Infrared Saunas are gaining tremendous momentum in the medical community currently, due to the host of verifiable health benefits they provide. The fact that they provide these benefits in an environment that is easy for just about anyone to use, makes them a great option for people almost any age or medical condition. Here, we have the top 7 health benefits of sauna for your reference.
“Give me the power to create a fever, and I shall cure any disease.” – Hippocrates, father of modern medicine
There is almost no part or function in the body that does not benefit meaningfully from improved circulation.
7 Top Benefits of Sauna
I. HEAT – Heat relaxes and loosens the muscles. It dilates the blood vessels making it easier for blood to flow through the body and for the body’s healing functions to work at their best. The dilated blood vessels cause blood pressure to drop since the heart no longer needs to work with maximum effort to move blood.
All of this lends itself to a host of benefits that relieve sore muscles, stiffness, joint pain, arthritic pain, and more. This heat also stimulates the body to expel toxins. These toxins include heavy metals, sodium, alcohol, nicotine, cholesterol, and more.
- Supporting Resources
- Wikipedia, Heat Therapy, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_therapy
- Wikipedia, Vasodilation (effects of dilated blood vessels), http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vasodilation
- Spine Health, Benefits of Heat Therapy, http://www.spine-health.com/treatment/heat-therapy-cold-therapy/benefits-heat-therapy-lower-back-pain
II. WEIGHT LOSS – The increased heart rate that comes with the heat, burns calories and promotes a healthy heart. Remember that this is all happening while the blood pressure is lower so the heart is not under duress. A normal 30-45 minute session in an infrared sauna will burn somewhere between 600-1000 calories. That is at least twice as much as the 300 calories that a person would expect to burn if they were to run for that long.
A common misconception about Saunas and weight loss is that you can immediately lose weight after using your sauna. This not true. No more than immediately losing weight after a run. Sure, you will be a few pounds lighter because you sweat out water, but that’s not long term.
However, the higher calorie burn we talk about does contribute to slow, long term, fat burning. It is not a weight loss miracle, its calorie burning and fat metabolizing. Ideally, everyone should mix in regular exercise to build strength, stamina, and flexibility.
- Supporting Sources
- My Fat Loss Experience, Sauna Weight Loss: Losing Weight By Sweating,http://www.my-fat-loss-experience.com/facts/understanding-sauna-weight-loss-is-it-sustainable-long-term
- EHow, How to Lose Weight in a Sauna, http://www.ehow.com/how_2105350_lose-weight-sauna.html
- Weight Loss For All, Sauna Can Burn Extra Calories, http://www.weightlossforall.com/losing-weight-sauna-x.htm
III. BETTER OVERALL WELLNESS – If your body is being prompted on a daily, or even weekly, basis to expel most of the toxins that otherwise would continue to reside in your system, your body’s systems and functions will run more smoothly and efficiently. You will have greater balance across multiple bodily systems.
IV. DETOXIFICATION – Known as hyperthermia, heat therapy, sweat therapy, or fever therapy, it is a function of the body to cleanse and heal itself using heat. Our bodies create a fever for two purposes: A) the increased body temperature can make the body an inhabitable host for certain infections, and B) the body will literally sweat out toxins and disease.
Although, today, fevers are thought of as an inconvenient symptom, they are actually the body’s own mechanism for fighting illness. By “creating” an artificially high internally temperature for a temporary time (15-45 minutes), you can reap some of these benefits. Heat draws out toxins, cleans clogged pores, and kills a variety of harmful bacteria. The increased circulation also benefits the immune system, cellular activity, and even increases the metabolic rate.
- Supporting Sources
- The Natural Path, Hyperthermia – Body Detox and Cleansing Using Body Heat, http://www.the-natural-path.com/hyperthermia.html
- SKIN HEALTH – The body’s skin will benefit greatly by using an infrared sauna. As the body is heated and perspires to cool off (and expel those toxins), the pores of the skin are being put to work and expel oils that otherwise clog the pores, causing acne or deterioration. Not to mention the benefits of increased circulation to the skin, along with everywhere else. As a result, you can expect to experience healthier skin, with better tone and texture to boot!
- Supporting Sources
- Ezine Articles, Sauna for Skin Cleansing by Sandra Kim Leong, http://ezinearticles.com/?Skin-Cleansing-Using-Sauna&id=343217
- Science 2.0, It’s Official: Sauna Is Good For your Skin (And It’s A Sport),http://www.science20.com/science_20/its_official_sauna_good_your_skin_and_its_sport
- Supporting Sources
V. COLLAGEN PRODUCTION – Regular use of an infrared sauna will stimulate the production of collagen. Collagen is the essential protein in the body that is used to repair and replace damaged tissue. Increased collagen production will decrease scar tissue at the site of an injury, along with other benefits. It is the substance that holds cells together with a high degree of elasticity.
VI. INCREASE IN CELLULAR REACTION – Infrared Sauna use has been shown to stimulate the release of ATP in the blood. ATP provides the chemical energy that drives the chemical reaction of the cell. Increased ATP wills cells to more readily accept nutrients and expel waste.
VII. STRESS RELIEF – Let’s not forget the very obvious. Almost everyone that uses a sauna will report one thing first: That they were more relaxed at the end of their session. This is more than “feel good” benefit. Daily outlets for relaxation and stress relief have been shown to very directly affect a host of health issues. This list is literally too long to write out. So, if nothing else, take 30 minutes a day to relax in your infrared sauna. You’d be glad you did.