Yes, really. Mitochondria called. They said “Thank you!” Once you leave the warm confines of your bed, this fort of soft enveloping safe space, and are getting ready to start the day, the last thing you want is to be exposed to the cold. You want to continue the warmth and ease up slowly into the realm of the wake ones. So, you’ll put on an equally soft robe, make some piping hot coffee or tea and have a nice hot shower as a benefit of civilization and indoor plumbing. Hooray! But every now and then go against this instinct and take a cold one. Not to spit in the eye of the comforts of modern life, but to make yourself healthier and more resilient.

Seems kind of counter intuitive to do this when all you want is to stay lulled in your micro sleeps stumbling round, eyes half opened. Seems like you’re begging for a cold but it’s actually the other way around. Taking a cold shower, even when it is not for the purposes of beating the sticky summer heat, will keep you healthy and your immune system working with surgical precision. Mitochondria are a part of the cell structure and their role is to acts as the body’s power plants. They produce the energy that powers your day. Their inner membranes contain a fat called cardiolipin and the weird thing is – they like to be challenged. They like to be exposed to the cold and it makes them function far better. As in all things that are a communal effort, the cell collectives also have some weak members that are not working properly. The body is a fine tuned instrument and it does for you exactly what you need of it, weather you know it or not. So if you show your body you’ll be exposed to the cold here and there, that you’ll be in the environment where they’ll need to heat up more quickly and efficiently, the weak ones will die and will be replaced by new ones, effectively rejuvenating your whole mitochondrial body blueprint and generating more energetic output.

The mitochondria have no idea why you need them to do better. For all they care you might be lost in the woods and have to jump into a freezing river to fish, you might have migrated into an unhospitable cold climate or are having a rougher winter with no shelter… they don’t care what the reason is and can’t distinguish between a cold shower or any of the previous options but will attune themselves to the new situation to up your survival chances and protect you. They’re kind of cool like that. For this to work, the cold water needs to primarily hit your chest and forehead to jump start the rejuvenation process. It doesn’t need to last long, a minute will do to keep your cells producing energy more effectively all day long and after three days of this the body will get accustomed that you need more efficient energy production to function properly and will keep it up. So hold on for that minute. It will not be pleasant but it is worth it.