reduce muscle soreness and fatigue, allowing you to recover more quickly and get back to your training.

Related: The 10 Best Cooling Mattresses for Muscle Recovery in 2023

Andrew Huberman M.D. also substantiates the muscle recovery claim and outlines a whole host of other benefits as well.

Benefit #3 Ice Baths Can Help Improve Circulation

Surprisingly, ice baths can promote better circulation in the body. When you soak in an ice bath, your blood vessels constrict, which can help improve circulation by increasing blood flow to your organs and other vital parts of your body.

This line of thought goes against the common recommendation of using heat to improve circulation, which vasodilates the blood vessels in the body. Rogan claims that improved circulation can lead to a number of benefits, including improved muscle function, better organ function, and faster recovery from injury or illness.

Perhaps for those reasons, that’s why Joe Rogan will typically start with a sauna session, followed by an ice bath.

RELATED: Improve your circulation with a vibration plate!

Benefit #4: The Immune System Boosting Benefits of Ice Baths

How many times have you heard the saying, “Come on out of the cold, you’ll get sick”? Well, contrary to popular belief, exposure to cold can actually BOOST your immune system rather than suppress it.

One study concluded:

“It was concluded that the stress-inducing noninfectious stimuli, such as repeated cold water immersions, which increased metabolic rate due to shivering the elevated blood concentrations of catecholamines, activated the immune system to a slight extent.”

PubMed

In the case of cold plunges, your body has to work hard to maintain its internal temperature, which can stimulate the immune system.

Another study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that cold water immersion was effective at increasing white blood cell count. A high WBC count is an indicator of a strong immune system.

Related Reading: Want to alternate heat and cold like Joe Rogan? Check out our sauna blanket review.

Benefit #5: Ice Baths Can Help Improve Mental Toughness

Finally, one of the cold water plunge health benefits that Rogan often talks about is their ability to improve mental toughness. When you soak in an ice bath, you have to confront your fears and push through the discomfort. This can help build mental toughness and resilience.

This can be especially beneficial for athletes, who often have to face challenges and setbacks in their training and competition. By building mental toughness through ice baths, athletes can become more resilient and better able to handle the ups and downs of their sport.

There is some scientific evidence to support this claim as well. One study published in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine found that cold water immersion was effective at improving mental toughness in athletes. Another study found that cold water immersion was effective at improving performance in athletes by helping them cope with stress and discomfort.

What Cold Plunge Tub Does Joe Rogan Use?

In the Instagram post above, Joe mentions he’s using a tub from Morozko Forge. That was posted back in June 2022. However, that same month he posted another video and thanked BlueCube Baths, which claims they’re Joe’s preferred ice bath. Which is it? Watch Joe compare the two in this short clip:

How long should my first cold plunge be?

It’s generally recommended to start with a shorter duration for your first cold plunge. As your body becomes accustomed to the cold, you can then gradually increase the length of time.

Some experts suggest starting with a duration of no more than 1-2 minutes. From there, gradually increase your time by 1-2 minutes until you reach a duration that is comfortable. It’s also important to make sure the water is not too cold, as extremely cold water can be dangerous.

What temp is best for a cold plunge?

According to studies the water of your cold plunge should fall in the 52-59 degrees Fahrenheit range.

This point cannot be emphasized enough, but it’s important to listen to your body! If you start to feel uncomfortable or chilled to the point of uncontrolled shivering, stop immediately.

Shivering is a natural response to cold temperatures and it can help increase your body temperature. If left unchecked, your body temperature may become chilled to the point of hypothermia.

Pro tip: Take a warm shower or have warm clothing nearby after the cold plunge. Also, remember to drink plenty of water before and after the cold plunge.

Related Reading: The Ice Pod Review

What does a 2-minute cold plunge do to the body?

Several physiological changes can occur in the body when you do a cold plunge. Some of the most notable changes include:

  • Vasoconstriction: Cold water immersion can cause blood vessels to constrict, which can help warm the body by reducing heat loss from the blood vessels of the skin.
  • Increased heart rate: Cold water immersion can increase heart rate as the body tries to maintain its internal temperature.
  • Increased respiratory rate: Cold water immersion can also increase respiratory rate as the body tries to warm itself.
  • Increased blood pressure: Cold water immersion can cause a temporary increase in blood pressure as the body tries to maintain its internal temperature.
  • Increased production of white blood cells: Cold water immersion has been shown to increase the production of white blood cells, which are an important part of the immune system.
  • Increased production of adrenaline: Cold water immersion can also increase the production of adrenaline, which is a hormone that helps the body respond to stress.

Related Reading: The LifePro Allevachill Recovery Ice Tub Review

Cryotherapy vs. Cold Plunge

You may be wondering, what is the difference between cryotherapy and cold plunge. After all, both have become increasingly popular as of late.

Cold plunge and cryotherapy are both forms of cold therapy however, there are some key differences between the two methods.

One of the main differences between cold plunge and cryotherapy is the duration of the treatment. Cold plunge involves immersing the body in cold water for a specific amount of time, usually a few minutes to a few tens of minutes. Cryotherapy, on the other hand, involves exposing the body to extremely cold temperatures for a shorter period of time, usually a few minutes to a few tenths of seconds.

Another difference is the temperature of the cold. Cold plunge involves immersing the body in water that is typically around 34-60 degrees Fahrenheit. On the other hand, cryotherapy involves exposing the body to air that is around -200 to -300 degrees Fahrenheit.

It’s also important to note that cryotherapy is typically done in a specialized chamber or room, while cold plunge can be done in a tub or other container.

Overall, the effectiveness of cold plunge and cryotherapy may depend on the individual and the specific circumstances. Some people may find one method to be more effective than the other, while others may find that a combination of the two methods works best for them.

Conclusion

So after looking at all the data, perhaps Joe Rogan and his cold plunges aren’t all hype after all.

Ice baths may not be for everyone, but the emerging evidence of their effectiveness is intriguing. From reducing inflammation to boosting the immune system, it’s clear that ice baths can be a powerful tool for improving physical and mental health.

But let’s be real, they’re also a great way to prove to your friends that you’re tougher than they are. So go ahead and give it a try – just make sure you have a warm blanket and hot cocoa waiting for you when you get out. And remember, don’t overdo it – start slowly and listen to your body to ensure that your ice bath experience is safe and comfortable.

Happy soaking!

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