Skip this first paragraph if you’re not interested in the technical side of the health benefits of infrared sauna… Infrared light is not visible to the human eye, but it can act on your body in other ways. The smaller wavelengths of it (near infrared) penetrate the body most deeply, although you can’t feel them. They are part of the reason that photobiomodulation is so beneficial. The longer wavelengths (far infrared) don’t penetrate as deeply but are perceived as heat. Peak’s infrared sauna is a far infrared device. It radiates energy that can penetrate up to 1.5 inches below the surface of the skin. It turns out that radiating cells below the surface of the skin energizes those cells, reducing fatigue, improving blood flow, and flushing waste products.
Health Benefits of Infrared Sauna
Those effects translate into the health benefits that are the point of this blog post.
1. Reduces Blood Pressure. Far infrared sauna sessions improve endothelial cell health. Endothelial cells make up the linings of your blood vessels. You can find studies all over the web about infrared sauna reducing blood pressure, but a 2015 article in JAMA Internal Medicine showed that it is also associated with lower risk of sudden cardiac death, fatal coronary heart disease, fatal cardiovascular disease, and death from all causes.
2. Immune System. Heat, in the form of fever, is the body’s own best mechanism for fighting infection. Infrared sauna provides the heat without the fever, which stimulates the production of immune cells, improves blood flow, and flushes toxins from the cells.
3. Detox. Infrared sauna can make you sweat at up to seven times the rate of regular sauna. In addition to water and sodium, sweat contains trace amounts of urea and lactic acid, as well as minerals and metals, such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, chromium, nickel, and lead. If you use a towel to continually wipe away your sweat in the sauna, you help prevent the reabsorption of toxins that you are sweating away.
How It Makes You Feel
4. Muscle Pain Relief. Heat relaxes muscles, and that alone provides a certain amount of pain relief. But infrared sauna also dilates blood vessels, which promotes healing.
5. Joint Pain. A 2009 study found that infrared sauna reduces arthritic pain and stiffness, and that for most patients, the effects are even stronger after the sauna sessions than during. Furthermore, heat improves muscle flexibility (which takes stress off joints) and also disrupts the tension-pain cycle.
6. Stress Management. It is impossible to be tense during an infrared sauna session. Enough said.
How It Makes You Look
7. Weight Loss. At the cellular level, sweating burns calories: about 0.586 calories per gram of perspiration. This is energy expenditure over and above the water loss. For every pint you sweat, you burn about 260 calories. That’s worth a half hour on a rowing machine!
8. Improves Skin. The relaxation you enjoy in the infrared sauna will by itself do a lot to improve skin tone. But a clinical 2006 study from Korea also showed that far infrared radiation treatments improved fine wrinkles and skin tone by 26-50%.
9. Cellulite. Infrared sauna does not, as some marketers might have you believe, “melt” fat cells. But it does put you in calorie deficit, which shrinks your fat cells. Smaller fat cells = less noticeable cellulite.
Maximize the health benefits of infrared sauna for yourself. Book a session at Peak today.