CryoTherapy. Ever heard of it? It’s not your
typical mainstream treatment that a doctor prescribes. But this unique therapy offers
natural and supposedly safe health benefits. But without FDA approval, does this therapy
really perform on its promises? We stopped by Cryo Body Works in Austin, Texas to find
out everything you need to know about this alternative therapy.
Whole body cryotherapy is a natural, noninvasive way to activate the body’s natural response
to recover as it’s exposed to very cold temperatures. And so we expose your body from
your neck and below to dry vapor for about three minutes at 220 degrees below zero.
The extreme cold stimulates skin sensors, activating a Central Nervous System response.
This causes the release of endorphins, the body’s natural pain inhibitors and mood
elevators. The enhanced circulation of blood movement into and out of the core decreases
inflammation by clearing toxins. The outer layers of your skin drops to approximately
50 degrees F and your body immediately feels the effects.
It sounds extreme but that’s really designed just so your body pulls all of your blood
supply into your core to protect the visceral core organs. And that is powerful enough to
stimulate anti-inflammatory proteins. Some of the proposed benefits that cryotherapy
offers is increased circulation, athletic and injury recovery, immune system support,
fibromyalgia relief, insomnia relief, an alternative psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema treatment,
it also helps with stress, mood and energy. And according to Caulen Lauria from Cryo Body
Works, you burn between 500-800 calories per session, so it acts as a metabolism boost
and cellulite reduction therapy. However, many still question its safety, especially
for young children and the elderly.” We’ve had eight year olds all the way to
80 year olds. You may know that athletes sometimes get in
an ice bath to help with recovery after a workout or competition. What’s the difference
between an ice bath and cryotherapy? Whole body cryotherapy is activating a systemic
response to your whole body. Localized icing is going to be very effective but it’s only
going to be a localized effect. Cryotherapy is going to be about 5 times as powerful in
terms of the response that you’re creating and you’re also having endorphins that are
coming from that, stress hormones, and creating a much more powerful full body effect.
Cryotherapy is not approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. As with anything
there are risks associated with this therapy, so it is very important to make sure the facility
you are using has been approved by the city for proper safety measures. Make sure to follow
all instructions given by facility employees and never try cryotherapy without supervision.
Very little large studies on the effectiveness of cryotherapy have been conducted. According
to the Journal of Athletic Training, based on the available evidence, cryotherapy seems
to be effective in decreasing pain and improves the perception of recovery and soreness after
various sports and exercise. However, this does not seem to translate into enhanced functional
recovery. In comparison with other rehabilitation techniques, such as icing, the success of
cryotherapy has been questioned and further research is needed. But, if you are looking
for an alternative form of therapy to reduce inflammation and are interested in Cryotherapy,
be sure to speak with your doctor about more information and if this therapy is right for