Tuesday Tips – Icing & Injuries- Vol 4

We’ve all heard it before – Put some ICE on it! However, I never could stand ice on my injuries, and preferred to put a bit of heat on it instead, then put a bit of ice when it was too much, then back to heat, which when I’d mention this to an ‘expert’ I was told this was wrong and don’t do it. (NGL, I still totally did it cause it worked for me and I found I had better results). Well, apparently some scientists had the same conclusions and started testing this on mice, and proved their point of view!

They put the mice through an electrically stimulated workout, which basically caused their calf muscles to contract repeatedly, thus replicating a tough leg gym workout. They then took samples from all the mice, then applied ice to half of the mice.

The end result? By the third day, the mice who didn’t receive the ice, experienced a faster pro-inflammatory response, and most of the damaged fibers had been cleared away! This allowed the anti-inflammatory process to begin and after two weeks, the muscles were FULLY HEALED! On the other hand, those who did receive the ice took SEVEN days to get the fibers cleared, and after two weeks, they still weren’t fully healed.

So why did this happen? Well, it has to do with how muscles heal, and I’ve quoted the article I’ve gotten this information below:

According to the Journal of Sports Medicine, after a strenuous workout or an injury your body sends pro-inflammatory immune cells to the damaged area to help remove cellular debris and damaged bits of tissue. Following that, your body sends in anti-inflammatory cells to help regenerate your muscle. The anti-inflammatory phase is relatively short but very important for proper muscle recovery. Of course, because it typically comes with a bit of pain and swelling, we naturally regarded it as a bad thing, which is why for years we’ve been told to apply ice to the affected area.

Original Article

I do suggest you give the article a full read, but the summed up version is that Ice, which slows molecules down, also slows down our healing process. It is only suggested to use this method if you can’t handle the pain of the healing process, but keep in mind you’re only hindering the healing process, not helping it as once previously thought. I guess it goes to show no pain NO GAIN!

Hope this helps!

Much loves – #Stayawesome – SarahTonin

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