Infrared saunas have increased in popularity as an important tool in overall health and wellness. What is all the sweat about? Below are 5 reasons to incorporate infrared heat into your conditioning program.
Relaxation is more important to health than most people realize. The American Institute of Stress estimates that 75 to 90% of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress-related problems. Long-term stress is the cause of countless physiological effects on the body, including increased blood pressure, weight gain and weakening of the immune system.
According to New York Times best-selling author and fitness expert Jorge Cruise – as well as many other health professionals – the more stressed you are, the more cortisol your body produces. Cortisol is a “fight or flight” hormone made in the adrenal glands that raises heart rate and blood pressure and leads to the deposit of excess calories in the midsection.
Scientific evidence also shows that infrared sauna therapy helps the body maintain healthy levels of cortisol. While cortisol levels stay the same or rise slightly during a sauna therapy session, they drop immediately afterward. In fact, infrared saunas have been clinically shown to reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure with regular use.
Sweating is good for you. Seriously, sweating is one of the body’s safest and most natural ways to heal and maintain good health. Researchers have long told us how the body sweats out toxic substances, including heavy metals. As long as you maintain proper hydration, the more you safely sweat, the more toxins you’ll expel from your body. And what is one of the safest and most effective methods for inducing a detoxifying sweat? A sauna, of course.
Infrared sauna heat works by penetrating joints, muscles and tissues, increasing circulation and speeding oxygen flow. By reducing soreness on nerve endings, our infrared heat reduces muscle spasms and helps the body heal itself naturally.
Infrared sauna weight loss sessions were shown to burn up to 600 calories. During a sauna weight loss session, core temperatures increase. The body has to work hard to cool itself, causing a healthy sweat. Using an infrared sauna increases heart rate, cardiac output and metabolic rate, burning more calories, leading to more weight loss.
The elevation in body temperature from infrared saunas use also produces an increase in blood flow that mirrors the benefits of a passive cardiovascular workout. Regular infrared sauna use – especially in the mid-infrared range – has been shown to significantly stimulate blood flow, even after your health sauna session is completed. A cardio workout has never been so relaxing! Another benefit of improved circulation from infrared sauna use is quick muscle recovery – after your regular workouts. The increased peripheral circulation from our infrared heat reduces inflammation, decreases pain and speeds healing, all important steps in helping the body recover from strenuous activity.