How To Properly Use Sauna While Fasting


One of the primary benefits of using a sauna is aiding in weight loss. Couple that with a diet plan and you’re bound to see some awesome results. However, one of the most popular diets or weight loss plans nowadays will usually mean going on a fast, so the question now is “can you use a sauna while fasting?” To answer that question, let’s take a look at intermittent fasting and infrared sauna and these two relate to each other.

What is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting (IF) is one of the latest weight loss programs nowadays. For those who are not familiar with intermittent fasting, it refers to a plan where you put yourself in cycles of eating and fasting. There are two common methods of doing intermittent fasting.

The first method is called time-restricted feeding where you are only allowed to eat during a certain period of the day (referred to as the “eating time window”). For many, this time window falls starts from 12 noon to 8 pm. The second (and less commonly followed) is the whole-day fast where you fast for 24 hours and eat regularly in the next 24 hours.

Right, so what do intermittent fasting and infrared sauna have to do with each other, and can you use the sauna while fasting or on an IF program?

Intermittent Fasting and Sauna

It is a fact that intermittent fasting and infrared sauna use are effective in helping you shed off those unwanted pounds on their own. But what if you combine the two? Will doing so compound the effects and get you better results?

Accordingly, yes and it is safe to use the sauna while fasting. If you follow the time-restricted feeding program, your eating and fasting cycle will be divided into three equal hours (eight hours per cycle). For example, if you use the 12-8 pm eating window, the first cycle (called the detoxification period) would be from 4 am to 12 noon. The second cycle or your eating window (called the appropriation period) would be 12-8 pm, while the third cycle (called the assimilation period) where your body will absorb the nutrients you consumed would be from 8 pm to 4 am.

Experts recommend that you do your sauna sessions during the first cycle or the detoxification period. This is when your body will promote weight loss and expels wastes and toxic materials from your body. When your body goes through this process, the high temperature inside the sauna will promote sweating and enhance the detoxification cleansing process, thereby improving the weight loss process.

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Should you sauna on an empty stomach?


Going to the sauna on an empty stomach is one of the biggest mistakes that people commit when using the sauna while fasting. So to answer the question, no you shouldn’t, and here’s why.

In the sauna, your body will be put under stress because of the heat and to cope up with this stress your body will need enough energy or calories. Without calories, your body is prone to “crashing” similar to what you feel when you exercise without eating beforehand. If you somehow manage to survive this “crash” and walk out of the sauna room, you are bound to feel dizzy or nauseous as your body starts to cool down after the session.

But won’t your stomach be empty during an intermittent fast? So how can you combine intermittent fasting with infrared sauna use if you can’t use the sauna on an empty stomach?

Simple: go in the afternoon or during your appropriation period. If you’re used to hitting the sauna in the mornings when you’re going to have to adjust your schedule.

Should I eat a lot before going to the sauna?

Since you can’t use an infrared sauna with an empty stomach, does that mean then that you should eat a lot beforehand? Still, the answer would be no.

To better understand why this is not advisable, let’s take a look first at what happens to our bodies tight after eating and how this affects our sauna sessions.

After a full meal, our blood circulation moves up and much of it will be concentrated in the digestive system to help digest the food and carry and distribute the nutrients to the rest of the body. When you go to the sauna in this state, your body gets confused because it will be torn between digesting the food and dealing with the stress and increased heart rate brought about by the high heat, which then won’t allow you to fully enjoy the benefits of using a sauna. Remember, you’ll want your blood to be circulating freely throughout your body during a sauna session, otherwise, the effects won’t be as good as it should be.

So how much should I eat before going to the sauna?

If you can’t go to the sauna on an empty stomach and neither can you go there all full, then how much should you eat before your sauna session? The answer is to eat just enough to keep you feeling fed and not full (there is a difference between the two). Also, you’ll want to give your body some time to digest the food you just ate before you enter the sauna, whether that’s an infrared sauna or a traditional one like those barrel saunas.

For example, if you had a huge meal at lunchtime (or breakfast since this will be your first meal of the day) give yourself an hour or two (three would be ideal) before hitting the sauna. This should be enough hours to allow your body to digest all the food you consumed.

If you feel that you must eat right before a sauna session, then opt for a light meal or a snack like a yogurt or fruits and wait for at least a few minutes before starting your sauna session.

Can I eat inside the sauna?

No, you can’t (and should never) eat inside the sauna. Bringing the food into the sauna, even if it’s a one-person infrared sauna and you’re all alone inside, is simply unacceptable and unhygienic. If you feel hungry while inside the sauna, drink water instead. For the most part, you are just thirsty and are mistaking the symptoms of hunger.

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Intermittent fasting and infrared sauna use are potent combinations when it comes to losing weight. Just be sure to keep the tips about sauna while fasting mentioned above in mind to ensure that you don’t feel faint or uncomfortable during your sauna session and be able to enjoy the benefits to their maximum.

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