The Healing Powers of the Sea

The Healing Powers of the Sea
I just returned from Iceland where in the last 5-10 years the biggest ongoing craze has been swimming in the sea. For those of us in the US, that might seem uninteresting since swimming in the sea is very common here and practiced year round in many places.

But, what if I told you the sea temperature in Iceland ranges from 39°F in the coldest months to a high of 50°F in the warmest months. That is a cold swim! So why do people do it? What is the attraction and what are the health benefits?

One of the many beneficial minerals found in the sea, is Iodine. Iodine boosts thyroid function and helps the body fight infections. A dip in cold ocean water also increases the elasticity of the skin and improves circulation, which helps the body to carry blood to all its vital organs.

The Icelandic community of people who swim in the ocean on a regular basis swear by it, and you often hear things like “I haven’t had a cold or the flu since I started swimming in the sea.”

There are so many positives, and virtually nothing negative related to swimming in cold sea water. Of course, one must be careful. The communities that swim together watch out for one another, making sure not to swim in dangerous areas, where the water is too deep, current too strong, or without someone accompanying. All safety issues are checked before entering the water to be sure that the experience is a very positive one for all.

Other very powerful benefits:

  • Enhances recovery after exercise
  • Heightens alertness and mental clarity
  • Boosts metabolism and weight loss
  • Elevates mood and reduces stress
  • Strengthens resilience and willpower
  • Enhances sleep quality

My astrological sign is Cancer and I just recently discovered that I am a triple water sign—and I love living or being around water. I have tried cold plunges and swimming in Iceland in the cold sea, and although incredibly difficult at first, it is extremely rewarding. To get over the difficult “hump” it’s important to practice a breathing technique to relax your body from the state of shock you receive from the cold. Once you master that, the world is your oyster.

Join in—take the plunge! The benefits are endless, and your body will thank you later.