Background: Whole-body cryostimulation (WBC) is the therapeutic exposure of the total human body (without underwear) to a very low temperature (below -100°C) for 120-180 s. Currently, WBC is used more frequently not only in the treatment of patients suffering from various diseases, but also by healthy people as a wellness method.
Objectives: The aim of this research is to evaluate the impact of WBC procedures on oxidative stress parameters in healthy men.
Material and methods: The study involved 32 healthy male subjects who were randomly divided into 2 groups: 16 men exposed to WBC procedures with subsequent kinesiotherapy (WBC group) and 16 men exposed only to kinesiotherapy procedures (KT group). Depending on the group, the subjects were exposed to 10 daily WBC procedures lasting 3 min, with a subsequent 60-min of kinesiotherapy, or exclusively to kinesiotherapy. In subjects from both groups, a day before the beginning of a cycle of treatment and a day after its completion, the level of selected indicators of oxidative stress and non-enzymatic antioxidants, as well as the activity of antioxidant enzymes in serum, plasma and erythrocyte lysates were determined.
Results: In the WBC group subjects, we recorded a statistically significant decrease in the concentrations of most of the parameters of oxidative stress with an accompanying increase in plasma concentrations of non-enzymatic antioxidants (total antioxidant status and uric acid). We recorded no significant changes in the activities of antioxidant enzymes (plasma total superoxide dismutase (SOD) and its isoenzymes SOD-Mn and SOD-ZnCu, erythrocyte catalase, glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase).
Conclusions: The results we obtained confirmed that WBC decreases oxidative stress in healthy men.
Keywords: antioxidant enzymes; healthy men; non-enzymatic antioxidants; oxidative stress; whole-body cryostimulation.