Have you wondered how some people can endure great hardships and even come out stronger for them? Or how certain creatures can thrive in what seem to be the most extreme conditions? The secret lies in a concept called hormesis.
What is hormetic stress?
Hormesis is defined as “the favourable effects of low exposures to toxins or other stressors”. In other words, hormesis is the process by which a small amount of stressor can actually lead to improvements in your health. Let’s take a closer look at how this works.
Why would someone want to generate stress?
The answer lies in the fact that our bodies are designed to adapt to stress. When we are exposed to mild stressors, our bodies respond by becoming stronger and more resilient. This is the same principle that is at work when we engage in physical exercise – by exerting ourselves, we make our bodies stronger.
In a similar way, exposure to small doses of toxins or other stressors can have a beneficial effect, as our bodies learn to adapt and become more resistant. This resistance can then protect us against larger doses of the same toxin, or even chronic stress.
So, in short, hormesis is a way of using stress to make our bodies stronger and more resilient.
How does one go about generating hormetic stress?
Starting out with small amounts of stress is the best way to generate hormetic stress. If you’re not sure where to start, here are a few ideas:
Intermittent fasting (dietary restriction)
This is a great way to increase stress tolerance and promote autophagy (the process by which your body breaks down and recycles old or damaged cells).
Exercise is a great way to generate hormetic stress. Not only does it help to increase your overall fitness like undergoing high-intensity interval training (HITT), but it also helps to increase your body’s ability to deal with stress.
This can be done through things like cold shower or ice baths. Cold exposure helps to increase your body’s production of brown adipose tissue (BAT), which is a type of fat that actually helps to burn calories and generate heat.
This can be done through mild heat stress from saunas or steam rooms. Heat exposure helps to increase your body’s production of heat shock proteins (HSPs), which are important for cellular repair and protection.
All of these methods can be used to generate hormetic stress and improve your overall health. So don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone and challenge your body in new ways. Your body will thank you for it!
Benefits of Hormetic Stress
There are a number of benefits that have been associated with hormetic stress. These benefits include:
1. Increased resilience
Exposure to hormetic stressors can lead to an increase in your body’s ability to deal with stress. This means that you will be better equipped to handle stressful situations when they arise.
2. Improved cognitive function
Studies have shown that exposure to hormetic stressors can lead to improved cognitive function. This includes things like improved memory, increased alertness, and enhanced decision-making skills.
3. Increased lifespan
A reduced mortality risk has been observed in a number of studies that have looked at the effects of hormesis. This suggests that exposure to hormetic stressors can actually help to extend your lifespan.
4. Improved physical performance
Exposure to hormetic stressors can lead to improved physical performance. This includes increased strength, endurance, and muscular power.
5. Improved health
In general, exposure to hormetic stressors leads to an improvement in overall health. This includes things like a reduced risk of chronic diseases, improved immune function, and increased metabolism.
These are just a few of the many potential benefits of exposure to hormetic stressors. If you are looking for ways to improve your health and well-being, then consider incorporating some hormetic stressors into your life!
Ways you can get started today
Getting started with hormetic stress doesn’t have to be difficult. There are a number of simple things you can do to get started today.
At TH7 Body Labs, we offer contrast therapy, cryotherapy, a traditional and infrared sauna, and a steam room that can help you get started with hormetic stress. Using sophisticated technology and cutting-edge knowledge, our therapies are designed to help you reach your optimal health.
By soaking your body in hot and cold water alternately, you can stimulate your circulation, which in turn will make you feel more alert and improve your ability to focus.
The blood arteries are first narrowed by the ice and then widened by the hot bath. The increased blood flow that results from warming the body kicks off the healing process, boosts neurogenesis and endorphin levels, reduces inflammation, and speeds up recovery.
Whole-body cryotherapy involves brief exposure to sub-zero temperatures (about -110 degrees) in order to promote healing (3 minutes). Cryotherapy challenges the body in a hormetic manner, similar to exercise and high heat (sauna and steam), eliciting responses that go beyond what is necessary to adjust for the exposure.
Studies have shown that cryotherapy helps focus, attention and mental clarity, speeds up their metabolism and immune system, and speeds up their muscle recovery.
Taking regular traditional sauna baths has been linked to a longer life expectancy, better cardiovascular health, less inflammation, faster muscle recovery, and overall body detoxification.
As a means of achieving more muscle relaxation, which in turn promotes greater calmness of mind and body. Reducing inflammation and speeding up healing by increasing endorphin levels and stimulating the formation of new neurons in the brain.
Infrared heat therapy operates on the same principle as natural sunlight, which warms the body with both visible and invisible light.
By penetrating the skin to a depth of 4 to 5 centimeters, infrared light in saunas raises core body temperature. With regular sessions, your cardiovascular system will strengthen, your blood supply to the muscles will increase, your metabolism will be boosted, and you will naturally detox through sweating.
Visitors to historic bathhouses, such as those of the Romans and Greeks, were no strangers to the revitalising effects of steam or sauna.
The usage of steam rooms on a regular basis has been associated with a number of health benefits, including less stress and inflammation, faster muscle recovery, and less pain and inflammation in the joints.
Ready to get started?
Now that you know a little bit more about hormesis and how it can benefit your health, it’s time to get started!
If you’re ready to experience the benefits of hormesis for yourself, then book a session at TH7 Body Labs today. Our friendly and knowledgeable staff will be more than happy to help you get started on your journey to optimal health.