Get Your Sweat On at the Far Infrared Sauna

by Jessica Mishra on September 3, 2011

Have you ever been to a sauna? Chances are you probably have. However, have you ever been to a far infrared sauna? If not, you are in for a treat.

These saunas use infrared light instead of conventional heat, which allows for more perspiration without a higher temperature level. This is due to the fact that the energy from the infrared light penetrates your body at a much deeper level. This is a more effective and safer way to detoxify your body than conventional saunas.

Some of the other amazing benefits of a far infrared sauna include:

  • Weight loss
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Improves the immune system
  • Alleviates muscle and joint pain
  • Relieves stress
  • Reduces cellulite
  • Improves skin tone and elasticity
  • Assists with cardiovascular conditioning

I like to visit a far infrared sauna at least every couple of months. This ensures that my lymph system is moving properly and my immune system is strong, which in turn assists the body in the detoxification process. These are great to do in the winter to ward off an impending flu. Far infrared saunas also help to rid the body of toxic heavy metals which we are exposed to daily through tap water, pollution, fish, and non-organic foods.

Many spas now have far infrared saunas. Search google or yelp for a far infrared sauna in your area. In San Francisco they tend to range around $30-50 for a session. The price also depends on the amount of time spent in the sauna. The far infrared saunas are “personal” saunas that can fit anywhere from 1-3 people (depending on the sauna). You can go alone or bring a friend or partner.

Tips for your first sauna experience:

  • Make sure to bring lots of water to drink. It is important to drink water before and after the sauna, but also during your time in the sauna. Hydration is key.
  • It is helpful to dry brush your skin before entering the sauna. This involves taking a natural bristle brush, and brushing your skin in circular motions in the direction of your heart. This helps to open the pores, increase circulation, and stimulate the lymph system.
  • Bring a small towel with you and make sure to have warm clothes for the trip home if you live in a cold climate.
  • If the spa has access to a shower, it is best to take a hot shower immediately prior to your sauna to open the pores. After the sauna, take a very cold shower to close the pores.
  • Wipe the sweat off of your body while you are in the sauna using a towel or damp cloth.
  • Some people like to have something to read, but I personally like to enjoy the quiet time and relax.
  • Make sure to replenish lost nutrients and electrolytes post-sauna. Coconut water is a great way to rehydrate, and steamed leafy greens will help to replenish some of the lost nutrients. If you get a slight headache after the sauna, just continue to rehydrate and make sure to take it easy. It is best to stay away from caffeine or alcohol after the sauna.
  • You should feel amazing after your sauna, but sometimes when you detox you might feel a little off. If you get lightheaded or dizzy, just be careful when you stand up to get out of the sauna. Take it easy and drink some water. This should pass. Enjoy all the benefits that far infrared saunas have to offer!

*Important: Be sure to check with the spa for any health contraindications for far infrared saunas.

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