Is It Really About How Much You Sweat?
To put it simply, no. Despite it being very common for people to think about steam saunas that make you sweat profusely when they hear the word “sauna,” you get more benefits overall with the use of a far infrared sauna.
The science and study of the effects of far infrared and its effects on your body is actually not new, dating back to at least the 1930s, if not earlier.
Detoxing Through Infrared Therapy
One of the studies for 1934 talk about how the skin works perfectly at absorbing and emitting heat in the infrared wavelength.
The temperature ranges for this specific wavelength are actually found in the lower end of the spectrum. These lower temperatures are typically in ranges up to 120 degrees, quite a bit lower than you’ll find in most steam saunas.
Interestingly, the infrared wavelength is also the same wavelength in which your body itself emits heat.
Far infrared rays in turn are effective at penetrating the skin and pushing heat into the body. This penetrating heat then makes human cells vibrate and spin and move in their correct pattern again as toxins are removed. Our bodies can then secrete these toxins through our normal bodily processes.
Steam Sauna Sweat vs. Infrared Sauna Sweat
The sweat that your body produces at the higher temperatures (such as in a steam sauna) is composed of different substances than you’ll find at lower temperatures (infrared sauna). For instance, the sweat at the lower temperatures tends to include more fats and toxins than your sweat at the greater temperatures. This, among other health benefits of infrared saunas, makes them more effective detoxification devices.
Further Reading on this Subject:
Hardy, J. D., & Muschenheim, C. (1934). THE RADIATION OF HEAT FROM THE HUMAN BODY. IV. THE EMISSION, REFLECTION, AND TRANSMISSION OF INFRA-RED RADIATION BY THE HUMAN SKIN. The Journal of clinical investigation, 13(5), 817-31.Vatansever, F., & Hamblin, M. R. (2012). Far infrared radiation (FIR): its biological effects and medical applications. Photonics & lasers in medicine, 4, 255-266.