What is an Infrared Sauna?
An infrared sauna is a type of sauna that uses light to generate heat. This type of sauna is typically called a far-infrared sauna — "far" meaning where the infrared waves fall on the light spectrum. Traditionally, saunas use heat to warm the air, which in turn warms your body. An infrared sauna heats your body directly without warming the air around you.
Health Benefits of Infrared Saunas
(We loved and sourced the information below from WellnessMama.com)
Heart Health & Blood Pressure
According to a review of all of the published scientific literature about these infrared saunas, the biggest researched benefit seems to be the coronary benefits, most notably in their ability to help normalize blood pressure and reduce the chance of congestive heart failure.
An increase in circulation and sweating can aid in detoxification, and in this way sauna therapy helps mobilize toxins. A systematic review in 2012 found that toxic heavy metals like arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury are found in sweats of people who are exposed to these harmful metals. In a case report, they found that mercury levels normalized with repeated sauna treatments.
Anti-aging, Muscle Growth, and Injury Healing
Saunas increase heat shock proteins, antioxidant enzymes, and stimulate cellular cleanup (autophagy), which can help our cells function like new. In aging mice, an increase in heat shock proteins help delay aging and improves cognitive function.
Sauna bathing can also increase several anti-aging hormones including human growth hormones and the insulin-growth factor 1. IGF-1, in particular, can really help with injury healing.
Several heat-shock proteins can even help with increasing muscle mass, even without weight training. Through photobiomodulation, infrared therapy has a powerful anti-inflammatory effect that can accelerate injury healing.
Mood, Mental Health, and Cognitive Function
Just as when you go for a run, sauna use increases endorphins (the happiness hormone) and opiods (the body’s natural pain reliever), as well as a molecule called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the brain.
BDNF stimulates neurogenesis (the growth of new neuronal cells) in the brain and protects new neurons from damage. Improving BDNF levels is therefore important for cognitive function. In addition, low or abnormal levels of BDNF may be a cause of several mental and psychiatric diseases.
Infrared saunas can also reduce stress by re-balancing the stress response axis. It can help lower cortisol, and thus helps with stress-related health problems. Saunas also improve the neurotransmitter called norepinephrine, which can help improve cognitive performance.
Weight Loss and Metabolic Diseases
Contrary to popular claims, heat and infrared exposure do not directly burn fat or kill fat cells. However, saunas help improve insulin sensitivity, increase lean muscles, and reduce fat by changing the hormonal environment. In addition, the saunas also reduce inflammation. Therefore, sauna therapies can prevent obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.
A Japanese study found that two weeks of sauna therapy increased appetite and food intake in people of a healthy weight. However, in overweight people, far infrared sauna usage together with a low-calorie diet resulted in significant weight and body fat loss. While this study did not compare the fat loss with a group that did not use the sauna, the reduction in body fat (4.5%) in about two week’s time is considered very fast.
Inflammation and Autoimmunity
By increasing circulation in the body, heat exposure can help reduce inflammation.
Infrared saunas, especially far infrared saunas, can help decrease inflammation more powerfully than other types of saunas through photobiomodulation. Far infrared therapy stimulates protective nitric oxide production in the blood vessels, reduces oxidative stress, and increases mitochondria function. Several studies have shown that far infrared exposure helps with numerous inflammatory diseases, including:
- cardiovascular diseases
- chronic kidney disease
- chronic pain
- chronic fatigue
- rheumatoid arthritis
- asthma and chronic bronchitis
- poor sleep
According to Dr. Michael Breus, a clinical psychologist with a board certification in sleep medicine, the steep drop in body temperature at night is one of the circadian cues that the body takes that it is time to sleep. This explains why a warm bath or a shower before bed can improve sleep quality. Because the sauna typically heats the body up much hotter than a warm shower, it can take the body a few hours to cool down for bed. In order to improve your sleep quality, consider using a sauna session in the afternoon or before dinner in order to allow the body to cool down by bedtime.
A Japanese study also found that far-infrared ray exposure improved sleep quality in both rats and an insomniac human subject.
