Why Infrared Sauna?
Let’s Talk About Infrared Saunas
Lately, when talk turns to detoxing (remember when we used to talk about movies?), many wellness tastemakers have been touting far infrared heat saunas
Infrared aficionados insist it results in a host of health benefits, from clearer skin to pain relief and weight loss
To put it simply, infrared therapy involves exposing the body to invisible radiant energy. These light rays are longer than visible rays. The big difference from other saunas you may have been in is that far infared saunas, pods, and beds raise your core temperature instead of heating the air around you, causing a crazy-intense sweat (and, supposedly, a crazy-intense detox).
How infrared heat is linked to detox
Although infrared heat treatments may be a modern invention, sweating as a wellness practice is most most definitely not. “Sweat therapy goes back thousands of years to the Greek and Egyptian cultures,” says Joseph Harounian, founder of Firm Body Evolution, a holistic wellness space that was one of the first in Los Angeles to offer far infrared heat therapy—in pods!—when it opened in 2008. “When someone was really sick, they’d put them in a heated room and just make them sweat like crazy. They understood that they needed to get out whatever was in the body making that person ill.”
Obviously, technology has evolved over the years—the fire pits used in traditional sweat lodges eventually gave way to the electric radiators that heat up the steam rooms and dry heat saunas you typically find in a spa. But while these treatments warm up the body by heating the air around it, far infrared devices use light rays that penetrate the skin cells and heat them from within.
That means people who can’t handle the 200ºF (and above) air temperature of a regular sauna can still reap the benefits—the air temperature in an infrared sauna only goes up to about 120ºF (imagine a summer day in Palm Springs). And according to those in the know, there are a lot of benefits to be had.