So you have been thinking of installing a sauna in your home? Or giving the one at your local gym a try? Why don’t you take a moment to learn about the amazing sauna health benefits so you can make an informed decision!
Many people have used saunas to relax their bodies and minds but only a few really know the effects they have on their overall health. Saunas have been used since time immemorial as a detoxifier and a healer for the body, mind, and soul. A moment in a sauna will actually help you get rid of those toxins than most of the detoxification methods we have today.
Why the Sauna?
Our bodies are made to detox on their own (to some extent) but since, most of the time, we are exposed to dirt and microorganisms, it is important to do a simple detox regularly. And the most effective way? Using a sauna. Why? Because it is super safe, leaves you feeling amazing, and activates the greatest detox organ in your body – the skin.
Whether you decide to set up a portable sauna in your backyard or use the one across the street, the moment you open that door and are enshrouded by sensuous dry air and heat, you will know for a fact that its purification benefits have started kicking in. Ten to fifteen minutes a day is all you need to fade your tension, unwind your muscles, and relax your mind.
Studies have shown that the gentle, persistent heat from a sauna will get you looking and feeling better, which is why many people are embracing it day in day out.
Health Benefits Of Sauna (That Will Sweep You Off Your Feet!)
Here are 10 of the most amazing sauna health benefits that will keep you wanting to spend more time in the steam.
1. Improved Cardiovascular Performance
The heat from the sauna improves blood circulation, relaxes your body muscles, and triggers the release of endorphins, (“feel good” hormones produced by your brain and nervous system), that give your body a truly awesome after sauna glow. Using a sauna three to four times a week reduces your risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Since your blood is circulating properly and arteries are stronger, you are also able to withstand high cardio workouts like sprinting, rope skipping, and any other activities that get your heart beating faster than usual. If lately, you have found yourself hating your jog because you can’t go five minutes without panting, then a sauna bath could be what you need.
Boosting cardio power and improving workout is one of the most overlooked effects of sauna. In fact, only your doctor or fitness coach will tell you to try a steam bath when you have trouble keeping up with the speed of the treadmill. The rest of us may not even know that the steam bath could be all you need to improve your exercise recovery.
Infrared saunas are more effective in getting cardiovascular strength back. These penetrate the neuromuscular and circulation system and break down fats that could be clogging your blood vessels allowing blood to flow smoothly. With improved circulation, there is a proper flow of oxygen in your body, which allows you to do your cardio for an extended period without puffing.
To reap all the health benefits of an infrared sauna, however, make sure to drink plenty of water after the session. These things can really drain water from your body, so have your water bottle refilled before swathing yourself in the solace of that soft cotton towel.
2. Improved Heart Health
Did you know that bathing in a sauna increases your heart rate the same way jogging, running, hiking or cycling does? Yup! Soaking yourself in steam gives your heart an extra exercise, which lowers your risk of heart-related conditions like coronary artery disease, heart failure, heart attack, abnormal heart rhythms, and more.
But this doesn’t mean you should ditch your daily run in the woods, biking in the alley, or any other activity that makes your heartbeat into overdrive. All these exercises are great because they push your heart a little harder but so is a bath in the steam.
When your heart is pushed to the limit, it can maintain a stable heart rate when resting. People who don’t exercise regularly tend to have a higher resting heart rate than usual, which is not a good thing because it shows that your heart is still working harder when it indeed should be resting. This wears out the heart putting you at a higher risk of heart-related conditions.
3. Relaxed Joints And Muscles
As mentioned earlier, one of the most notable sauna health benefits is the release of “happy or feel good” hormones. Apart from giving you a glow, these chemicals, minimize pain in joints and muscles, after an intense workout like a hike in the trail, mountain climbing, or even extreme yoga poses.
When your body experiences high heat than usual, its temperature rises to cause the blood vessels to expand, which increases blood circulation. The increased blood flow speeds up your body’s healing process by soothing the joints and muscles and hastening the clotting process of cuts, scrapes, and bruises.
If you just got home from hitting the surfboard, running on the trail, or lifting dumbbells at a local gym and your leg and arm muscles just won’t let you be, try the steam or heat of a sauna to cool your muscles down. It will get rid of lactic acid and other toxins, reduce muscle tension, and get you feeling relaxed.
4. Improved Immune System
A sauna can help reduce incidences of flu and cold and other illness. When your body is exposed to extreme heat or steam, it secretes white blood cells, which improves its immune system. This helps in killing viruses, fighting illnesses, and keeping your body in good shape.
Also, saunas have been found to reduce sinus congestion from allergies and colds and relieve its uncomfortable symptoms. If you have your own steam bath at home, you can add a few drops of eucalyptus extract to reap more benefits. The action from the eucalyptus steam will help get rid of any unwanted congestion and get you enjoying the bath even more.
There is more. Every time you visit a sauna, the sweat that your body excretes activates macrophages, a phagocytic cell that fights harmful microorganisms that are resistant to antibiotics. It also activates dermcidin, a protein that kills harmful bacteria, fungus, and viruses. So, being in a sauna can truly keep you healthy by improving your immune system.
5. Calorie Burn
If you are looking to break some fat without breaking a sweat (but ironically, you are going to sweat a lot), then this is it. Saunas have been observed to shed off up to 500 grams in a session of ten to fifteen minutes, consuming about 290 to 300 calories per session. Now, imagine bathing for only five days a week for a month. How much weight will you have lost by the end of that period? Anyways, let’s dig a little bit into how you actually get to lose these calories.
Sweating alone involves plenty of energy and this energy is obtained from breaking down the fat and carbohydrates stored in your body. The reason why your body needs extra power is due to the increased heart rate. Since your blood vessels have dilated and now the blood is moving much faster, your heart also needs to keep up with the increased speed of the flow of blood, which accelerates its rate. This process requires more energy and that’s why the fat stored in your body is broken down to meet this demand. As a result, you lose weight, get slimmer and your body gets more toned up.
