sauna benefits
Using a sauna after a refreshing swim - or yoga class - can be a relaxing treat, but are you aware just how beneficial a sweat session can be?

Reportedly, spending time in a sauna - which is basically a hot box, heated to approximately 150-200 degrees F - for at least 10-15 minutes each week can help you in more ways than one. Not only does the deep, penetrating heat help your body detoxify heavy metals and toxins from which are easily accumulated in today's polluted world, it boosts the immune system and can even help you look more beautiful!

Indeed, sweating in a sauna could be one of the keys to living a longer, happier, and healthier life. Following are 7 ways using a sauna benefits your mental, physical, and emotional health.

Improves Skin Appearance

Perhaps the best-known benefit of using a sauna is that it helps flush toxins from the body. Because your skin is the body's largest organ, cleaning it through profuse sweating often results in better skin due to improved blood circulation. One might also notice a diminishment in acne and blackheads as saunas help to remove dead skin. Finally, saunas provide a significant boost in growth hormone levels, which provide a bounty of anti-aging benefits.

Boosts The Immune System

It's easy in today's world to become bogged down by environmental pollution, stress at the office, and unhealthy dietary and eating habits. Luckily, saunas help boost the immune system because the steam stimulates the body to produce more white blood cells.

Of course, properly detoxifying the body and adopting healthy habits will naturally improve your immune system, but this is an extra benefit of regularly using a sauna.

Provides Stress Release

Believe it or not, when your body temperature is increased, endorphins are released. Known as the "feel good drug," endorphins, which are naturally produced by the central nervous system, help you to de-stress. Because stress is at the root of most illnesses, this is an important benefit that should not be overlooked.

Assists In Weight Loss

Most people think of obesity as its own issue, but did you know that being overweight is actually a symptom of having an acidic, inflamed, and toxic body? Detoxifying by sitting in a sauna will not only help you remove pollutants and reduce the inflammation in your body, it will stimulate increased burning of calories.

Life Hack relays that during a sauna bath, the heart rate increases substantially due to the dry heat. In effect, a 170 degrees F sauna burns over 500 calories in just 20 minutes! This helps to speed up the metabolism.

Regular sauna sessions, coupled with a healthy diet and regular exercise, can help you naturally lose weight and feel your greatest!

Promotes Social Interaction

Some people prefer to sit in silence as they sweat in a sauna, but if you utilize the hot box with friends and/or family members, it could be an excellent opportunity to catch up and socialize. Because social interaction is essential for good health, this benefit should not be discounted.

Helps Improve Endurance

Whether you're an athlete seeking to improve your performance or you just want to be less sore after working out, a sauna session can help. Reportedly, regular use of a sauna increases your heat tolerance, leading to significant improvements in endurance sports. Having a higher heat tolerance can also result in feeling less fatigue after working out.

Assists With Recovery After Working Out

After an intense workout session at your gym, don't skip the sauna. In fact, sweating after a workout helps to shuttle metabolic wastes from cells, improve blood flow and help strained muscles recover faster. Not only will you burn an extra amount of calories, you'll feel more relaxed and less sore the next day.

According to Collective Evolution, the following is what happens to your body after you sweat in a sauna for 15-20 minutes approximately 1-2 times per week:

Helps your brain by:
  • growing new brain cells
  • helping it to function faster
  • improving memory, attention, and focus
  • preventing degenerative diseases
  • enhancing the power of meditation and visualization
  • relieving anxiety and depression
  • giving you a natural, drug-free 'high'
Helps your body by:
  • helping muscles grow bigger, stronger, and more efficient
  • increasing longevity with various anti-aging benefits
  • causing a massive release of growth hormone naturally
  • boosting your immune system
  • improving insulin sensitivity
Keep in mind, saunas aren't for everyone. Consult with your doctor or naturopathic physician before you commit to a regular sauna regime. And, be sure to hydrate if you do regularly use a sauna.