Cryotherapy is the coolest healing technique

Hollywood celebrities, Jennifer Aniston, Demi Moore and Lindsay Lohan are well-known advocates of cryotherapy, a simple, yet potent anti-aging technique.  Safely used for pain relief in Europe and Japan for decades, cryotherapy has now moved into the new arenas of aesthetics and body sculpting.

In 1978, Dr Yamaguch started using cryotherapy for the treatment of pain and inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis, but cold therapy has been used for centuries.  Cryotherapy is the topical application of a nitrogen vapour that penetrates only into the surafce layers of the skin.  Its potent effectiveness in the relief of pain and inflammation has made it common practice among physiotherapists in Europe.  America has replaced traditional ice baths with cryotherapy in professional sports practice, and aesthetic cryo treatments are fast gaining in popularity.

Full body cryotherapy

A freezing-cold nitrogen mist jetted over your skin is not as bad as it sounds.  Dressed in a bikini with protective gloves and socks, you step into what looks like a padded, space-age shower cubicle.  With your head elevated above the sides, the chamber is filled up to -160 degrees Celsius dry nitrogen steam, for up to three minutes.  This neither burns the skin nor turns you into an icicle; it simply and safely invigorates your bodily systems.  Even if you need to get out after one minute, the full benefits of cryotherapy have already kicked in.  Doing a little cryotherapy jig is certainly a good way to get through the session, but after 30 seconds you soon feel a flood of internal warmth.

When the surface of the skin is stimulated by a blast of cold vapour, the body responds, firstly, by narrowing the blood vessels (vasoconstriction) to protect the core temperature; this is followed by a rebound vasolidation as your body attempts to reheat itself.

Once you leave the cryochamber, your blood surges throughout your body, increasing oxygen supply to all of your organs and muscles, along with a rush of feel-good endorphins.  This prmootes long-term cardiovascular health, hormone and nervous system homeostasis, as well as increased lymph circulation to flush toxins and waste products from the body…

More…. This article appeared in Longevity May-June 2016

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