Why We Should All Be Taking Cold Showers

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

I always thought taking a cold shower was kind of like putting on a fur coat to take your dog for a walk in the middle of August: weird, incredibly uncomfortable, and beneficial to no one — until today.

Today, I came across a piece on Fast Company, headlined “The Scientific Case for Cold Showers,” which dispelled my misconceptions about, well, cold showers. I thought, So there’s actually a reason to take cold showers? People who willingly step under a faucet spewing ice-cold water first thing in the morning aren’t simply insane? How intriguing. 

The piece is a first-person account of a guy’s struggle to become a cold-shower convert in order to reap the benefits, touted in scientific studies: increased energy, soothed sore muscles, improvements in memory, and even a treatment for depression.

The bone-chilling (har har) fear of taking a cold shower keeps the author from diving in for a while, but eventually he gets up the nerve up to turn down the heat (he actually starts off warm then gradually lowers the water temperature until it’s cold), and it’s official: After one cold shower, he’s a cold-shower convert! He says cold showers make him feel more energetic, alert and happy. I was convinced he was lying, because how on Earth could a cold shower make someone happy? But then I scrolled down to the comments section.  Read more »

The Checkup: 11 Science-Backed Health Reasons to Get a Dog This Weekend

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

• Not only do dogs make for the perfect cuddle buddies and Netflix-marathon partners, they’re also really good for our health: Having a dog around can lower your blood pressure, reduce your risk of getting cardiovascular disease — they can even be trained to sniff out cancer! (You can start looking for your new furry friend by perusing our weekly adoptable running dogs.) [Greatist]
Read more »

New Jersey May Tighten Vaccine Requirements

flu vaccine

Some New Jersey legislators want to make it tougher for state residents to claim religious exemptions to otherwise-mandatory vaccinations, the Courier-Post reports.

The number of New Jersey public school students citing such objections to avoid vaccines has quadrupled in recent years, from 1,500 to 9,000; in 2008 the state told schools to accept claims of religious objections without question. That policy is now being reconsidered by lawmakers.

Long story short: They’re no longer willing to take claims of faith (natch) on faith. Read more »

Medicating Women’s Feelings? What Else Is New?

woman health

According to a piece in the New York Times that ran on Sunday, “at least one in four women in America now takes a psychiatric medication, compared with one in seven men.” While the number is certainly jarring (and cause for alarm), the idea of “medicating women’s feelings” as a way of managing them is hardly a new one, though it as sexist as it is timeless.

“Female hysteria” was once a medical diagnosis, specific to women’s mental health and temperament. The all-encompassing diagnosis was a one-size-fits-all approach to understanding and controlling the so-perceived messy minds of women, including emotional outbursts and sexuality. Given the “Good Old Boys Club” nature of ancient and modern medicine, it is hardly a surprise that sexist opinions were not only allowed to flourish, but guided most research, with dubious (and sometimes dangerous) remedies for treatment. Read more »

« Older Posts  |  Newer Posts »