Although evidence exists showing that the Finns using to smoke saunas were used by people as far back as 2000 years ago. The modern infrared sauna was invented in Japan and first came to the US in the 1980s.
Throughout history saunas have played a role in nearly every culture around the world. Whether it be the Turkish Steam Baths, Native American sweat lodges or the Russian Banya. just to name a few the historical popularity of saunas has recently been proven with today’s science showing a range of health benefits. Lets discuss traditional and infrared sauna benefits one by one.
Infrared vs Traditional Sauna
The difference between an infrared sauna and a traditional sauna is that the infrared sauna creates heat from light so it’s heating your body rather than the air around it. This can be much more comfortable while still providing the same benefits as a traditional sauna.
An infrared sauna normally has a two-person capacity. It can detoxify and alleviate stress in the body. Let’s take a deeper look at the difference between a traditional sauna and an infrared sauna.
|Traditional Sauna||Infrared Sauna|
|seen in spas, gyms and hotels||Used by celebrities, influencers, individuals at their homes.|
|often likened to tiny log cabins||is invisible to the human eye|
|work in a similar way to a wood burning stove||emits infrared radiation or light|
|have to use a heater to heat the air and the user||that ray or light gets converted to heat|
|it takes about 30 to 40 minutes for a traditional sauna to heat up||they can get up to an optimal temperature in 10 to 15 minutes which is typically a lot quicker than in a traditional sauna|
|ranges from 158 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit||works at a lower temperature which is usually around 113 and 140 degrees|
|Requires additional cost to maintain||Has lower operating cost|
How Does Traditional Sauna Work ?
A single electric heater is filled with rocks and water is then poured over the heated rocks thereby creating hot steam the steam raises the humidity within the unit and subsequently heats the entire saunas interior.
How Does Infrared Sauna Work ?
Wavelengths of infrared light directly penetrate the skin heating your body directly without significantly heating up the air the temperature
Price of Sauna
Cost of Infrared Sauna :
The other thing to consider is the cost to buy and operate. Depending on the size of the unit, an entry level infrared sauna will set you back around 2000 dollars. Whereas a mid-range unit will cost anywhere between 4000 to 7000 dollars, in a premium model it will cost you 10K and more.
Price of Traditional Sauna :
So let’s compare that to a traditional sauna which will set you back from anywhere between 4000 to 7 500 for an entry level unit, the next upgrade will cost between 10 to 15K and the premium one will be 15K and more.
Additional Cost :
Infrared saunas also have a lower operating cost because they require less energy to run, in general the cost to buy and run in infrared sauna is about one-fourth of a traditional sauna.
Infrared Sauna Benefits vs Traditional :
What makes spending thousands of dollars on an infra-sauna worth it ?
Well let’s take a look at the science and benefits behind each. The heat produced from saunas is known to generate oxidative stress within the body at low levels that help the body better deal with these stress hormones after you’ve left the sauna.
1. Restore Damaged Cells
The heat exposure triggers the production of what are referred to as heat shock proteins which effectively work to correct and restore damaged cells in the body. Too much oxidative stress can damage tissues and immune cells which reduces your ability to fight infection.
2. Makes Us Anti-sick
A sauna generates just enough anti-stress hormones in the body to increase your cell’s anti-oxidant capacity which reduces your risk of getting sick and it can improve your mood, your metabolism and much more.
It’s similar to say allergy immuno-therapy or getting the yearly flu vaccine small amounts of stress on the body actually has protective benefits although more research needs to be done there is significant evidence out there that suggests that sauna use is associated with a decreased risk of sudden cardiac death.
3. Reduces Cardiac Risks
A lower risk of sudden cardiac death is linked to frequent sauna use. The risk is reduced by 22% for those who use the sauna two to three times per week, and by 63% for those who use it four to seven times per week. Saunas may have cardiovascular health advantages, but each person’s health needs to be taken into account.
Less likely to die from cardiovascular disease than those who only use saunas once per week this makes sense when you consider that sauna mimics the effects of exercise and it’s been shown in some studies to be as beneficial as moderate paced walking.
