If you’ve read our Biohacking Basics: Introduction to Cold Thermogenesis , you should have a good understanding of the basics of what cold thermogenesis is, and how it works. For those that want to start experiencing the many benefits of this biohack, it’s important to start slowly, and let your body become used to the practice. Jumping into a freezing cold lake and staying there for 20 minutes is not the way to start experimenting, and starting with drastic techniques like that can be dangerous. Fortunately there are a number of simple ways to start practicing cold thermogenesis, that don’t require much in the way of preparation, and won’t risk any serious negative reactions.
Take a cold shower
This might be the easiest way to start experimenting with cold thermogenesis, because it should fit right into your normal daily routine. At the end of typical shower, slowly bring the water temperature down to as cold as you can stand. Natural underground water temperature is around 55 degrees Fahrenheit, so on the coldest setting the water in your shower should get at least that low. In the wintertime, it might get quite a bit colder than that. Stay in the cold shower for 5 to 10 minutes, then get out, dry off, and go about your day. You should feel energized and alert, and it makes for a refreshing, invigorating start to your day.
The beauty of the cold shower method is that it allows your body to slowly acclimate to the cold water, rather than the sudden shock of getting into a cold bath or taking a dip in a cold body of water. This can prevent the physical side effects of cold shock, which can be dangerous – particularly for those with high blood pressure or heart problems. It’s probably the most controllable way to get your whole body into the cold thermogenesis state, because if it starts to become painful, or if you feel lightheaded or have any other signs of physical side effects, you can simply bring the water temperature back up, or turn the water off and get out of the shower.
Spend part of your morning outside
If you live in a very warm climate, or it’s summertime, this method won’t work. But in the winter, and in many areas in the spring or fall, early morning will be cold enough to trigger cold thermogenesis. Spending 10-20 minutes outside while it’s cold out, especially if you can do it wearing only shorts and a t-shirt, is a good way to get some cold exposure without needing any preparation. Doing your morning meditation or yoga in a cold backyard can be a great way to start working with cold thermogenesis. Be cautious and use common sense if you live in a very cold climate. You typically won’t risk frostbite if you limit your time outside to 20 minute or less, but if it’s very windy this danger can increase.
Keep your bedroom cold at night
Sleeping in a cold room has been shown to have numerous health benefits, and it’s a simple way to experience cold thermogenesis. Astudy of cool temperatures and their effect on fat and metabolism found that sleeping in a room at 66 degrees Fahrenheit had significant benefits. Participants slept for one month at the lower temperature, and it led to an increase of 42% in brown adipose tissue volume, and a 10% increase in fat metabolic activity. So in the winter, turn down the heat at night, and in the summer crank up the A/C at night. Try to sleep without many blankets, preferably just a light sheet, or no blankets at all. At first you may find it a little hard to sleep in the colder temperatures, so you can bring the temperature down slowly over the course of a few weeks as your body acclimates to the change. You may ultimately find that you sleep better in a colder room, and you’ll be reaping the fat burning benefits of cold thermogenesis literally in your sleep.