6. Improves Blood Pressure
Lifestyle has changed a lot and it is not surprising to see that almost three-quarters of the world’s population is suffering from high blood pressure. However, studies have shown that even spending ten minutes a week in the sauna could help bring down blood pressure to the right levels.
When you lock yourself in that steam room, the heat causes your blood vessels to expand. As such, blood can move faster and more freely.
But just like a spa or hot tub, before you subject your body to excess heat, make sure to seek advice from your doctor. This is because, saunas are not recommended for people who suffer from hypertension but if you really want to go in there then you must know what you are getting yourself into and the potential risks, and you can only obtain this information from a medical practitioner.
7. Skin Cleansing
Skin is the largest organ of your body and one that will enjoy sauna health benefits first hand. If you are fighting acne, rash, or any other skin condition, taking a bath in a sauna may help get rid of it.
Heat and steam bathing is one of the proven ways of cleansing and toning the skin. When you begin to deep sweat due to the extreme heat from the sauna, your skin is cleansed and new skin cells are produced to replace the dead ones. The pores open, removing any dirt and fat that is stuck inside.
Technically, sweating rinses, bacteria, fat, and dirt out of the pores, sweat ducts, and epidermal layer, leaving your skin looking great and in good working condition. Also, when pores get cleansed, blood circulation in the capillary is improved, giving your skin a softer, fresh look.
Exercising regularly can get your skin clean but may not be as effective as hitting the sauna. The mere fact that you have every part of your skin exposed to heat speeds up the process of cleansing leaving it rejuvenated and with an amazing glow that cannot easily be achieved by your usual jog in the park.
8. Better Sleep And Improved Mental Health
Do you sometimes find your eyes wide open when everyone else is snoring? Insomnia is real folks but thanks to the guy who invented the sauna, you can sleep deeper by just spending a few minutes in it.
The endorphins released when you soak in steam and the elevated body temperatures fall when you go to bed. As the endorphins relax, your mind relaxes too and you slowly fall asleep. Talk to any sauna bather and they will somehow seem to remember how soundly they slept the first day they took a bath in the calming heat and steam of a sauna.
One advantage of sleeping peacefully is improved mental health. When your mind shuts down, you forget everything that happened or did not happen during the day. You think less and since your brain gets enough time to rest, it will feel more refreshed and less fatigued when you wake up.
Getting enough sleep can have massive benefits to your brain. Although they may not be noticeable at first, spending more and more time in a sauna will have a real positive effect on your mental health. You will start to think much better and faster and won’t have trouble remembering stuff.
9. Stress Relieving
One of the reasons why most people get into a sauna is to relieve stress. Stress is part of life and if we can’t avoid it, at least we need to figure out a way to deal with it.
Although sometimes it helps us to push our limits, living a life of anxiety can hurt our mental health, and sometimes it is one of the reasons for insomnia. When you are worried or distressed, you may not have an appetite for food too, which could result in poor physical health.
A heat or steam bath will be one of the best remedies for stress. Creating time to relax in a sauna can relieve your anxiety and relax your mind in a way you could have never imagined. First of all, a sauna is usually a distraction-free place –you technically lock all your troubles outside and for a moment, you get to forget about the world behind those walls.
And as we mentioned, every time spent in a steam room releases endorphins that help you to relax, decompress, and enjoy the moment. Blood circulation in your body is also improved, your muscles are relaxed, and all this put together brings a good vibe, leaving no room for stress.
10. Toxins Elimination
Let’s face it, not everyone gets to sweat actively every day. We all know that deep sweating has a lot of health benefits to our bodies but sometimes just the thought of zipping into a tracksuit and taking a jog or strapping into our hiking boots and hitting the trail gets us deciding “maybe a day spent without workout isn’t so bad” while in the real sense it is.
You got to make yourself sweat profusely no matter what, even if it’s just for five minutes a day, as this helps in getting the toxins out of your body. Good news? You can achieve the benefits of sweating by bathing in a sauna.
When your body temperature starts to rise due to the heat from the steam bath, your arteries begin to dilate, increasing blood circulation. The heat inside the blood starts to move toward the surface of the skin. This triggers the nervous system to send signals to the sweat glands in your body, and as these get stimulated, they expel sweat, which cools you off.
While the production of sweat is primarily meant to cool off the body, the deep sweating cold helps get rid of copper, lead, mercury, nickel, zinc, and other chemical toxins in the body. These are absorbed into the blood by simply interacting with our day-to-day environments and getting into a sauna can help eliminate them to have healthier metabolism.
We agree, your regular workout can get you to sweat and help you remove some of these toxins but saunas have always remained the best and most effective way to detox. Doctors, researchers, and fitness coaches are recommending them because they know most of us will prefer soaking in steam to killing ourselves with a 53 lbs kettlebell.
Globo Surf Overview
A sauna feels great and has plenty of benefits for our bodies. Whether you had a bad day at work and looking to relax your mind or just need to soothe your muscles, a steam room will be a great place to get started.
One of the greatest sauna health benefits is calming your body. A single bath will provide a pampering retreat; you restore your body and soul, look better, and feel better. You also get to shed some weight, sleep better, and improve your cardiovascular power. If you add this to your regular workout, then achieving your fitness goals will be a piece of cake.
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- Saunas Might Actually Be Really Good For You, womenshealthmag.com
- Top 10 Health Benefits Of Visiting Steam Rooms And Sauna, Aston.ac.uk
- Benefits Of Sauna: 8 Ways To It Makes You Healthier And Happier, lifehack.org