4. Best Post Workout Option
It’s also an excellent post-workout option that helps to dilate muscles and alleviate any aches or discomfort from muscular pain. So there are quite a few sauna options on the market the first sauna I had while waiting for my sunlight was actually a personal sauna that cost just about 140 bucks on Amazon.
It generates steam while you sit covered up in a little chair but since your head actually sits outside the covered part you never really experience enough sweat or any kind of discomfort which is the feeling that you actually want to get when using a sauna.
Infrared saunas is that you don’t need them to get as hot because they are heating your body directly when they say it doesn’t get as hot as a traditional sauna what they mean is you have to stay in the sauna longer to receive the same benefit.
Is Infrared Sauna Safe ?
You would otherwise get from a traditional sauna because it will take longer to sweat, you’ll need to find an infrared sauna that heats at least to 140 degrees. The other potential concern is that infrared sinus emit infrared waves which are widely regarded to be safe however they do produce EMF radiation as a byproduct of the heating.
The truth is all electronic products emit EMF radiation to one degree or another. There was a health concern many years ago about the increased likelihood of developing cancer if you keep your phone in your pocket all day as long as sauna isn’t producing a crazy high amount of EMF they’re generally safe.
Can I Use Mobile Inside Sauna Room ?
You can risk damaging the sensitive electronic devices, I’ve never had the built-in Android tablet crash on me but as the sauna heats up it tends to get slower and slower sometimes taking even a few seconds to react after a button press in my case I had an empty wall across from the sauna so I simply installed a 55-inch Samsung TV that has various apps built in the TV is able to connect to the premium sound system built inside the sauna via Bluetooth and it works amazingly.
Sauna Room Lighting Effects
Yellow light is supposed to stimulate the immune system while purple light has a calming effect I enjoy the color changing lights but when I use the sauna I largely just put it on a dim red light so I can watch the TV through the glass door one of the negative things about the impulse model is that the bottom of the sauna stays relatively cool since hot air rises and there is no infrared heater on the bottom.
Can Sauna Cure Cancer ?
Whether traditional or infrared, saunas are widely accepted across the scientific community. It won’t cure cancer but it could certainly help in reducing cancer growth or any number of maladies it should be said however that for many of these maladies there isn’t direct scientific evidence to support the claims but there is strong corollary evidence.
For example there was a study in Japan. The participants suffering from chronic heart failure spent 15 minutes in a 140 degree Fahrenheit infrared dry sauna and then they were kept in blankets to keep warm a five-year follow-up showed heart failure or death reduced to 70 percent.
The scientists concluded that the ideal cardiovascular health is inversely associated with cancer risk so you could make the conclusion that infrared saunas can solve any number of health issues but you should take it with a grain of salt and definitely do your own research this is still a widely discussed debate.
Infrared or Traditional – Which Sauna to Buy?
The large majority of scientific studies touting the benefits of sauna usage were actually done by using infrared saunas as to why I’m not sure but as to whether one is better over another I think it comes down to more of a personal preference in fact I actually have a traditional Barrel sauna by renew therapy in my backyard but I find myself using the infrared sauna more often because it heats up much quicker and with the big TV and an Xbox a few feet away I practically have unlimited entertainment value for me.
Personally this makes up for the fact that you still have to spend more time in an infrared sauna than a traditional sauna to receive the same benefits.
According to Dr Rhonda Patrick the heat shock proteins being released are one of the primary benefits of sauna usage and they get released when you start to feel so hot that you actually want to leave the sauna and it takes longer to get to this point with infrared sauna.
So the answer to the question of buying an infrared or traditional might come down to convenience maintenance and time commitment as primary factors you should consider when answering this question for yourself.
In conclusion having a sauna is shown to have a wide range of health benefits now short of having a medical condition that would necessitate a doctor supervision.
Having a sauna can be a great tool to put in your toolbox to help you stay healthy and age gracefully I’d love to hear your own thoughts and if any of you have your own sauna routine that you found beneficial, it is great. Please carry it on.
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