7 Health Benefits of Infrared Saunas

7 Health Benefits of Infrared Saunas

In the quest for optimal wellness, infrared saunas are shining as a modern solution for health-conscious individuals everywhere. 

Unlike traditional saunas, these innovative spaces use infrared technology to heat the body directly, creating a deeply penetrating warmth without the sometimes oppressive heat of conventional steam rooms. 

At Mito Red Light, we recognize the value of embracing cutting-edge health technologies that fit seamlessly into your life, enhancing comfort and overall health. This article delves into how infrared saunas can elevate your health and wellness routine, backed by science and aligned with our commitment to quality and efficacy.

What Are Infrared Saunas?

Infrared saunas are a type of sauna that use infrared heaters to emit infrared light experienced as radiant heat, which is absorbed directly by the skin. Unlike traditional saunas, which heat the air around you to warm your body, infrared saunas directly heat your body without drastically increasing the air temperature. This allows for more intense sweating at lower temperatures, making it a comfortable experience that can easily fit into daily life.

What Are the Different Types of Infrared Saunas?

Infrared saunas vary not just in size and design but also in the type of infrared wavelengths they emit, each tailored to provide different health-related experiences. Understanding the distinctions between these types can help you choose the one that best fits your wellness goals.

Near-Infrared Saunas (NIR)

Near-infrared saunas utilize the shortest wavelengths of infrared, which are believed to penetrate the skin's surface more superficially than the other types. These saunas are typically used to support skin health and aid in healing, as the NIR is thought to promote cell health and regeneration. 

Near-infrared units often use LED technology to deliver precise wavelengths that target the skin’s surface layers.

Mid-Infrared Saunas (MIR)

Mid-infrared saunas offer a deeper penetration than near-infrared, reaching the soft tissue where inflammation can occur. This type of infrared is particularly effective for helping with muscle soreness and increasing circulation, providing a soothing effect that can lead to faster recovery times from muscle strain and injury.

Far-Infrared Saunas (FIR)

Far-infrared saunas are the most common type found in home and commercial settings. These saunas use longer wavelengths that penetrate deeper into the body’s tissues, effectively heating the body and inducing a deep, detoxifying sweat at the cellular level. 

Far-infrared is especially beneficial for enhancing blood circulation and promoting a deep relaxation response.

Full-Spectrum Infrared Saunas

Full-spectrum saunas combine elements of NIR, MIR, and FIR, offering a comprehensive infrared therapy experience. These saunas allow users to customize their session to target specific health goals, whether it's improving skin elasticity, easing muscle discomfort, or deeply relaxing the body.

What Are the Proven Health Benefits of Infrared Saunas?

Now that you're familiar with the different types of infrared saunas and how they work, let's dive into the tangible benefits that these saunas can offer:

1. Enhanced Detoxification

Infrared saunas excel at promoting a deep, detoxifying sweat, a process highly regarded for purifying the body. The penetrating heat stimulates sweat glands, releasing the buildup of toxins, including heavy metals like lead and mercury, as well as other environmental pollutants. 

This detoxification supports the liver and kidneys by reducing their toxic load, allowing these organs to operate more efficiently. The result is not just a cleaner body but also improvements in energy levels and overall vitality, making it a preferred choice for those seeking a natural method to help cleanse their system.

2. Cardiovascular Health Improvement

Engaging in regular infrared sauna sessions can significantly boost your cardiovascular health. The gentle heat increases heart rate and stimulates blood circulation, mimicking the effects of moderate exercise. This cardiovascular workout helps to lower blood pressure and improve heart function over time, offering a passive yet effective way to enhance heart health. 

For individuals who might find traditional physical activity challenging due to health issues or age, infrared saunas provide a valuable alternative to maintain cardiovascular fitness and support heart health without the strain of intense exercise.

3. Support for Muscle Recovery

Far infrared saunas are great for muscle recovery. They deeply penetrate muscles with soothing heat and increase blood circulation to the area. This enhanced blood flow delivers more oxygen and nutrients to muscles, helping to speed up the recovery process after physical exertion. 

The heat also helps to relax tight muscles, reduce stiffness, and lessen pain associated with muscle overuse or injuries. Athletes, gym enthusiasts, and anyone involved in physical activities may find infrared saunas to be great tools for minimizing downtime caused by muscle soreness.

4. Weight Management Support

Infrared saunas contribute to weight management by passively increasing the heart and metabolic rates, which can lead to a significant calorie burn during a session. This effect is similar to what might be experienced during light to moderate exercise. 

As the body works to cool itself, it consumes a considerable amount of energy, which in turn helps to burn calories. 

