Saunas are a nice way to relax and have a good sweat, but can they really help you lose weight? The short answer is… sort of.
Today, people still use saunas for detoxification and relaxation, but some also try to use them for weight loss.
Water Weight Loss – Sitting in a sauna will lead to weight loss because of sweating. You will see a change on the scale upon leaving the sauna since you have lost some water. Losing water weight is not permanent, however, and the lost weight is often gained back as soon as you eat or drink something. Because sweating helps decrease weight so quickly, it is a tactic employed by boxers and wrestlers to make a specific weight class.
Burning Calories – Increasing your body heat will help you burn extra calories. The heat will cause your body to raise its metabolic rate by up to 20 percent. This jolt to your metabolism will allow you to continue to burn calories for up to several hours after spending time in the sauna. The increase in temperature forces your heart to beat at least 30 percent faster, which means your body has to burn more calories for energy.
Detoxification – Sweat is composed of lymphatic fluid, so any toxins in the lymphatic system are expelled when you perspire. The elimination of toxins, such as heavy metals, helps you burn fat more effectively because they are not hindering your metabolism any longer.
Enhanced Immune System – A sauna doesn’t just help get impurities out; it also helps your body generate some good stuff too. As your core temperature increases, your body is tricked into believing that you have a fever, so it kicks up its production of white blood cells. For people who are on the go all the time, using a sauna is one way to decrease your chances of getting knocked off your feet by cold or flu.
Improved Blood Circulation – Another benefit of sitting in a hot room is that it gets your heart working faster which pumps the blood harder, and to accommodate this increase in blood flow, the blood vessels expand, resulting in a temporary lowering in blood pressure. In other words, by getting your heart worked up, you’re calming down your blood pressure.
Respiratory Relief – Spending time in a sauna can also be a responsive measure after you get sick. For those suffering with chest congestion, bronchitis, or plugged sinuses, the steam generated from throwing some water over the heated saunas stones often does a world of good. Sit back and breathe deeply.
Pain Relief – Being immersed in a pocket of hot air is good therapy for sore joints and achy muscles. For those who suffer from arthritis or other painful ailments, a sauna can be a good way to find relief; for those who live an active, physically demanding lifestyle, a sauna is a good way to reward your body for doing everything you require of it.
Endorphin Release and Stress Relief – Endorphins are responsible for that pleasant sense of wellbeing and satisfaction you get at the end of a workout. They may be one reason why spending time in a sauna is a good way to shed the stress and tension that often builds up during the day. Many sauna users claim that regular usage helps them overcome the effects of insomnia and sleep better at night.
Healthy Skin Tone – Spending time in the sauna helps remove dead cells, relaxes facial tension, improves skin elasticity, and rinses out bacteria, leaving your skin soft, moist, and youthful looking. Some people claim it gives them that “just tanned” look year round.
How to lose weight with Sauna
Start by taking a sauna twice a week for 15-20 minutes until you can tolerate a 30 minute sauna. Daily saunas are recommended for ideal detoxification and long term weight loss. 150 degrees is the ideal temperature your sauna should be set at.
Drink lots of water; before, during and especially after sauna.
Combine a healthy diet, exercise, water hydration and sauna to help you kick start weight loss and to detoxify your body.Use sauna after working out to relieve you of pain and to get you ready to work out again soon. Sauna increases recovery time.
Overall, saunas can be just a temporary fix if you only do it a few times. However, if you regularly sauna and make it a routine part of your healthy lifestyle, it can help you achieve the trim and fit body you desire.