Got Chronic Pain? How about another ailment? More and more are sweating it out in far infrared saunas …
A healthy and effective detoxification program involves many supportive strategies from nutrition and supplementation to stress management and reducing our environmental exposures. One area that is sometimes overlooked is the importance and benefit of sweating.
Sweating helps to support the function of our nervous system, lowers stress, helps to remove harmful chemicals such as pesticides and even heavy metals through the skin, can support healthy blood sugar levels and can of course help us burn more calories and support metabolic rate.
Have you ever tried sweating it out in a sauna, only to find that you couldn’t take the heat longer than a few minutes? You’re certainly not alone!
A traditional session in a high-heat sauna (at 180 to 220 degrees Fahrenheit) can be difficult to tolerate. The good news is that there is an alternative therapy with similar detoxification benefits: the far infrared sauna. This space age-sounding technology was introduced to the US in the 1980s, but it feels as modern as ever today due to a growing presence in spas, gyms, hotels, medical offices and even homes.
What makes a session in the far infrared sauna a unique experience?
Rather than electric or wood-fired heat, far infrared saunas emit light waves, similar to the sun’s rays (no harmful UV light is used), that penetrate skin, muscles and even organs more than an inch and a half beneath the skin to encourage deep tissue detoxification without directly heating the air around your body. These saunas operate at 100 to 130 degrees Fahrenheit, a much more manageable temperature that allows for longer, more comfortable time spent reaping the therapeutic benefits inside. An average session in a far infrared sauna lasts 30 minutes, compared to less than 20 in a high-heat sauna.
In addition to detoxification, there are a lot of other positive effects can your body experiences from a far infrared sauna session. One of the most profound reported benefits is relief of chronic pain, making the far infrared sauna a hot topic among those who seek alternative pain management. Many compare the effect of a far infrared sauna to that of a fever in its ability to speed up the healing process and stimulate the body’s immune response. Infrared sauna heat has been shown to improve a broad spectrum of conditions, while relaxing muscles and improving lymph flow.
Those looking for beautifying benefits in the sauna may be interested in the far infrared experience as well. As deep sweating releases toxins and waste, the improvement of cellulite (especially when combined with massage), eczema, acne and clogged pores, as well as weight loss and a glow-inducing boost in circulation have been cited. Many spas offer an a la carte menu that allows you to add 30 minutes in the infrared sauna to your spa session.
If you currently enjoy the experience of a high heat sauna, especially the additional respiratory benefits of steam or essential oils, a far infrared sauna might not be for you. Consult your doctor before using either type of sauna, especially if you have a serious medical condition or you plan to begin a long-term sauna therapy program. As with high-heat sauna use, pay close attention to hydration and heat exhaustion while inside a far infrared sauna. Drink water before your session, replace fluid loss immediately with water and electrolytes and steer clear of alcohol. Your fluid intake will only serve to extend the detoxifying benefits of this unique alternative therapy.
Our top pick as far as personal far infrared saunas go: Sunlighten’s Solocarbon 3-in-1® Infrared Therapy as it’s the only sauna heater on the market to provide all three infrared wavelengths.
Sunlighten provides non-toxic and highly emissive carbonized bamboo as a protective cover on their heating technology. Research shows that specific parts of the infrared spectrum are effective at producing different health benefits. Their 3-in-1 sauna blends the optimal wavelengths—near, mid, and far—to achieve specific results. Seven preset wellness programs are ready to use at the touch of a button!(http://www.sunlighten.com/saunas/)
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