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Do You Know What The Best Sauna Is?

Do You Know What The Best Sauna Is?

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Everybody is on the hunt for the best sauna to get a good sweat session, whether it's at their local gym, spa or a friend’s indoor infrared sauna. For years Scandinavian cultures have been using a heated, wood-lined room to enjoy incredible health benefits. However, in the United States, we are only starting to realize that a short period in a hot place, where you sweat away and leave feeling relaxed, refreshed and a little bit toasty can do wonders for your body and your health!

Different Types Of Saunas: Dry, Steam, Or Infrared

With so many options on the market, research to find the best sauna available on the market for your needs. Whether you’re opting for an indoor or outdoor sauna, saunas come in three varieties: dry, steam or infrared. A dry sauna functions like a traditional Finnish sauna. Dry sauna benefits include low humidity and temperatures between 176 to 212°F (80 to 100°C). On the contrary, a steam sauna has higher humidity, so it can’t reach the high temperatures that a dry sauna can generate. Also, steam saunas are more stressful and uncomfortable than dry saunas.

Infrared saunas are considered to be top-notch because they use an invisible band of light, objects are warmed without warming the air. Far-infrared saunas give off longer wavelengths of infrared light that penetrate the body’s tissue to 5 mm deep. Near-infrared saunas radiate shorter wavelengths that can penetrate the body up to 0.1 mm. Due to the fact that the wavelengths provide a deep tissue penetration, infrared saunas work at cooler temperatures than dry saunas while still heating up the body directly, instead of the surrounding air within the unit.

How Does Your Body React In A Sauna?

Saunas get very hot, so hot that the body responds through perspiring as a means of cooling itself. Oral temperatures rise 1.8 to 5.4° Fahrenheit, and rectal temperature increases up to 1.6° Fahrenheit, but it also depends on humidity, temperature and duration. The heart rate increases up to 130%, which boosts cardiac output and lowers blood pressure.

The endocrine system reacts to the heat by stimulating several circulating hormones. Growth hormone intensifies, which also occurs after a deep sleep or fasting. Furthermore, there’s an increase in beta-endorphins, which are accountable for the pleasure and analgesic effects you feel in a sauna. The increased heart rate is due to the rise in norepinephrine.

The best sauna session stimulates the immune system. This makes the white blood cell, lymphocyte, neutrophil and basophil counts increase, which means fewer illnesses. A six-month experiment, which participants had to engage in regular sauna baths, had far fewer colds than the control group over that same amount of time.

Also, studies have found that saunas can reduce oxidative stress, which is associated with cardiovascular disease, cancer and degenerative disease. The study appointed male participants who recovered in a sauna after a 30-minute workout. They showed significantly lower levels of oxidative stress than those who stayed in a room temperature environment after their workout.

What Are The Health Benefits Of A Sauna?

There are many positive effects experienced during sauna sessions such as cardiovascular health, cholesterol, fitness and detoxification.

Cardiovascular Health

Infrared saunas are very safe and extremely beneficial for people who suffer from cardiovascular disease. A 2015 study engaged 2,315 middle-aged Finnish men for 20 years. The men who frequented saunas the most, about four to seven times per week, had a reduced risk of sudden cardiac death, fatal coronary heart disease and fatal cardiovascular disease, compared to the other men who visited saunas two to three times per week or once per week. Surprisingly, increased sauna use was also linked with lower all-cause mortality.

Cholesterol

It has been proven that regular sauna use can improve lipid profiles. In healthy young men, total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol lowered after three weeks of sauna treatment, blood plasma volume increased. In healthy young women, the total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol decreased, while HDL cholesterol raised after two weeks of sauna therapy.

Fitness

It’s probably due to the cardiovascular benefits that regular sauna sessions can improve athletic performance. In a study with runners, they showed better endurance and higher plasma red-cell volume after consistent sauna therapy. Also, cyclists who participated in regular sauna therapy, can increase their plasma volume and improve their heart rate recovery after cycling.

Detoxification

On account of the fact that we are exposed to thousands of environmental toxins, which we don’t really know the long-term side effects of many of them, it’s a good idea that we help our bodies flush them out from time to time. Sweating is a natural method of detoxification. Also, sweat can eliminate toxins like BPA, phthalates and heavy metals.

Sauna treatments have been successful at treating police officers from methamphetamine exposure using a combination of exercise, nutritional support and sauna therapy. Women who work with chemicals showed improvement after therapy which consisted of sauna use.

Additional Health Benefits

If that wasn’t enough, there are various other health benefits that an infrared sauna can provide. These positive health outcomes have been linked to regular sauna use:

  • less fatigue, anxiety and depression in individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome
  • reduced risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia
  • reduced pain in patients with fibromyalgia
  • improved insulin sensitivity
  • better respiratory capabilities

What the body experiences in a sauna is very similar to what occurs during exercise. For instance: heart rate, nitric oxide, acute metabolic rate and oxygen consumption. Many of the health advantages of saunas mentioned above are also the benefits of regular exercise. This doesn’t mean you should ditch the treadmill for daily sauna baths, but incorporating saunas into your daily fitness routine can boost your health and well-being significantly.

Using an JNH Lifestyles infrared sauna at home is a relaxing and luxurious experience. Make sure you go into a sauna well-hydrated and don’t stay over your comfort level. If you build your tolerance slowly and keep well-hydrated, you can enjoy long periods of time in a sauna to reap the numerous health benefits. 


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