April showers bring health benefits

Cathleen Kronemer, NSCA-CPT, Certified Health Coach, is a longtime fitness instructor at the Jewish Community Center. 

By Cathleen Kronemer

Spring is here — finally — and with it comes the more than occasional rainstorm. I grew up repeating the adage “April Showers Bring May Flowers”, as did many of us; and when the buds and new blossoms begin to show their colorful heads from beneath the warming soil, the true benefit of the excess moisture can be evidenced and enjoyed!

As it turns out, rain water can do much more than help our gardens grow. Over the course of several million years, Mother Nature’s water cycle has produced a perfect specimen of hydration.  Trapped by the atmosphere, moisture is constantly being used and reused, going through its cycle of evaporation and transpiration.  It gathers as clouds and then falls back to earth to be used again. Each time that water is evaporated from the seas and oceans around the world, it is cleansed. Pollutants are left behind as the moisture rises skyward to once again form rain clouds and repeat the process.

The result is a wonderfully soft water product.  The lack of minerals in rain water allow for more prudent washing of both our hair and skin. Soft, pollutant-free water helps shampoos lather more effectively, giving hair a shiny appearance.  Similarly, skin cleanses with a brighter radiance.  Soft water rinses more easily, leaving less soap residue on the face and the body.  Over time, skin will feel more supple, as soap residue tends to produce a drying effect.

Collecting rain water is an easy process.  A bucket or a barrel placed in the yard will work perfectly well.  Rain water is best when used promptly upon collection, so plan accordingly.  At this time of year, this precious natural resource is usually available in abundance, so if you miss one storm, rest assured another shower will soon be forthcoming!  Of course, for the more adventurous among us, it is always fun to pour on the shampoo and simply dance in the rain!