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UR Wellbeing – March 16, 2018


By Neka Pasquale, Founder of Urban Remedy


Saunas! One of my favorite detoxification treatments is heat therapy. Infra-red, near infra-red or regular sauna. I have been using sauna therapy for many years in my practice and retreats as well as personally. I heard about them many years ago when a friend met a physician on vacation who shared his story of curing his chronic medical condition using an infra-red sauna along with lifestyle and dietary changes. This story spiked my curiosity so I did my research and purchased one. After my first infra-red I was hooked. I can’t say it was easy after 15 minutes I was crazy hot and needing a cool cloth on my forehead. But my skin felt softer, my head cleared and my energy soared. After doing them almost daily for a week I got used to the heat even craved it.

Saunas have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries. They are seen as a way to promote circulation of qi (energy) and blood, encourage sweating, and stimulate the immune system. Saunas also release toxins from the body through sweating and can promote deep relaxation while balancing the physical body. They are, however, contraindicated for people with yin deficiency (hot flashes, super dry skin), those with weak constitutions, or the elderly and young children.

I highly recommend trying a near or far infrared sauna, which is sort of a supercharged sauna that produces infrared light that is absorbed by the skin in the form of radiant heat. The heat emitted by an infrared sauna is cooler than the heat produced in a conventional sauna, but it travels more deeply into the body. That means that it detoxifies at a deeper level than what is possible in a conventional sauna, so that it creates a more vigorous sweat and thus more effectively releases heavy metals and other toxins. These types of saunas are often prescribed by healthcare practitioners for ridding the body of heavy metals from dental work, or to counteract a high mercury content detected in the system.

Saunas are an amazing tool for detoxification. Many spas now offer infra-red saunas so they are more accessible to people. I have found they are amazing at reducing inflammation and pain from arthritis to poor circulation. There are so many benefits to saunas give one a try and see how you feel.

Here’s the download on the different types of saunas traditional, far infra-red and near-infra-red.

Traditional saunas are warmed by either wood burning or electric heat. They can be dry or wet. Wet saunas use steam by throwing water on hot rocks (I love this!). They do not have any of the infra-red benefits but are wonderful for the circulation, metabolism and skin health, aches and pains to name a few.

Far infrared saunas use infrared light rays also called far-infrared rays, which are radiant, to heat your body directly. Many people believe infrared light and radiant heat provide greater health benefits for the body, like weight loss and immune system boosting. Some far-infrared saunas can emit harmful levels of EMF’s so make sure you check that out before going in one.

Near infrared lamp saunas my personal favorite combine heat therapy and light therapy. The light from near-infrared saunas can penetrate the body up to 9 inches, according to NASA. Additionally, NIR saunas generally emit very low levels of EMFs. Because of the spectrum of light, NIR saunas allow the air to stay cooler while still heating the body. Dr. Lawrence Wilson states “This type of sauna also provides warming and stimulating color therapy. The lights emit a small amount of red, orange and yellow visible light. These particular frequencies draw energy downward in the body and can assist the digestive and eliminative organs to some degree.

The infrared lamp sauna penetrates deepest due to the fact that the heat source is all concentrated in a small area, and not due to the frequencies of the energy used. The rays may penetrate up to three inches or so, so the air temperature can stay coolest of all the types of saunas with the same effectiveness. While some people like the intense heat of the traditional sauna, many find it difficult to tolerate, especially those when feeling ill.

Near infrared is an antioxidant nutrient, activates the cells, supports metabolic processes and decouples toxins from water molecules. Near infrared is helpful for wound healing and cellular regeneration as well. Near infrared frequencies can also act as amplifiers of other frequencies that are in the vicinity of the heat lamps.”

Give them all a try and see which one you enjoy the most!

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