You would be justified in thinking I am obsessed with whole body cryotherapy (WBC) and weight loss. I have written about it in this space at least twice before: here and here. But try this little experiment. Go to the Google search page and type in “whole body cryotherapy for…” The search engine will create a drop-down menu including about a dozen currently popular searches related to whole body cryotherapy. “Whole body cryotherapy for weight loss” is at the top of the list.
Clearly, there’s a lot of interest out there in whether WBC can cause weight loss. But then, I suspect there’s a lot of interest in whether anything can cause weight loss. Let me end the suspense right here. A single session of WBC is not going to show any change on your bathroom scale.
A New Study
Nevertheless, WBC could have a role to play in your weight loss program. And the reason I am writing about this topic again is because there is research on it that has been published since the last time I wrote about it. In August of last year, Journal of Clinical Medicine published a report by Polish scientists titled “Whole-Body Cryotherapy Is an Effective Method of Reducing Abdominal Obesity in Menopausal Women with Metabolic Syndrome.”
You can guess the results of their study from its title. But here are the particulars. They studied 37 menopausal women with low to moderate activity levels: 18 healthy women and 19 women with metabolic syndrome. Each study participant got a 3-minute WBC treatment every day for 20 days. “In both groups, body mass (BM), BMI, abdominal circumference, triceps skinfold, total fat mass and percentage of leg fat significantly decreased after 20 WBC sessions. Additionally, the percentage of total, trunk and android fat in the [metabolic syndrome] group were significantly decreased after 20 WBC applications. Waist circumference (WC) and waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) significantly decreased in both groups, and in the [healthy women] group, hip circumference and abdominal skinfold also significantly decreased after 10 WBC and 20 WBC treatments.”
Much of the paper was given over to the technical mechanisms of the weight loss — changing blood levels of different chemicals and proteins. I won’t go into that part because from our perspective, the chemistry is eclipsed by the physical changes in the women’s bodies. Without doubt, WBC reduces fat in menopausal women, provided they get 20 consecutive daily treatments. Whether it works with fewer treatments, we cannot say, at least until somebody does a shorter study.
WBC’s success against metabolic syndrome is particularly exciting. Metabolic syndrome is a from of central obesity closely associated with cardiovascular risk, insulin resistance, and prediabetes. So it’s more than just a cosmetic issue; it’s a serious health risk. It affects about 25% of the American adult population, a proportion that increases with age.
Whole Body Cryotherapy for Weight Management
For a healthy life, you want to avoid metabolic syndrome. But if you already have it, you may need to take dramatic steps to try to reverse it. Those steps would be based on diet and exercise. If your doctor thinks you need more short-term action, ask about WBC.
The study is most important if you’re a menopausal woman. WBC may help you in the fight against menopausal weight gain. The study doesn’t really prove anything for the rest of us. But I would speculate that, even if you’re not a menopausal woman, WBC can help to keep your weight control program on track. It might at least keep it from being more difficult than it has to be. While all the participants in the study were menopausal, note that the healthy women group got real results after only 10 days.
Book a few daily sessions of WBC with us, and see if it helps you with weight control.