Especially now, we are all widely aware of the importance of keeping oneself healthy. Our bodies are amazing tools, but how can we better prepare them to fight (or even prevent) oncoming illnesses?
Improve Cellular Function
This may be one of the most impressive responses from sauna use. Dry saunas run at a temperature upwards of 174° F. Under such conditions, your body releases heat shock proteins (HSP). HSP are regularly found in your cells. Their primary focus is to repair damaged cells. Damaged cells are a common feature in multiple illnesses and cause cellular dysfunction. While under environmental stress in a sauna, your body releases additional HSPs to stabilize existing cells and repair those that are damaged. Studies have shown improvement in cellular function in those who regularly utilized heat therapy. Strong cells=stronger ability to fight infection.
Generally, inflammation is your body’s response to an injury or infection. Chronic inflammation takes place as a response to toxins or an imbalance in the body. You can encourage circulation to areas of inflammation by applying heat. During a sauna session, your heart starts pumping blood to your extremities and can help facilitate a reduction in inflammation.
“Sweating it out” may be the common reason people think to use a sauna, but sweat loss isn’t necessary tied to fat loss. Our skin absorbs a variety of toxins throughout the day via the air, beauty products, plastics, and human contact. Even heavy metals can make their way into our skin via cigarette smoke, exhaust, lead toys, and certain types of fish. When we sweat we can secrete those things found in the upper layers of our skin. Take time to shower after your sauna session to truly wash those toxins away.
Stress takes an unhealthy toll on our mental and physical health, whether or not we want to admit it. Not only does the hot environment of a sauna encourage relaxation of muscles and the mind, your body has a chemical response similar to that of moderate exercise. Your body releases endorphins that relax you and boost your boost. No one ever leaves the sauna feeling blue.