In order to eliminate heat, your body increases blood flow to the skin. In addition, the skin adapts to this process, making it healthier. A German study found that the skin of regular saunas users could better hold moisture and maintain a healthy skin pH. In addition, these sauna users had less sebum on their foreheads, suggesting that they were less likely to get acne.
Photobiomodulation by red and near infrared lights can help accelerate wound healing and reduce inflammation of the skin. In addition, it has been used to treat acne, actinic keratinosis, and basal cell carcinoma.
Skin problems like eczema and psoriasis involves both inflammation and a vulnerability of the skin barrier. By helping both with strengthening the skin barrier and reducing overall inflammation, infrared sauna, if tolerated, can really help with these skin issues. (If sweat significantly irritates the rash, then you may want to protect the rashes with a eczema-friendly lotion and shower right after the sauna.)
There are several studies that evaluated how well infrared light exposure reduced cellulite along with other treatments. One Brazilian study found that a near infrared treatment further enhanced the cellulite-reducing effects of regular treadmill exercises. Two studies found that a combination of radio-frequency, infrared light, and mechanical massage treatment significantly helped with cellulite appearance.
We recommend dry brushing or using exfoliating mitts in the shower after using the sauna.
(the above information was sourced from WellnessMama.com. The Space does not own this information.)
the Red Room DO’s
- DO understand infrared sauna temperatures
- Infrared saunas heat the body, not the air
- The temperature inside the sauna is not to be confused with your body temperature or the quality of your sauna session
- Please do not fixate on the temperature the sauna reads
- Please follow your doctor's instructions if they recommend using a lower temperature (which may still be beneficial)
- Not recommended for Pregnant women.
- DO dress appropriately
- We provide each client with a hand towel
- Feel free to bring your own towel
- Suggested Clothing: bathing suits/undergarments or leggings and sports bra.
- We recommend loose, comfortable clothing after your session
- DO treat our room and equipment with respect
- No shoes in the sauna
- No food in the sauna
- Shut sauna doors gently
- No oils or lotions in the sauna
- DO secure your possessions at all times
- We cannot be responsible for lost or stolen items
- Lock the room door behind you before entering the sauna
- DO leave your room on time
- Staying longer delays other guests
- Please spend time after your session in our lobby.
- DO leave time to cleanse and change
- The Express: 25 minutes in the sauna; 5 minutes to cleanse and change
- The Full: 45 minutes in the sauna, 15 minutes to shower and change
- DO drink lots of water before your appointment
- Proper hydration is critical to the best infrared sauna experience
- The Space offers Reverse Osmosis water filtration through the drinking fountain.
- DO arrive 5-10 minutes early
- The Red Room belongs to you only for the 30 or 60 minute time slot you’ve booked it for.
- DO review our cancellation and refund policies
- Paid sessions cancelled with less than 24 hours notice will be forfeited
- Please use our online tools or contact us to cancel
- All sessions purchased are non-refundable
- All sessions purchased expire one year from the date of purchase
Q: Will I be losing water weight?
A: Yes, which will be regained upon rehydration. But the calories burned are real. As you relax in the gentle heat of our saunas, your body is actually hard at work pumping blood (increased heart rate), increasing circulation and producing sweat to cool you down. This results in a caloric burn!
Q: How often should I come in?
A: The more the better! Based on your individual health and wellness goals, we recommend at least 2-3 times a week. For more aggressive results, 4-5 times a week is recommended. We suggest you try the sauna immediately following your workout/fitness program to see the best weight loss results.
Q: Is it true I am still burning calories up to an hour after my session?
A: Yes. By increasing your heart rate and core body temperature by 3 degrees in your session, it could take up to an hour to return to normal. We encourage you to stay active before or after your session if you want to maximize the calorie burn.
Pricing Options :
the Express (30 min in the Room) …. 30.
the Full (60 min in the Room) …. 60.
Add a friend to any session …. +15.
the Express | 5 Pack …. 100.
the Full | 5 Pack …. 200.