Both traditional saunas and infrared saunas offer a fantastic way to relax, unwind and detox your body. But unlike their traditional counterparts, infrared saunas come with a number of added benefits. This is because infrared saunas don’t heat the air around you, but rather they rely on infrared lamps to provide their benefits, which means that you can experience a number of added benefits without having to stay inside for longer periods of time. But what exactly are infrared saunas? And what are the benefits of owning one?
This article will explain everything you need to know about infrared saunas, including their benefits and why you should definitely consider buying one.
What is an Infrared Sauna?
Traditional saunas rely on using hot rocks and steam to heat up a cabin and provide you with various health and relaxation benefits. Infrared saunas do much the same thing; only instead of relying on steam, infrared saunas use the infrared light spectrum to heat the cabin and provide their benefits.
Anyone who has ever used a sauna will tell you that they are a great way to relax and unwind, but they’ll also tell you that it’s hard to stay in the sauna for very long because the heat can simply be too much.
This is where infrared saunas win out over traditional saunas. Infrared saunas deliver their heat using light rather than steam, and the infrared light is resulting in a more comfortable experience and many more lasting benefits.
But what exactly are the benefits of using an infrared sauna? Well, there are many but let’s go over a few of the best and most important ones.
The Benefits of Using an Infrared Sauna
As mentioned, there are many health and lifestyle benefits that you’ll enjoy when using an infrared sauna. Keep in mind that this list is in no way exhaustive, and there are many additional benefits to using infrared saunas not listed here. However, these are the main reasons to use an infrared sauna that you’ll certainly enjoy.
1. Infrared Saunas Can Improve Blood Circulation
When you sit in an infrared sauna, your heart rate can increase by as much as 70%, which is roughly equal to the heart rate increase you get when working out. In other words, just by sitting in an infrared sauna, your heart is getting a cardio workout which has been shown to increase blood flow circulation, which can improve your overall heart health significantly.
2. Infrared Saunas Can Lower Your Stress Levels
Infrared saunas can reduce your overall cortisol levels, which is a hormone often associated with stress and anxiety. When you first sit in the sauna, your stress levels can rise as your body adjusts to the increase in temperature. Still, over the long run, saunas reduce overall cortisol levels, which means that a 20- or 30-minute session can leave you feeling happier and less stressed out and may even help combat the symptoms of depression.
An infrared sauna can also help you to reduce stress by providing you with a place to relax, unwind and focus on self-care. Other health benefits, such as improved sleep patterns and less physical pain, can also contribute to stress management.
3. Infrared Saunas Can Help You Detox
When you sit in an infrared sauna, you will sweat a lot due to the heat. As you sweat, your body releases harmful toxins that would otherwise remain in your system. There are various types of toxins that accumulate in the body, and infrared saunas don’t eliminate all of them, but sitting in an infrared sauna can help remove a number of different types of toxins, including PCB’s, PFC’s, PCDF’s, and PCDD’s, along with pesticides and mercury.
4. Infrared Saunas Can Boost Your Energy Levels
Infrared saunas can increase your blood volume by as much as 7%, which may not sound like a lot, but it’s actually a very significant number. By having more blood in your system, you will have more red blood cells, which transfer oxygen to your brain and vital organs. Over time, with regular use, the effect can be even greater, leading to improved organ function and greater oxygenation throughout your body, which can translate into higher overall energy levels throughout the day.
5. Infrared Saunas Can Help You Lose Weight
As mentioned, sitting in an infrared sauna increases your heart rate in the same way as cardiovascular exercise does, which means that a sauna session can result in you burning calories in much the same way as going to the gym can. In fact, a long sauna session can result in you burning as many as 600 calories which is indeed significant.
However, keep in mind that much of the weight lost during sauna sessions is water, and only a small percentage is fat. Nevertheless, it’s a great way to complement your exercise sessions and contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
6. Infrared Saunas Can Boost Your Immune System
Sitting in a sauna increases your blood volume, resulting in more red blood cells and more white blood cells. White blood cells are the foundation of your body’s immune system, and it is white blood cells that attack harmful bacteria and viruses in the body. Therefore, by sitting in a sauna regularly, you can strengthen your immune system, increasing your overall health while decreasing the odds of you getting sick with a common cold.
7. Infrared Saunas Can Soothe Sore Joints
Your joints will also feel better after using a sauna. The effect isn’t long-lasting and there is no research available on the long-term effects of infrared saunas on joint health, but the symptoms of osteoarthritis and joint stiffness are reduced in the short term after a sauna session, meaning that if you feel particularly stiff and sore, then sitting in a sauna for a few minutes may be just the thing you need in order to feel better immediately.
8. Infrared Saunas Can Improve Your Breathing
Infrared saunas do a great job of cleaning out your nose and sinuses. Those who suffer from allergic rhinitis or who are otherwise chronically congested often find immediate and lasting relief after sitting in a sauna for 30-60 minutes. Other sinus-related symptoms can also be positively combatted by using an IR sauna, including a runny nose and sneezing. By helping you clear your sinuses, saunas can lead to overall better breathing, which is, of course, great for your respiratory system, and overall health.
9. Infrared Saunas Can Improve the Appearance of Your Skin
Because infrared saunas encourage sweating, they are also a great way to remove dead skin cells and other debris that can lead to clogged pores, pimples, and blemishes. Also, because of the improved blood circulation, you’ll enjoy when using a sauna, you’ll also have a healthier skin tone, skin texture, and skin elasticity. In other words, when you use a sauna on a regular basis, your skin will look healthier overall.
10. Infrared Saunas Can Help You Relax and Sleep Better
Ultimately, if you ask people why they love saunas, they will tell you that it’s because saunas are super relaxing. This is true whether you use an Iinfrared sauna or traditional hot rocks and steam sauna. Saunas, in general, stimulate the parasympathetic system, which in turn relaxes your body and promotes healthy sleep. That said, you should take care not to fall asleep in a sauna as this can lead to negative effects such as being burned, for example, but by sitting in a sauna for 10-20 minutes a few times per week, you will find that you are sleeping better and are more relaxed throughout the day.
Infrared Saunas at Lifestyle Outdoor
Saunas, in general, are great for your overall health and well-being. Infrared saunas, in particular, are an excellent way to relax, unwind, and rejuvenate, but they also bestow a number of fantastic health benefits such as:
- Improved blood circulation
- Lower stress and anxiety levels
- Higher energy levels
- A strengthened Immune system
- Reduced inflammation in sore joints
- Weight loss
- Improved breathing
- Healthier looking skin
- And higher-quality sleep
Before using an infrared sauna, or a traditional sauna for that matter, you should consult with your physician to ensure that it will contribute to, complement and enhance your best health.