There are so many benefits on using an infrared sauna and listed below are many of the reasons:
The skin is a major detox organ, and sweating through the skin is a critical human detox function, yet most people do not sweat regularly or enough.
Our bodies are very effective at eliminating toxins via the skin, but it only works if we make the body sweat.
These days we are forever in air-conditioned rooms and even the gyms have the air conditioner pumped up so the body isn’t sweating to its full capacity and therefore we have little opportunity to eliminate the toxins.
An infrared sauna helps purify your body from the inside out, eliminating compounds such as, metals and toxins stored in fat cells.
Sweating in a relaxed state is paramount for those with thyroid and adrenal problems, if you have issues with your hormones, slogging it out running is causing you more harm than good.
Growth hormone is crucial for repair and muscle recovery.
Research has shown – having two 20 minute infrared sauna sessions separated by a thirty minute cooling off period elevated growth hormones two-fold over baseline. Cold and exercise combined increase growth hormone, so infrared and cold showers are beneficial.
Recovery benefits – sauna use also increases blood flow to skeletal muscles, which helps keep them fueled with glucose, amino acids, and oxygen while removing by- products of metabolic processes.
Arthritic and muscular pain relief
A study by Dr. H.Isomaki shows that pain relief induced by a sauna was attributed to an increase on the release of anti-inflammatory compounds such as noradrenaline, adrenaline, cortisol, and growth hormones, as well as an increase in positive stress on the body, causing it to release natural pain killing endorphins.
This could be due to the fact that tissues comprised of collagen, such as tendons, fascia, and joint articular capsules, become more flexible when exposed to higher temperatures.
Fat loss and muscle gain
Sauna conditions can promote muscle growth and fat loss by improving insulin sensitivity and decreasing muscle protein catabolism.
If sauna use is three times per week for thirty minutes each session studies have shown insulin levels decrease.
Therefore a reduction in blood glucose levels, then contributes to an increase in muscle growth and an increase in weight control and fat loss.
So if you don’t exercise but use a sauna you can still maintain muscle.
Immune system boost
Increasing your core temperature with saunas can increase the number of white blood cells and other parts of the white blood cell profile, which stimulates the immune system.
German sauna medical research also shows that saunas significantly reduce the incidences of colds and flus, and can lead to 30% less chance of getting colds and flu.
When your body begins to produce sweat via the type of deep sweating you experience in an infrared sauna, the rate at which dead skin cells are replaced can be increased.
At the same, heavy sweating helps remove bacteria from the epidermal layer of the skin and the sweat ducts.
This cleansing of pores also increase capillary circulation, which can give the skin a younger softer looking appearance.
When you sweat, the movement of fluid to the skin delivers more nutrient and mineral rich fluids and helps fill spaces around the cells, increasing firmness and reducing the appearance of wrinkles.
So by continually flushing waste through skin cells via the use of infrared sauna you can increase health, tone, and colour and cleanse pores.
How much have I been rambling about sleep lately!
Researchers have found that sauna use can help improve a deeper, more relaxed sleep and relieve chronic tension and chronic fatigue issues, most likely due to the release of endorphins.
As endorphins are released into your body, they create soothing, nearly tranquilizing effect that can not only help minimize chronic pain caused by arthritis and other muscle soreness, but also help with relaxation and sleep.
Increased cardiovascular performance
Again research has shown that thirty minutes of an infrared sauna treatment after exercise can cause an increase in oxygen consumption and red blood cell production.
Due to the high temperatures, your skin heats up, your core body temperature rises. In response to these increased heat levels, the blood vessels near your skin dilate and cause an increase in cardiac output. Your heart rate can rise from 60-70 bpm to 150 bpm.
So in a sauna you train your heart muscle and your cardiac output plus help your body’s regulatory system move blood around your body to areas that need cooling.
Combining a sauna with cold showers is ideal, it’s known as “hot-cold contrast” conditioning (proven to help aid fat burn!!).
Heart health and longevity
Spending time in a sauna may help keep the heart healthy and extend life.
Studies have been done on people who frequently visit saunas and they have shown lower rates from cardiovascular disease and strokes.
This is likely due to the decrease in blood pressure and increase in blood vessel diameter that both infrared and heat exposure can provide.
An infrared sauna session can burn up to 600 calories equivalent to a 10km run.
The difference being that your body is in a relaxed state – parasympathetic, as opposed to when you are running or exerting your body – you are then in a sympathetic state.
To explain the difference is that when your nervous system is in a sympathetic state it means you are at a “fight and flight” response – your body is trying to survive, so it doesn’t release all of your toxins because it’s holding onto some within your fat cells to help survive.
However if you are releasing toxins in a parasympathetic state “rest and digest”, your body is not freaking out, it doesn’t need to hold onto anything – it’s in cruise mode and therefore will release not only the toxins, but also the stubborn fat!