The Health Benefits of Wet Saunas & Steam Baths

The health benefits of wet saunas have been known about and enjoyed for thousands of years yet it has only been in the past few decades that researchers have been able to conduct controlled studies of their use.

Some claims of medical cures are too far reaching to be confirmed, but doctors and scientists agree that there are positive benefits gained from sauna use.

When used regularly, saunas and steam baths have been shown to improve blood circulation, bring suppleness and beauty to the skin through deep cleaning, and relieve joint pain and muscle aches. And that’s not all.

Here are just a few more of the health benefits attributed to the use of wet saunas:

  • Inducing a temporary fever to initiate sweating
  • Reduce high blood pressure
  • Reduce cholesterol levels in the blood
  • Relieve the stiffness of arthritis
  • Improvement in skin conditions
  • Relieves tension and anxiety

Wet Saunas Clean, Heal and Prevent

These benefits of wet saunas are achieved in a number of ways thanks to the combination of heat and humidity produced inside the small cabinet where the user bathes.

The primary purpose of either a wet home sauna or a steam sauna bath is to sweat, a natural process which releases toxins and other impurities from the body through the pores.

Furthermore, since it takes the body a lot of energy to produce the sweat - bathers can burn up to 300 calories in 30 minutes simply by sitting in a sauna! - the sauna can be said to contribute to weight control.

It works this way: Our sweat glands - there’s about 2 1/2 to 3 million of them just below the skin surface in a layer called the dermis - are actually long, coiled, hollow tubes full of liquid.

When your body heats up either through exercise or sitting in a wet sauna (or even sitting through a job interview), the tubes contract and squeeze a drop or two onto your skin and we call it sweat.

It’s the body’s way of getting rid of excess heat to cool down the vital inner organs. The sweat glands filter a secretion of mostly water, sodium chloride and potassium onto the surface of your skin which then evaporates and controls your body’s temperature.

As much as 30% of the “wastes” in your body are eliminated through perspiration. As a result, perspiration is considered a healthy function, vital to the wellness of the body, and something that everyone should do more of - sweat.

Feeling Good While You Sweat

Not only can wet saunas and steam baths be thought of to provide cleansing and healing benefits, they are also used for preventative measures.

Another important factor that is achieved with sauna use is that the hot temperature in the room will cause the heart to beat faster resulting in something of a cardiovascular workout.

Although this “workout” is not as good as doing actual exercise, it is still beneficial because sauna heat does raise the heart rate considerably.

The cardio workout strengthens the heart and helps decrease blood pressure and cholesterol. The overall improvement in wellness helps to prevent or lessen potential health problems.

Sauna vs. Steam Room – Understand the Difference

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