Far infared Saunas & their benefits

November 19, 2020
Lyndall McAlpine

I have bought a Far Infared Solo Sauna in particularly to assist in heavy metal removal and detoxification and to help boost my immune system but have a very welcoming additional benefit of helping with my back pain.

Here is a short overview of just what Far infared saunas do and what they may be able to help with. I spent a lot of time in particular researching immune system, detoxification, cardiovascular health and pain management and there were good quality studies supporting these.


Regular radiated heat Saunas

Using a regular sauna (steam, Swedish, dry) is very similar to the way the body responds to low to moderate exercise:

  • sweating increases
  • the heart rate increases
  • blood circulation increases 
  • blood vessels dilate 

Your skin temperature also increases but as long as you are able to open your pores and sweat, you should be able to maintain your core temperature.

This is where a far infrared sauna different..

Far infrared saunas offer all the benefits of a normal steam or dry sauna, but with much more healing potential as these energy waves can penetrate deeper into the skin and the underlying tissues (up to 3.75 – 7 cm) while the air temperature remains cooler than in other saunas.

The wavelength of this type of heat and light cannot be perceived by the human eye and is an invisible form of electromagnetic energy. It’s believed that this wavelength of light impacts the bonds between molecules in cells and stimulates many more processes. (1,2)

Detoxification

The skin is the largest organ and an important method of elimination. Sauna can open up pores that haven’t been functioning well to help more rapidly expel accumulated toxins and impurities out of the body (3,4,5,6)

Lymph is a a vital part of the body’s detox functions, it is a buttery fluid that flows more easily when warmed, so sauna improves lymphatic circulation which allows the body to move pathogens and toxins from tissues to be excreted.

Immune system 

Increase of core temperature is essentially creating a fever inside your body and roduce more white blood cells. This is the mechanism that helps to fight viruses, colds and flus, specifically activating the Heat Shock proteins. (7,8, 31,32)

Here are some studies that have looked at using infrared saunas in the treatment of chronic health problems: 

Oxidative stress and autoimmune diseases

Oxidative stress is associated with a many health conditions and diseases. Research has also shown that infrared sauna can reduce oxidative stress in our body (9,10).

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome (11)
  • Rheumatoid arthritis  !12)
  • Chronic kidney disease (13)

Cardiovascular Health

There is preliminary but high-quality support of FIRS therapy for treatment of CHF and systolic hypertension,

These study shows how infrared sauna use can improve your cardiovascular health (7,14,15,16,17,18,19,20):

  • that the blood vessels’ ability to be ‘flexible’ and accomodate changes in blood pressure is improved
  • Blood pressure reduction 
  • improved blood viscosity
  • Neutralises blood toxicity and promotes healthy arteries.

Respiratory

Healing for respiratory conditions and inflammation as it can kill bacteria and viruses that cause infection as well as mobilising mucus from the lungs.

Athletic performance

by reducing muscle soreness, improving joint movement, enhancing endurance and running performance and enhancing recovery by improving neural recovery and Enhance Immunity being significantly more drastic for the athletes than non athletes (21,22,23,24,25)

Pain management

There are a number of research studies which reveal that infrared sauna can help to reduce joint pain and stiffness and increase range of motion through their joint (12,26).  

Weight management (27,33)

Sauans can  burns up to 200-600 calories per hour.

Mental health

Lower Dementia Risk, Improve mood and reduce levels of anxiety and depression. 

A study out of Finland found that the frequency of weekly sauna habits has a direct relationship with lowering the risk of dementia decrease the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by 66% (28)

Premature aging skin (29,30)

If you are interested in trying a Solo Sauna feel free to contact me or book here. First initial session half price.

Research Links

  1. Far infrared radiation (FIR): its biological effects and medical applications
  2. Far-infrared therapy for cardiovascular, autoimmune, and other chronic health problems: A systematic review
  3. Elimination of mercury by sweating
  4. Clinical response to therapeutic agents in poisoning from mercury vapor
  5. Arsenic, Cadmium, Lead, and Mercury in Sweat: A Systematic Review
  6. sweating method of eliminating toxic elements
  7. Far-infrared therapy for cardiovascular, autoimmune, and other chronic health problems: A systematic review
  8. Heat shock proteins in immunity
  9. Oxidative Stress in Cardiovascular Disease
  10. Effect of Waon therapy on oxidative stress in chronic heart failure
  11. The effects of repeated thermal therapy for two patients with chronic fatigue syndrome
  12. Infrared sauna in patients with rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis. A pilot study showing good tolerance, short-term improvement of pain and stiffness, and a trend towards long-term beneficial effects
  13.  An Update of the Effect of Far Infrared Therapy on Arteriovenous Access in End-stage Renal Disease Patients 
  14. Repeated waon therapy improves pulmonary hypertension during exercise in patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  15. Waon Therapy for Managing Chronic Heart Failure – Results From a Multicenter Prospective Randomized WAON-CHF Study
  16. Effects of repeated sauna treatment on ventricular arrhythmias in patients with chronic heart failure
  17. Safety and efficacy of repeated sauna bathing in patients with chronic systolic heart failure: a preliminary report
  18. Repeated sauna therapy reduces urinary 8-epi-prostaglandin F(2alpha).
  19.  Clinical implications of thermal therapy in lifestyle-related diseases.
  20. Effect of Waon therapy on oxidative stress in chronic heart failure
  21. Effect of post-exercise sauna bathing on the endurance performance of competitive male runners
  22. Effects of Far Infrared Heat on Recovery in Power Athletes
  23. Effects of far-infrared sauna bathing on recovery from strength and endurance training sessions in men
  24. Effect of a single sauna session on white blood cell profile and cortisol levels in athletes and non-athletes
  25. Effects of Far Infrared Heat on Recovery in Power Athletes
  26. The effects of repeated thermal therapy for patients with chronic pain 
  27. Sauna-Induced Body Mass Loss in Young Sedentary Women and Men
  28. Sauna bathing is inversely associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in middle-aged Finnish men
  29. Effects of Infrared Radiation on Skin Photo-Aging and Pigmentation
  30. Epidermis and Its Renewal by Stem Cells
  31. Heat shock proteins and immune system
  32. Regular sauna bathing and the incidence of common colds
  33. Infared effects on body temperature, physiologic measures and long-term body weight changes. 

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