When paired with a healthy diet and regular exercise, regular sessions in an infrared sauna can complement a comprehensive weight loss plan by gradually reducing body weight and improving metabolic health.

5. Skin Health and Tone Enhancement

The benefits of infrared saunas extend to improving skin health by enhancing circulation and aiding in detox, which is crucial for clear and healthy skin. The infrared heat promotes increased blood flow, which efficiently transports nutrients and oxygen to the skin, revitalizing its appearance, enhancing elasticity, and promoting the natural production of collagen. 

This can lead to a visible reduction in fine lines and wrinkles and a healthy glow emanating from well-nourished skin. Regular sessions can help maintain the skin's natural beauty and resilience against environmental stresses.

6. Relaxation and Stress Reduction

Infrared saunas are not only beneficial for physical health but also for mental well-being. The gentle warmth of the sauna can significantly lower stress levels by relaxing the muscles and calming the mind. This heat therapy helps to regulate and reduce the levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, in the body while simultaneously increasing the production of serotonin, the hormone associated with happiness and well-being. 

The result is a profound sense of relaxation and a decrease in stress, making infrared sauna sessions a favored method for achieving mental calm and restoring balance during hectic times.

7. Improved Sleep Patterns

The deeply relaxing effects of infrared sauna sessions are known to contribute significantly to better sleep

By alleviating stress and relaxing tense muscles, the body is primed to transition into a more restful and profound sleep state more easily at night. This relaxation response is especially beneficial because good quality sleep is crucial for the body's recovery processes and overall well-being. 

Regular users of infrared saunas often report faster sleep onset and a more uninterrupted sleep pattern, which can have a cumulative positive effect on daily energy levels and cognitive function, supporting a healthier lifestyle overall.

Are Infrared Saunas Safe for Everyone?

After diving into the numerous benefits of infrared saunas, you might be eager to try one. However, before you do, it's wise to pause and consider whether it's right for you. While these saunas are a fantastic addition to many people's wellness routines, they're not for everyone. 

Here's what to keep in mind to ensure a positive and safe experience:

Suitability for People with Cardiovascular Conditions

For those with cardiovascular conditions such as heart failure or high blood pressure, the increased heart rate and systemic dilation of blood vessels during an infrared sauna session require caution. 

While many experience positive effects similar to moderate exercise, it's essential to consult with a healthcare provider before beginning sauna therapy, especially if diagnosed with heart disease or high blood pressure.

Effects on Chronic Health Conditions

People suffering from chronic conditions may find pain relief and improved well-being from the heat therapy provided by an infrared sauna. 

However, the response to heat can vary significantly from person to person. A healthcare provider can offer guidance on whether the heat and light therapy might benefit or exacerbate specific symptoms.

High Temperatures and Hydration

The increase in core temperature and intense sweating can risk dehydration. It's smart to stay well-hydrated before, during, and after a session. Those with conditions affecting their ability to regulate body temperature or who are particularly sensitive to heat may need to take additional precautions or avoid the sauna.

Potential Side Effects

While most people tolerate infrared sauna use well, some might experience mild side effects like dizziness, nausea, or headaches. These symptoms are typically temporary and can often be alleviated by ensuring proper hydration and starting with shorter sessions at lower temperatures to allow the body to adjust to the sauna environment.

Regular Sauna Use and Monitoring

If you incorporate regular infrared sauna sessions into your wellness routine, it's wise to monitor how your body responds over time. Adjustments may be necessary based on your observations or feedback from medical professionals, particularly if you are managing any health conditions.

How Do You Use an Infrared Sauna?

You've got the scoop on the potential perks of infrared saunas, but how do you make the most of each session? Whether you're new to this or looking to refine your sauna routine, following these steps can help you enjoy all the benefits without any fuss.

Step 1: Pre-Session Hydration

Start by making sure you’re well-hydrated. Drinking a good amount of water before you step into the sauna primes your body for the heat and the sweat you’re about to experience. This isn’t just about comfort; it’s about keeping your session safe and enjoyable.

Step 2: Check the Temperature

Before you begin, check the sauna’s temperature. Infrared saunas don’t need to be as hot as traditional saunas to be effective, thanks to the direct way they heat your body. A setting between 100 to 130 degrees Fahrenheit is typically sufficient to get all the benefits without the discomfort of higher temperatures.

Step 3: Time Your Session Right

Timing is key. Start with shorter sessions of about 10-15 minutes, especially if you're new to sauna use. As you get used to the heat and how your body responds, you can gradually increase your time to about 20-30 minutes. 

Listening to your body is important here — never feel like you have to stay inside longer than feels comfortable.

