Ahhh heat….infrared saunas and the benefits

It’s been awhile. I have no excuses…just been slacking. But I hope to make it up to you all with this post.

So tonight as I was relaxing in my infrared sauna I was thinking “I should do a blog post on this….why haven’t I yet?!”

About a year ago, my husband and I decided to invest in an infrared sauna after reading about the benefits. Of course there’s many options for home saunas- a diy steam room, a sauna in the back yard, and then what we did, purchasing an infrared sauna. We decided on the latter because it’s really what fits us best health wise (more on that in a minute), it was more affordable (seriously) then building our own, and for us it is more practical and gets more use being in our basement opposed to outdoors.

So. Now. To the good stuff and not just me rambling.

What are the benefits of infrared saunas?

  1. Infrared sauna has been shown to lower oxidative stress (an imbalance of free radicals and antioxidants in your body). A 2010 study showed the use of infrared dry sauna to reduce the markers for oxidative stress in cardiovascular patients.
  2. They increase your endurance and exercise performance. Another study from 2007 showed post workout sauna use (regardless of steam or dry heat saunas such as infrared) to increase athletes overall endurance and performance over a 3 week period.
  3. Infrared saunas improve mood. Remember that study done on oxidative stress I mentioned first? Yep…still important. Another study, done on patients who suffer with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome showed marked improvement in mood, decreased anxiety, and increase in overall energy. This is thought to have something to do with the overall reduction in oxidative stress the infrared sauna provides.
  4. Infrared sauna helps speed up detoxification. Now, this isn’t to say that it’s this cure all detoxifying magical box…but there has been studies which indicate the use of saunas promote heavy sweating which helps rid the body of industrial toxins such as heavy metals and pesticides at a rate higher then urination.
  5. In men- use of a sauna 4 to 7 times weekly reduces risk of sudden cardiac death and all cause mortality. It has also been shown to decrease the overall risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in men according to this study ….this is presumed to be due to the overall cardiovascular benefits of sauna use.
  6. Infrared sauna is generally considered safe for those with cardiovascular issues. Of course, I’ll throw in my disclaimer here that I am not a doctor and you should ALWAYS talk to your doctor first! But this is why we decided to go with am infrared sauna. My husband has had some heart issues and because infrared is considered safe we decided this is the way to go. Traditional steam saunas tend to increase temperature from the outside in, whereas infrared is the opposite. Because of this, with infrared, you are able to start sweating at a lower temperature then a steam sauna which tends to cause less stress for those who have heart issues.
  7. It reduces joint and muscular pain. This study reviews the improvement of the perception of pain in individuals who have chronic pain diseases. Speaking for myself, I feel my sauna has been a lifesaver in this department.

Of course there are more benefits to using an infrared sauna then I’ve mentioned above…but I think this gives you an idea to start with of what sorts of benefits it could have.

So now, for you…have you used an infrared sauna? Comment below and tell me about your experience!

Until next time,

Jenn

3 Replies to “Ahhh heat….infrared saunas and the benefits”

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