Today I want to talk to you about another of my favourite common health habits: infrared sauna. Having done many rounds of chemotherapy and being on very heavy medication, I am particularly sensitive to the word detoxification, and I make conscious efforts to eliminate the toxins of the drugs from my body. I came across infrared sauna after my physicist recommended it to me, and thankfully I found out that it’s provided at the yoga studio I go to, which is free for members, so as you understand I was elated! I have it after almost every yoga lesson and I enjoy it very much.
What is infrared sauna?
Infrared radiation is a part of the electromagnetic spectrum radiation and has no relation to harmful ultraviolet rays. It is a natural and particularly beneficial radiation emitted by the sun. Infrared sauna uses some red lamps that emit this radiation instead of charcoal used in classic Finnish sauna to heat the atmosphere and the body. Unlike Finnish sauna where hot air from coals is what heats the body, infrared sauna’s radiation passes directly through the body and creates overheating and sweating from inside out. It is also said that infrared rays can penetrate the body up to 4 cm and directly affect vital organs. This means that this type of sauna is more tolerable as you don’t feel the burning of the hot air on your skin, so you can stay for longer in it, increasing its benefits. The desired effects are created at a lower temperature than the Finnish sauna. This type of sauna is more tolerable for people who can’t tolerate traditional sauna. Here’s some benefits of infrared sauna that are really impressive:
The skin is one of the largest organs of the human body and sweat is one of the most natural ways to eliminate toxins. Compared to the Swedish sauna, you can eliminate up to 7 times more toxins with infrared sauna. Infrared sauna also removes heavy metals such as lead and mercury that are hard to eliminate by the body.
Infrared sauna promotes relaxation by helping the body balance cortisol levels, the hormone that regulates stress. The heat from the sauna helps the muscles relax and relieve tension throughout the body, helping you relax and relieve stress.
- Pain relief
If you suffer from muscle or joint pains, infrared sauna can reduce inflammations associated with these pains by increasing blood circulation and relaxing the muscles. Infrared sauna can reverse chronic pains and researches on patients with rheumatoid arthritis and angiotensive spondylitis have shown that it can alleviate chronic pain without side effects.
- Weight loss
The heat generated by infrared sauna will also increase your internal temperature which can lead to a heartbeat increase, similar to that created when you exercise. Based on an article in the Journal of American Medical Association, 30 minutes in a sauna with infrared radiation leads to burning 600 calories!
- Improved blood circulation
Based on a research, infrared sauna lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, helping to prevent high pressure and improve heart health.
- Shinier skin
Infrared sauna can clean your skin. Removing toxins from pores and increasing blood circulation leads to a cleaner, smoother shinier skin that makes you look younger.
How to use it:
Begin with 4-minute visits at 70-80 degrees Celsius, gradually increasing your time to 15-20 minutes.
This is a new technology, and I confess that I don’t know what you can find in Greece. Whoever may have an answer, please comment on the article. However, you can also take advantage of the detoxification actions of the Finnish sauna with a 10-20-minute session at 70-80 degrees Celsius.
Alternatively, you can also buy a plastic satin shade from the Internet https://www.tapandaola.gr/product/multisauna/ and have all the above benefits right at your home, while watching your favourite series!
Contraindications and important points
If you suffer from any chronic illness, talk to your doctor first before using a sauna with infrared rays. It is not recommended for pregnant women, lactating women, haemophiliacs, sufferers of low-sweating (multiple sclerosis, central nervous system, diabetic neuropathy), those who take anticholinergic or antihistamines or those who have a cardiovascular disease. It should also be avoided during menstruation as it can increase blood flow.