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Natural Awakenings Indianapolis

Polar Plunge for Health and a Cause

Feb 12, 2014 06:48PM

A wintertime swim in cold water might not sound like fun, but there are health benefits associated with such plunges. Cold water is a mild stressor that activates the immune system, boosts white blood cell and endorphin production, and releases dopamine and serotonin–the neurotransmitters responsible for fighting depression. Experiencing it can also support a worthy cause as Special Olympics Indiana will hold polar plunges throughout the state, including one on March 1 at Eagle Creek Reservoir.

Event participants raise funds for the organization, have the opportunity to win a costume contest judged by Miss Indiana USA and Miss Indiana Teen USA, and enjoy food and other refreshments after the exhilarating experience.

Switching from hot to cold also improves blood circulation, flushing impurities and improving complexion. Some women even swear by this method for reducing cellulite. Studies show that cold showers and dips produce testosterone and estrogen, thus improving sex drive. Also, when the body is cold, it has to work that much harder to keep it warm, burning even more calories.

Location: 7840 W 56th St., Indianapolis. Registration at 8 a.m.; Costume Contest at 9:45 a.m.; Plunge at 10:30 a.m. Requested minimum contribution of $75 ($50 minimum for students with ID). For more information and registration, visit SOIndiana.org/special-events/2014-polar-plunge.
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