Are you a bath person? If so, you're getting more perks out of having a soak than you may realise. The next time you run a hot tub, prepare to reap these benefits.
First off, it eases your mind and relieves stress. After a busy day at work it can be an escape to sit in the warmth of the water and unwind. As your body temperature goes up, endogenous opioid peptides are released. These are short sequences of amino acids that bind receptors in the brain, creating a sensation similar to that triggered by endorphins. This explains why you feel so relaxed when you bathe!
The more laidback you are, the better sleep you'll get. We've all heard the reports that a cool room temperature aids a good night's rest and while a hot bath will see your body get warmer, it will also allow your blood vessels to dilate. As a result, your core temperature drops, making you feel cool and breezy when you get into bed.
When it's chilly outside, bad circulation may kick in. A bath will put pressure on your body, causing the heart to pump more to get blood around the body. You're bound to step out of the water feeling more sensations than when you got in!
Another great perk of the tub is that it can aid weight loss, as a previous study linked a regular soak helped people suffering from diabetes by reducing their glucose and sugar levels. An impressive 2.5 pounds a month was lost by those who had a bath lasting 20-30 minutes six times a week.
And for those who complain that having a bath is like 'sitting in your own dirt', take this into account - when your skin is fully damp, you're able to be much more moisturised. Try to air dry for a few minutes when you step out then apply a good body cream, as this is the best time for it to absorb.