The Health Benefits of Far Infrared Saunas
Have you heard about the health benefits of far infrared saunas? Do they sound too good to be true? Weight loss, pain relief, detoxification, blood pressure reduction, and improved circulation just to name a few. Let’s look at what infrared saunas are and how they work. I got one for my birthday last year mainly for the healing benefits after my five months of chemo and I can tell you that it definitely helped me feel better and get through the cold rainy season in the Pacific Northwest!
While other saunas use hot rocks, steam or dry heat to warm the air in the room to high temperatures causing you to sweat, an infrared sauna produces longer invisible infrared energy waves that are felt as heat in the body causing you to sweat. The infrared light permeates your skin to warm you so the temperature doesn’t need to be as high. On the energy spectrum, infrared waves are further categorized as far infrared (FIR), mid infrared (MIR), and near infrared (NIR). The far infrared light is showing to be the most effective for optimal detoxification.
Many studies have been done on the benefits of far infrared light for conditions such as chronic heart failure, diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis. According to the NCBI, far infrared saunas have been shown to:
- Improve cardiac and vascular function and reduce oxidative stress in patients with chronic heart failure
- Enhance physical and general health, social functioning, stress, and fatigue in patients suffering from type II diabetes
- Reduce pain, stiffness, and fatigue
While research is still being done on what is looking to be many health benefits, far infrared saunas are proving to be safe and powerful. The research is showing them to not only be helping people feel better and more relaxed, but also include anti-aging benefits, increased detoxification, pain reduction, joint and muscle support, and cardiovascular healing. Additionally, they’re believed to help the body handle stress better — one day they may be used for to help with other stress related problems like insomnia and depression or hormonal imbalances and autoimmune disorders.
The main method the sauna achieves these benefits is by sweating. Sweating is the body’s way of releasing toxins through it’s largest organ, the skin. Any way we can to achieve the releasing of impurities like heavy metals and chemicals that we absorb throughout the day is a good thing.
As I said earlier, there is also something about the heat that is mood boosting. It really helped me get through the dark and dreary days of winter last year. In fact, I didn’t even notice that it had apparently been one of the wettest winters in recent history! I look forward to using my sauna again this winter as part of my personal wellness routine.
If you’re new to infrared saunas, I would recommend starting out with 5 minutes at 130-150 degrees Fahrenheit and slowly working your way up to 15 to 30 minute sessions. And don’t despair if an infrared sauna is not available—you can get some detoxification with a regular sauna with 10 to 20 minutes at 180-190 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you’re wondering what to get or where to get one, I’m happy to share that I’ve partnered with the best brand out there to recommend to you! Sunlighten produces the top infrared saunas in this industry. Visit their website here and be sure to tell them I referred you!