The Benefits of Using A Sauna
Promoting wellness: how saunas improve health
Heat has it all: it naturally promotes better health and feels wonderful within the body. Warm, soothing and relaxing heat can help both the body and mind. In fact, heat has been medically proven to promote better health. Used as a natural pain reliever for thousands of years, different cultures worldwide have used heat – also known as thermotherapy – to aid in wellness and longevity, from Native American sweat lodges to Nordic saunas.
Why is heat so healing? For one, it promotes blood flow throughout the body. Activities that encourage circulation – like exercise and sauna bathing – have many benefits within the body. When blood flow increases, more nutrients and oxygen-rich blood reach areas that need it, from injured muscles to vital organs. Heat raises deep tissues' temperature, helping make muscles more flexible and promote more healthy blood flow. And let's not forget the most important muscle of them all: your heart. Heart health has been proven to improve with better circulation. In fact, in a 2018 Mayo Clinic study, regular sauna use was found to help reduce heart disease, strokes and seasonal flu.
Beyond feeling wonderful and enjoying a personal, private spa experience at home, an at-home sauna can help you live your best life. An at-home sauna is there for you any time you need it: after a stressful day at work, an intense workout or even an end of day retreat.
Let’s take a look at some specific areas of the body where saunas can be beneficial:
Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, lowering blood pressure and increasing circulation. As the body becomes heated in the sauna, blood vessels dilate and widen, allowing blood to flow freely and quickly throughout the body's circulatory system. Continued sauna use can improve the function of the inside of these vessels, helping to lower blood pressure. This also means that overall circulation – or blood flow throughout the body – is improved. Better circulation is also linked to a reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases, such as strokes. A study conducted a few years ago showed that sauna bathing four to seven times per week reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease by over 50%.
Reduced chronic pain and improved muscle function. This one is a pro tip from the sports world's performance therapists and professional athletes: saunas help muscle recovery. Pro athletes have been touting the benefits of a post-game or post-workout sauna for decades. A sauna's heat helps reduce the breakdown of muscle tissues, and increased blood flow to muscle tissue increases muscle building. Increased circulation also benefits joints, tissues and muscles, which can reduce chronic pain and inflammation. In one small study, regular sauna usage was shown to reduce chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms, including pain and discomfort.
Restorative relaxation and mind/body benefits. Time spent relaxing in a sauna releases a rush of feel-good chemicals or endorphins. Endorphins can help reduce the perception of pain and trigger a positive feeling within the body, resulting in an overall sense of well-being. Endorphins are considered natural healing: research has shown endorphin levels directly affect diseases like fibromyalgia, which causes chronic pain and inflammation. Other studies have even shown that sauna baths can alleviate depression and anxiety. Sauna baths reduce tension on joints and muscles, which helps ease the mind and promotes an overall wellness feeling. Finally, sauna bathing has been proven to improve brain health. In a Finnish study, regular sauna use lowered the risk for Alzheimer's and Dementia.
With so many positive health benefits, a home sauna is an affordable luxury that sets the standard for optimal wellness. The benefits of sauna bathing will be felt for years and may even add years to your life!