What is it?
Infra-red sauna therapy uses infra-red wavelengths to produce heat and convey other supportive health and wellness benefits for people seeking sauna therapy. Approximately 50% of the sun’s energy is comprised of infra-red illustrating a human evolutionary need for stimulation by all a spectrum of infrared as an adjunct to multilevel health and wellbeing. Individual sauna pods give the impression of being cocooned in the sun’s nurturing warmth.
What are its origins?
Sauna has been a popular tool for maintaining health and wellbeing of centuries, particularly in Scandinavian countries and many other native populations. Sauna forms part of a healthy lifestyle in these cultures and contributes to their rituals and spiritual practice. More recently there has been interest in the ability of infra-red to facilitate optimal physical, mental and emotional functioning. Ongoing research provides a growing body of evidence into the ability of the infrared waves to contribute to management of disease process, multi-layered healing and optimal physiologic functioning.
How does it work?
Near, mid and far infrared waves all penetrate the skin and the body to different depths. Near infrared (nIR) penetrates deeply, measured by NASA to reach depths up to 23cm and is rapidly absorbed by pigmented tissues. Research shows nIR contributes to cell health and tissue growth/regeneration, enhancing healing, minimising side effects of chemotherapy, skin rejuvenation, and white cell production- important for healing. Mid (mIR) and far (fIR) waves penetrate less deeply into the body however they are rapidly absorbed by water in the tissues, improving circulation, cardiovascular exercise/toning and regulating blood pressure, while promoting safe detoxification and relaxation. The combination of infrared in specified ratios ensures a vital contribution to overall health through the synergy of their unique combinations.
Every cell of our body contains mitochondria. Via chemical processes these organelles use nutrition and other biochemical and electromagnetic components to create energy for cell functioning. Each mitochondria contains infrared receptors called chromophores. When chromophores have access to and absorb infrared waves the cellular energy production increases and is used to repair and rejuvenate at the cellular level. The body is made up of billions of cells. If the cells are struggling to make enough energy for efficient functioning, signalling between cells is poorly regulated and often incorrect, whole body regulatory systems struggle. Ultimately this leads to disease. By providing the cells with infra-red waves through sauna they can perform optimally, enhancing the messaging system and supporting regulatory processes in the body.
What conditions can it treat?
As part of a multidisciplinary and integrative treatment model infrared therapy has a great contribution to make in the reduction of symptoms and severity, a slowing of disease processes and on occasion, remission from symptoms altogether. Conditions that have shown improvement include:
- Cardiovascular disease and Heart failure
- Cancer and treatment side-effects
- Skin- aging, cellulite, eczema and psoriasis
- Detoxification- heavy metal and other toxic loads
- Chronic fatigue
- Wound healing
- Chronic pain
- Exercise resistance and recovery
- Weight loss