Step 4: Wear Minimal Clothing

Wear as little as possible to maximize the infrared light’s contact with your skin. A swimsuit or workout clothes are good options, or you can go with sauna-appropriate attire — provided your clothes allow for maximum exposure of your skin to the infrared rays.

Step 5: Bring a Towel

Always have a towel with you, both for sitting on and for wiping away sweat. This helps maintain cleanliness and hygiene within the sauna.

Step 6: Relax and Enjoy

Once you’re set up, relax and enjoy the session. You can meditate, practice deep breathing, or simply close your eyes and let the gentle warmth envelop you. This is your time to unwind both physically and mentally.

Step 7: Post-Session Care

After your session, step out of the sauna and cool down gradually. Drink another glass of water to rehydrate and help flush out any toxins that the sauna session has helped bring to the surface of your skin.

How To Maximize Your Infrared Sauna Experience

Ready to elevate your way to peak wellness? Follow these tips to maximize the health benefits of your infrared sauna sessions while ensuring each experience is as rewarding and effective as possible.

Complement With Red Light Therapy

Enhance your infrared sauna sessions with our cutting-edge MitoPRO+ Series. Red Light therapy, delivering red and near-infrared wavelengths, synergizes with your sauna experience to support cellular health and recovery. In modern times, most people spend too much time indoors and miss out on exposure to key wavelengths of light as a result. Red light therapy can help make up for this and provide a wide range of potential health benefits. 

Perfect for deepening relaxation and supporting overall rejuvenation, our Red Light Therapy Panels make it easy to combine wellness technologies seamlessly.

Create a Calming Atmosphere

Set the stage for relaxation by creating a calming atmosphere around your sauna space. Add elements like soft background music, dimmed lights, or even aromatic essential oils that are safe for high temperatures. This sensory combination can enhance the psychological benefits of your sauna session, making it a holistic experience that soothes both body and mind.

Use Aromatherapy

Introduce aromatherapy to your sauna sessions to leverage the mood-enhancing and physiological benefits of essential oils. Oils like lavender for relaxation or peppermint for invigoration can be added via an aroma diffuser designed for sauna use. These natural scents can help deepen relaxation, improve mood, and even support respiratory health.

Follow a Balanced Diet

Support your body’s response to infrared sauna therapy with a balanced diet rich in antioxidants, which can help manage oxidative stress induced by intense detoxification. Include plenty of fruits, vegetables, and hydration-supportive foods like cucumbers and watermelon. This nutritional support ensures your body has the resources it needs to benefit from each sauna session.

Schedule Regular Sessions

Consistency is key when it comes to the potential benefits of infrared saunas. Schedule regular sessions to maintain and build upon the health benefits. Aim for two or three sessions per week, adjusting based on how your body responds and what feels best for your schedule and wellness goals.

Pair With Gentle Stretching

Integrate gentle stretching before or after your infrared sauna session to enhance flexibility and increase muscle relaxation. Stretching can improve circulation and enhance the detoxification process by moving fluids through the limbs and helping to flush out toxins more efficiently. 

Performing stretches in a warm environment, such as just outside the sauna, can make them more effective and enjoyable, adding to the overall therapeutic experience.

Stay Informed and Consult When Needed

Always stay informed about the latest research and recommendations concerning infrared sauna use, especially if you have health conditions. Don’t hesitate to consult with a healthcare provider to tailor your sauna experience to your specific health needs, ensuring safety and effectiveness.

The Bottom Line

After exploring the remarkable health benefits of infrared saunas, it's clear that this modern wellness tool is valuable in enhancing our overall health and vitality. 

At Mito Red Light, we're committed to integrating innovative health technologies into everyday life, making wellness both accessible and effective. Whether you're looking to support muscle recovery, improve cardiovascular health, or simply unwind and reduce stress, infrared saunas offer a unique solution that aligns with a proactive approach to health maintenance.

Ready to take your wellness journey to the next level? Explore our range of red light therapy devices, designed to complement your infrared sauna sessions and enhance your health routine.



Infrared Saunas: 6 Health Benefits | Cleveland Clinic

What is Aromatherapy? | Cleveland Clinic

The importance of stretching | Harvard Health

Do infrared saunas have any health benefits? | Mayo Clinic

Clinical Effects of Regular Dry Sauna Bathing: A Systematic Review | PMC

Feasibility and acceptability of a Whole-Body hyperthermia (WBH) protocol | Taylor & Francis

A hot topic for health: Results of the Global Sauna Survey | ScienceDirect


DISCLAIMERMito Red Light devices are not clinically proven to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any medical conditions. Mito Red Light devices are Class II general wellness devices aimed at affecting the body through topical heating and supporting cellular function. The scientific studies referenced in this article are for informational purposes only. To see a list of precautionary warnings and contraindications, click here.