The Benefits of the Infrared Sauna

As many of you know by now, I have moved to Edinburgh and, although we had a surprisingly warm summer, it was not a summer I am used to. I really missed the heat and thankfully I found a solution: The infra-red sauna!

Similar to a normal sauna you’d find at the pool, the infra red sauna is like a warm hug which is much needed living in Scotland, but is also has a long list of health benefits!

Let’s break it down a bit. The main difference between the conventional sauna and the infra-red sauna is the temperature setting. The infra-red sauna is set at a lower temperature to allow you to stay in there longer. The temperature difference heats your body instead of heating the room around you. 

It heats the body versus heating the area around you, and it also mimics the sun without the UV rays giving you that “laying on a beach on a hot day” feeling


So what are the health benefits that come from the infra-red sauna?

Increasing you’d body temperature tells your body to start fighting, its basically a kick start to getting your body’s defence in gear. If you are fighting any type of bug, then it will start fighting it off, similar to what happens when you have a fever I suppose.

The research is pretty wide spread on the benefits on this going from helping with fighting infections, increase blood flow leading to muscle healing, detoxing, yeast infection prevention, helping problematic skin, etc. To be honest, the list of benefits seems pretty long, and I personally get a bit curious about how something can be a answer to several ailments, but I think it all comes down to your body doing the fighting for you with the temperature increasing within it.

I was really intrigued in trying the infra-red due to its ability to help preventing parasites. I was diagnosed with parasites back in September 2017 and they created some lovely havoc in my system. The mental aspect of this was pretty painful as well because you are realizing the fact that your body is infested, not a good look. Infra-red saunas are suppose to kill off parasites because they can’t stand the heat, so I was THRILLED to learn this.

I also am on a journey with my skin, and was keen to see any benefits to my skin

How often do you go?

Whatever floats your boat is the answer to this one.

I have been trying to go once a week for around 30 minutes. Ideally I would go more often and for longer periods of time, but life happens and once a week is what works for me. The really important thing is to stay hydrated because of all the sweating you are doing you want to make sure you are drinking plenty of water.

I try to use this time to meditate and to visualize to heat going through my body and this is how I find it to be most healing.

 

What are my impressions of it?

 I LOVE it.

I recommend it as often as I can to people because I am really seeing some benefits from it, but not necessarily where I was expecting.

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I wrote down how I felt before, during, and after going in for the first time:

Before

-       Skin inflamed and irritated

-       Back and shoulder muscles are tights

-       Mentally a bit frazzled

During

Not overwhelmed by the heat, but at the 10-minute mark started to get really sweaty. Never felt like I was overheated or couldn’t stand it anymore, comfortable the whole time. Feeling relaxed.

After

-       Muscles are looser, less strained

-       Skin visibly different due to the sweat session

-       More focused, while still relaxed

 

Although my skin hasn’t made a miraculous change to being even and blemish free, it does have immediate improvements. I am guessing that if I increased my weekly sessions the improvements may be more dramatic and long lasting. I have noticed it also has been helping with some bloating I have been getting recently. The bloating is a new symptom of mine with an unknown cause, but having the infrared sauna alleviate that a bit has been really lovely.

My muscles feel amazing though and that on its own would be a reason for me to recommend it. I work on my feet and normally would get quite achy, but I haven’t even thought about aching muscles since using the infrared. Another area that I have noticed some improvements is in my mind. I think giving myself this safe space where I can focus on healing and stillness has really helped me with some day-to-day challenges.

At the end of all this, I absolutely would recommend you to add in the infrared sauna to your wellness routine. It has some lovely healthy benefits, but above all that it gives you the opportunity to just let everything go and relax for a while. As the weather is starting to shift and the pumpkin everything is appearing I say take some time to give yourself a nice warm hug via the infrared sauna.

 

With happy vibes,

Mary-Catherine