Imagine it: You strip down to your undies and don a pair of mittens and socks. You enter into a tanning-booth-like chamber and wait as the temperature drops. Reaching temperatures of nearly -250 degrees Fahrenheit, you stand in the booth for just two to three minutes. Your body is shocked. It’s cryotherapy, and it could just be a new, cool, weight loss tool. What is it about this health craze that has people willing to get frozen, stone cold? Are the benefits really that great, or it is not everything it’s been sported as? We decided to interview two experts to learn more about the whole body cryotherapy process and see if it’s something our readers should try. Health is wealth, after all. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits of cryotherapy, including muscle recovery and anti-aging effects and see if it really helps you lose weight and drop pounds.
Whole-Body Cryotherapy: Can It Really Help You Lose Weight?
What are the benefits of cryotherapy?
“Cryotherapy is generally known for its muscle tissue recovery benefits but it has also come to light that it can help relieve chronic pain and alleviate inflammation,” says Ben Feinson, co-founder and manager at Cryofuel in New York City. “It is also great for your immune system because of all the extra nutrients that will be pushed around the body. We even have some people that use it to help depression.” But when it comes to weight loss, Feinson notes, it’s just one part of your overall dieting plan. “It is another tool in your arsenal,” he says. “I would not suggest to solely use this to lose weight, but partnered with regular exercise, it is a winning formula.” If the temperature extremes give you a bit of a fright (-250 degrees doesn’t sound like an environment many would enter voluntarily), it’s not as freezing as you would expect. Because it’s liquid nitrogen that’s pumped throughout the chamber, the temperatures hit your body differently. On average, it’s said to help you burn around 500 to 800 calories per session.
Can assist in aiding weight loss
Can assist in muscle recovery and speed it up
Can push nutrients around the body, resulting in better health
Can be great for your mental health
Can be great for anti-aging effects, aid in collagen production
Helps decrease inflammation, which can cause many health issues
What can you expect when it comes to the process of cryotherapy?
“You can expect it to be very cold because it is, but it is a very dry cold, so it’s more bearable than a windy winter morning in New York,” Feinson adds. “You can expect your legs to go a little numb and tingly but this is completely normal — this is just your blood leaving that area when traveling to the vital organs. The last 30 seconds will be the hardest but by that point, you’re basically finished. It is a very euphoric feeling and you can expect to feel completely rejuvenated post-treatment.” And it can take as little as one session to truly see the effects. According to Michael Perrine, owner of Vitality in New York City, people can see the effects of the treatment in as few as one session. “It depends on the issue you’re coming in with to treat, but people will see effects after just one session,” he says. “About 99 percent of the time, it’s a drugless pain relief and people want to come back for more.” That’s all we need to know, really — sign us up!
When it comes to boosting your weight loss, and even bringing anti-aging benefits, cryotherapy can do it all, Perrine adds. “It’s amazing for the skin because when you’re in the chamber, your body has no idea,” he says. “We put the body under a certain controlled amount of stress and we’re faking it out, and that sets off a chain reaction of psychological effects. A lot of people focus on the skin, and the skin anticipates damage because it recognizes the cooling temperatures to it starts to build up collagen.” And it’s this collagen, he notes, that can help to fight visible signs of aging. All you have to do is stand for three minutes in -250 degree cold to get it. So can you withstand the -250 degree cold? It could help you fight weight gain, aging, and inflammation. Let us know if you’d try cryotherapy. If you’ve already tried it, let us know how you like it.