If one must really know, the popularity of saunas has come a little too late to the party. Since it got introduced by the Finnish people decades ago, only a fraction of its benefits has only come into the spotlight. But thanks to gymnasiums and other fitness platforms, the numerous advantages of relaxing into sauna rooms have now surfaced. However, one particular type of sauna the recently-introduced infrared saunas haven’t gone up to that realm yet. This article is specially written to reveal the benefits of infrared sauna on our skin and to your health, ultimately.
If you’re just new in town and just trying to know whether an infrared sauna will do you good, consider this discussion as a godsend. But before we get into the nitty-gritty of its benefits, let’s discuss first what an infrared sauna is!
Infrared Sauna in a Nutshell
For someone like me who is almost uninitiated in this fitness regimen, I have often wondered how this type of sauna operates. For you to know how it really functions, it’s crucial that you understand what an infrared light is. Essentially, this is what we technically experience as heat, the invisible part of the sun’s spectrum. This ray of heat cannot be seen but can be felt as a warmth of sunshine on our skin.
In infrared saunas, the far infrared wavelength is the component that penetrates right into our very tissues to induce a rejuvenating, detoxifying sweat. Unlike the traditional and wet saunas which use heated air to warm our body, infrared saunas subject your body under a more comfortable, relaxing temperature.
Infrared Sauna And Its Known Types
Infrared saunas are divided into three types the near, the middle and the far infrared saunas. Far infrared saunas use radiant heat in which the radiant energy is redirected from an emitting heat source into a specific object, or our bodies as an example. On the other hand, a near infrared sauna utilizes an infrared light that is contained within the spectrum of the natural sunlight. In essence, the sun is emitting almost half of its total energy in the near infrared spectrum.
Both of these saunas have their own corresponding benefits, each of them equally tested and proven. But if you’re gunning to gain all of these benefits without having to choose between the two, dive into the nearest middle infrared saunas you have in your neighborhood!
Are These Saunas Safe For My Skin?
That’s a resounding yes! In fact, one of the defining features of infrared saunas is that it won’t and can’t burn yourself as it only operates below 130F, a temperature that is deemed to be more comfortable and much safer by most users. In addition, there are no known reports or dangers that were associated to infrared saunas.
Now, while this sounds utterly pleasing, I’d still recommend that you see your doctor before you indulge into this kind of regimen. And while you’re at it, verify from your physician that you’re not under any type of pre-existing conditions as these ailments might complicate them further.
Now onto the big reveal……
What are The Benefits of Infrared Sauna on Skin?
1. Infrared Sauna and Metabolism
When you’re relaxing in a far infrared sauna, the heat that is generated is being absorbed deeply into your body. During this, a significant increase in heart rate, along with your body’s cardiac output and metabolic rate are expected. And as our body expends energy when it sweats, this demonstrates that it can burn up to 300 to 500 calories within a single 30-minute session. This also equals to the released sweat when you’re running a 10-15 km.
Moreover, your basal metabolic rate is expected to elevate, an indication that you should burn calories at a heightened rate for hours right after your session has ended. All in all, you’re shedding a staggering 800 calories within just a single session.
2. Infrared Sauna and Detoxification
While our bodies are already perfectly capable of detoxing by themselves, our body’s detoxification systems still need support. One known support is through infrared therapy which in effect should expend just a little effort from yourself.
As per [Dr. Rhonda Patrick], who has a PhD in biomedical science, our sweat that contain the hydrophyllic and lipophilic components should make it a pathway for elimination of numerous toxins. Some of these include xenobiotics like BPA that is often absorbed through your store receipts, the PCB’s and phthalates. Also included on her list are arsenic, cadmium, lead and mercury.
Meanwhile, it has also been found out that sweating removes electrolytes. It is a must that you replace calcium, magnesium and potassium. The simplest and safest way to replace this is by means of water along with a hefty pinch of sea salt. Another way to replenish your electrolytes is through consuming kale which is practically a concentrated form of electrolytes.
3. Infrared Sauna and that youthful skin
Ever wonder why everyone sports such a glow on their faces right after their infrared sauna sessions? Blame it on the collagen!
Accordingly, far infrared wavelengths increase the production of collagen and elastin fibers which both make your skin supple and elastic. On the other hand, your infrared sauna session is bound to improve the delivery of nutrients to your skin through an elevated blood flow.
4. Infrared Sauna, Relaxation and Stress Reduction
And while we’re discussing stress, let’s hover over the opposite of the good kind of stress the chronic stress. This type of stress interrupts almost all systems in our body. It has the power to shut down your immune system and generally disrupt other systems such as the digestive and the reproductive ones.
Chronic stress can also induce a raised blood pressure, an increased risk of heart attack and stroke and propel your aging process to a skyrocket. On top of that, it also makes you vulnerable to a multitude of mental issues like depression and anxiety.
Thankfully, you don’t have to head back to a cave and become a shaman to achieve nirvana and that much-needed relaxation! All you need to do is to perform exercises. And yes, infrared sauna therapy is also one of the alternatives.
The heat stress that is provided once you’re in an infrared sauna also benefits your brain’s cognitive function. As such, it increases the norepinephrine levels, a hormone that supports focus and attention. In addition, it elevates the levels of prolactin, a hormone that houses the growth myelin which gauges how swift your brain operates.
5. Infrared Sauna and Ageing
Sitting in an infrared sauna creates heat stress, which is a good kind of stress. At this point, it causes your body to beef up the production of heat shock proteins which aid in repairing the damaged proteins while protecting your DNA. This process alone can optimize your biological age, or the rate in which you’re aging depending on your cellular level.
The benefits of an infrared sauna don’t only revolve around our skin. They go beyond that and notch them up even more for our general health and well-being. From its physiological effects on our metabolism all the way to improving our mental health, all of these are very much improved as its temperature is more comfortable and safer as compared to the traditional saunas. Of course, it is still crucial that you talk with your doctor first before jumping in right into the nearest infrared sauna in your place as this form of relaxation also poses some risks.
Do you have an infrared sauna experience that you’d like to share? Sound them on the comment section below!