Discover what generations of people have known for millennia—saunas have the power to soothe mind, body, and spirit. A sweat session relieves stress, soothes sore muscles, flushes toxins, induces deeper sleep, and a whole lot more. Welcome to the good life.
10 Health Benefits of Using a Sauna
Saunas relieve stress.
Saunas relieve stress. Studies have shown that stress can negatively affect health. In fact, stress is suspected to play a role in a variety of diseases from heart disease to depression to infectious diseases. Heat bathing in a sauna provides stress relief in a number of ways. It’s a warm, quiet space without any distractions coming from the outside. The heat from the sauna relaxes the body’s muscles, improves circulation, and stimulates the release of endorphins, the body’s all-natural “feel good” chemical.
Saunas flush toxins.
Saunas flush toxins. Simply by living, each of our bodies accumulate chemical toxins. The good news is that deep sweating in a sauna can help reduce levels of toxins such as arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury. The heat of a sauna causes core body temperature to rise and blood vessels to dilate, causing increased blood flow. The body’s nervous system then sends signals to the millions of sweat glands that cover the human body to produce sweat. That sweat in turn carries a portion of the toxins out of the body.
Saunas relax and soothe aches and pains in muscles and joints.
The high heat of a sauna causes the body to release endorphins, which—along with making you feel good—help minimize the pain of arthritis and muscle soreness. It also causes body temperature to rise, which in turn causes blood vessels to dilate, increasing blood circulation. This increased blood flow speeds up the body’s natural healing process. After a workout, use the heat and/or steam of a sauna to promote muscle relaxation, reduce muscle tension, and eliminate lactic acid and/or other toxins that may be present.
Saunas cleanse the skin.
Heat bathing is one of the oldest beauty and health strategies to clean and invigorate skin. Sweating rinses bacteria out of the epidermal layer of skin and sweat ducts. Cleansing of the pores has been shown to improve the capillary circulation, while giving the skin a softer-looking quality. Fewer toxins like bacteria mean fewer clogged pores, which mean smoother skin.
Saunas can induce a deeper sleep.
Research has shown that a deeper, more relaxed sleep can result from sauna use. Sauna use enhances the natural rise and fall of body temperature that occurs naturally before bed. It’s no wonder numerous sauna bathers worldwide recall deep sleep experiences after bathing in the calming heat of a sauna.
Saunas improve cardiovascular performance.
Saunas improve cardiovascular performance. The heat of a traditional or infrared sauna causes core body temperature to rise. In response, blood vessels near the skin dilate and “cardiac output” increases. Research has shown that with regular sauna usage, individuals can train heart muscles, improve heart rate/cardiac output, and help the body’s regulatory system.
Saunas burn calories.
The sweating process requires a notable amount of energy. That energy is derived from the conversion of fat and carbohydrates in a bodily process that burns up calories. According to U.S. Army medical research (Ward Dean, M.D.), “A moderately conditioned person can easily sweat off 500 grams in a sauna in a single session, consuming nearly 300 calories in the process.” The body consumes calories due to the acceleration of heart activity. As heart activity increases, the body begins to convert more calories into usable energy.
Saunas can help fight illness.
Saunas help fight illness and reduce the incidences of colds and influenza amongst participants. As the body is exposed to the heat of a sauna and steam, it produces white blood cells more rapidly, which in turn helps fight illnesses and helps kill viruses. In addition, saunas can relieve the uncomfortable symptoms of sinus congestion–especially when used with steam.
Pro Tip: Add eucalyptus to the water for added benefit and overall enjoyment.
Saunas just feel good.
A sauna not only feels good, it’s good for your body. Whether it’s the physiological changes that occur during the warmth of a sauna or simply the time spent in the calming and still retreat of the sauna, every seasoned sauna bather agrees – it feels wonderful!
Saunas can boost energy levels by reducing CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome).
Symptoms of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome are highly variable and fluctuate in severity, and treatment can be complex. Some researchers believe that these sufferers struggle with toxic build-up. Of infrared saunas, Dr. Michael R. Lyon says: “For the chronic fatigue patient, a consistent program of infrared sauna therapy will assist the problem of autonomic dysregulation, which is common to the condition. Symptoms of autonomic dysregulation are muscle pain, digestive problems, visual disturbances, and dizziness. These symptoms are reduced, as regular sauna therapy induces normal autonomic functioning. Through extensive research, it has been shown that saunas greatly assist in the elimination of accumulated toxins.”