Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Why saunas are beneficial for your health

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In the modern world, where pollutants and stressors have become a daily part of our lives, keeping our bodies healthy is more important than ever. Be it your diet or simple lifestyle habits, finding a balanced approach to take care of the body is important. 

“You can detox in a lot of different ways, but sauna’s the most effective,” he says. 

But why? What makes sweating it out in a hot room so effective? 

Dr Asmita Dhekne Chebbi, MBBS, MD, Dermatology, Venereology and Leprosy, Apollo Spectra Hospital, Bangalore, says, “Saunas have regained appeal in the wellness business in recent years, not only as a recreational activity but also as an essential component of detoxification programs.” 

The attractiveness of saunas, she continues, stems from their promise of cleansing and regeneration to support a holistic approach to health. While there are many techniques for detoxifying the body, saunas stand out for their numerous advantages that go beyond simple relaxation. 

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How do saunas specifically aid in the detoxification process? 

“Induced sweating is a sauna’s principal cleansing process. The exposure to the extreme temperatures of a sauna, facilitates the elimination of the toxins directly via the skin, allowing the body to cleanse itself,” Dr Chebbi elucidates.

Enhanced circulation is another important physiological reaction to sauna usage. The heat causes blood vessels to expand, she adds, resulting in increased metabolic activity that aids in the breakdown and elimination of waste materials. 

“Saunas boost the immune system. Regular sauna sessions might increase the generation of white blood cells and help the body cleanse indirectly by boosting immunological function.” 

Additionally, high stress levels cause the release of stress hormones, which can impair the body’s detoxification process. Stress reduction, facilitated by sauna use, also plays a significant role in detoxification.

sauna Sauna treatments before bedtime can help calm the body and mind. (Source: Freepik)

Health benefits of sauna, according to Dr Chebbi

*Saunas can promote improved cardiovascular health, assisting increase blood circulation, reducing blood pressure, and improving heart function by dilation of blood vessels. 

*Induce relaxation and reduce stress by causing the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals, which leads to a better mood and less anxiety. 

*Ease painful muscles, relieve tension, and lessen pain by relaxing muscles and increasing blood flow to afflicted regions.

*Improve respiratory health by opening up airways, easing congestion, and encouraging deeper breathing, perhaps alleviating symptoms of asthma and bronchitis.

*Sauna treatments before bedtime can help calm the body and mind, resulting in deeper, more peaceful sleep by lowering stress, relieving muscular tension, and improving general relaxation.

Important considerations and precautions individuals should take

“Stay hydrated with intake of lots of fluids before and after the sauna sessions. It is advisable to begin with shorter sessions and progressively increase their time,” Dr Chebbi suggests.

Limit your sauna visits to 1-2 times a week to avoid dehydration and overheating. Listen to your body; if you feel dizzy or uncomfortable, leave the sauna immediately. 

If you have any underlying health issues or are concerned about using a sauna, speak with your doctor, she stresses. 

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