The Benefits Of Infrared Sauna has been used to help heal the body for thousands of years. Ancient Chinese, Native Americans and Eastern Europeans use “hot air baths for detoxification.
Over the years, many different forms of heat therapy been used to treat a wide variety of health issues. Studies recently found how this therapy could benefit symptoms such as pain, fatigue, depression, high blood pressure, and more.
Infrared saunas are a type of sauna that uses heat and lights to help detoxify and relax that body. They produce light waves that create heat in the body, causing you to sweat and release toxins. It is believed that infrared saunas cause a parasympathetic healing effect, which means it helps your body handle stress better.
What is striking about these types of saunas is that they differ from the “regular” sauna because their light directly penetrates the skin but does not warm the air around you. The body temperature goes up quickly but the light has no effect on your environment. This is a good use for someone that may not tolerate very high heats of other dry saunas or even steam rooms.
Traditional Saunas Vs Infrared Saunas
Traditional saunas have either wood stoves or electric heaters that heat the air to about 160-210 degrees Fahrenheit. The humidity is about 10-20 percent. You would usually stay in these saunas for 5-20 minutes. The heat of the sauna will only penetrate the skin by a couple of millimeters.
Infrared saunas are heated 104-140 degrees Fahrenheit. They heat the body directly versus using air like the way to create the heat. The heat is deeper and works up a more of a sweat than the traditional sauna.
Infrared saunas reach about 3-4 centimeters into the fat tissue and neuromuscular system. This provides a much more calming experience. The body also does not have to do more work in order to receive benefits.
Different Types of Infrared
There are three types of infrared saunas, far-infrared, middle-infrared and near infrared. These differentiate from the wavelengths of the infrared radiation.
1. Far Infrared is the most known and helps with deep detoxification and weight loss.
2. Middle Infrared helps reduce pain and helps address inflammation.
3. Near Infrared helps with skin renewal and wound healing.
Infrared Sauna Benefits
Researchers believe infrared saunas have the natural ability to lower inflammation, act similarly to an antioxidant nutrient, activate the cells, helps with wound healing, boost metabolism, help remove toxins from the body and more. Some benefits are:
- Relaxation and Stress Relief
- Detoxification and Cellular Health
- Pain Relief
- Circulation Improvement
- Weight Loss
- Improves Heart Function
- Skin Cleansing/ Anti- Aging
- Lowers Blood Pressure
- Wound Healing
- Lowers The Effects Of Diabetes
- Improves Overall Health And Well-Being
Relaxation and Stress Relief
This is a great way to keep your adrenals functioning properly. The sympathetic nervous system responds to stress in the body caused by its temperature rising. When a person is in the sauna, the norepinephrine levels rise, but the body’s stress hormones (epinephrine and cortisol) does not.
Beta-endorphins increase and that is what makes it feel so pleasurable. This causes the muscles to relax and releases any tension from the body. This causes the body’s parasympathetic system to kick in. When you are completely relaxed, your body is able to heal.
Saunas Help With Detoxification
Our skin is our largest organ and sweating is a great way to detoxify the toxins from your body. This helps with your liver since your liver is an organ that helps detoxify the body. Toxins build up from the food we eat, the chemicals we apply to our body, heavy metals, pesticides and more.
Toxins tend to store deep inside our organs and when sitting in the saunas, we release these toxins slowly. Removing this harmful buildup helps us absorb our nutrients, have more energy and allow our body to regenerate properly.
The heat from the infrared sauna works by penetrating joints, muscles and tissues, increasing circulation, and generating more oxygen flow to injured areas of the body. The heat flushes out lactic acid helping muscles to loosen reducing soreness, minor aches, stiff muscles, and muscle spasms.
If you have any joint pain, infrared saunas are known for its natural pain relief. The warming of the muscles soothes the pains and aches. Infrared saunas can help people with a thyroid condition, suffering from fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, migraines, arthritis or joint pain.
Your blood flow will increase at a rate of 68 percent after 15 minutes in the sauna. In addition, if you have hypothyroid issues, it will increase body temperature. Infrared sauna therapy dilates blood vessels and reduced the volume of their inner lining, thus increasing circulation to promote healthy blood pressure.
Fight Off Infection
Some women get frequent UTI’s (urinary tract infections) while others experience sinus or throat infections. During a 30-minute session, your body temperature will increase by 3 degrees. The increase in body temperature increases your white blood cell function helping your body fight infections.
Our body will become inflamed when it senses an illness or threat to your immune system. This is how your body keeps healthy and stable. The problem starts to arise when the inflammation becomes chronic.
Most people that have an autoimmune condition have a chronic amount of inflammation. Using near-infrared saunas help reduce inflammation in the body.
Improves Heart Function
A review by the Department of Family Practice at the University of British Columbia found that infrared sauna treatment help with normalizing blood pressure, cholesterol levels and treating heart failure.
Tips to Know
1. Start with 5-10 minutes once per week at a temperature of 105°F and slowly work your way up to 20-minute sessions.
2. After one month of safely doing a 20-minute session and feeling great afterward, you can go up to two sessions per week.
3. You will want to use the infrared sauna daily to get the most benefit.
4. If you feel comfortable, you can slowly increase the temperature to as high as 140°F.
5. If you feel light-headed or unwell, get out.
6. You are supposed to feel better after using the infrared sauna, not worse.
7. Remember to stay hydrated.
Who Should Use Infrared Saunas?
Some studies have shown the benefits of infrared sauna therapy for people with:
- Cardiovascular Disease
- High Blood Pressure
- Congestive Heart Failure
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Chronic Fatigue
- Poor Digestion
- Depression & Anxiety
- Chronic Muscle & Joint Pains
- Thyroid conditions
Those That Should Not Use A Sauna
- Are on certain medications (check with your doctor)
- Are someone who’s prone to bleeding
- Have a fever
- Have a heart condition
- Are menstruating
- Have breast implants