For thousands of years, cultures from around the world have used the healing power of saunas. Today, we continue to recommend sauna therapy to detoxify, ease pain, for cardiovascular health, and to look and feel our best. We typically suggest sweating in a sauna for 8-10 minutes, once or even several times per week.
The most common types of saunas are traditional Swedish, steam, far and near infrared saunas. While all saunas have the unique ability to help the body detoxify, infrared saunas are thought to deliver the most benefit. An infrared sauna provides a milder environment, usually between 110 and 130 degrees F (other types of saunas are kept as warm as 150-175 degrees), and the infrared light is able to travel deeper into the body, producing a more intense sweat. And the benefits don’t stop there!
- 7 IMPRESSIVE BENEFITS OF SAUNA THERAPY -
Our bodies have natural detoxification pathways and processes, but they weren’t designed to handle the volume of toxicity we are exposed to today. Research has determined that infrared saunas can help stimulate cells to release and mobilize accumulated heavy metals for elimination through sweat. Researchers have found intentional sweating to be an effective elimination method for arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury Research has also shown that sweating in saunas can mobilize BPA (a toxin found in plastics) stored in fat tissue, leading to enhanced excretion in sweat.
2. MUSCLE RECOVERY
The heat generated by a sauna can help to relax muscles and ease tension and soreness throughout the body. Additionally, increased blood circulation aids in detoxification and delivers oxygen-rich blood to muscles so they can recover faster.
3. STRESS RELIEF
Infrared saunas promote relaxation by helping to balance the body’s stress hormones. Additionally, similar to exercise, sauna use increases endorphins, the happiness hormones!
4. SKIN HEALTH
The skin is our largest detoxification organ. An infrared sauna session can help cleanse the skin by improving circulation and shedding toxins like heavy metals and urea through sweat. Increased blood circulation has also been shown to improve acne, eczema, psoriasis, burns, and cuts.
5. WEIGHT LOSS
Infrared sauna therapy increases body temperature which then requires your body to work harder to lower your core temperature. As a result, your body will burn calories in the process, resulting in weight loss when coupled with a healthy diet and lifestyle.
6. IMMUNE HEALTH
Sauna causes us to sweat, which helps to strengthen the immune response. Several studies have documented that the deep elimination of toxins and waste improves overall immune function and resistance to illness. This study, for example, found increased numbers of white blood cells, lymphocytes, neutrophils, and basophils after a sauna session.
7. DISEASE PREVENTION
Dr. Laukkanen and other researchers in Finland discovered that frequent sauna use is associated with a reduced rate of acute and chronic disease. Most notably, the long-term study shows that middle-aged to elderly men and women who use saunas frequently have a substantially reduced risk of future stroke and coronary heart disease. Evidence from this study also found massive reductions in dementia and all-cause mortality in those who consistently used the sauna.
It’s a great idea to incorporate sauna therapy into your weekly routine. If you don’t have access to a sauna, look into the gyms and spas in your area to see if they offer this service. If an infrared sauna is not available, don’t let this deter you! Traditional saunas or any form of intentional sweating still provide great benefit.
- SOME OF OUR FAVORITE SAUNAS AROUND NYC -
You can install a sauna in your home, but who’s got room for that in this town? Infrared saunas have become much more popular over the last few years and there are plenty of good ones around the city.
NAO Wellness has two Jacuzzi Clearlight saunas with Full Spectrum Infrared and LED color light therapy.
28 West 12th Street
New York, NY 10011
124 East 40th Street, Suite 603
New York, NY 10016
226 East 54th Street, Suite 606
New York, NY 10022
- PRO TIPS FOR SAUNA USE -
1. SWEAT FOR 8-10 MINUTES PER SESSION
Beyond that, it’s thought that you may start to reabsorb some of the toxins you’ve released.
2. BE SURE TO SHOWER THOROUGHLY WITH SOAP AFTER THE SAUNA
This helps remove toxins that have been released from your skin!
3. REPLENISH WITH ELECTROLYTES AFTER A SAUNA SESSION
While you’re sweating out toxins in a sauna, you’re also losing electrolytes. We recommend drinking at least a liter of water in a glass bottle infused with a dropperful of a multi-mineral liquid like SpectraMin.
If you’re chronically ill, subject to fainting, or taking medication, be sure to check with your doctor before starting a sauna regimen.
WE’VE GOT YOUR BACK
This guide was written by Dr. Morrison and the health and nutrition experts at The Morrison Center. Our team is dedicated to helping you achieve optimal health through the treatment and prevention of disease.
Dr. Jeffrey Morrison is an award-winning medical doctor, a leader in the field of Integrative Medicine, and champion of a nutritional approach to healthcare
Robin is a registered dietitian nutritionist specializing in Integrative Medicine, Functional Medicine and holistic healing modalities. She helps her clients address complicated conditions and return to wellness.
Stephanie is a Holistic Nutrition Consultant and Emotional Freedom Technique practitioner with a passion for helping her clients fulfill their potential through both emotional and physical optimization.