Whenever we talk about saunas, we’ve always been told that it can supposedly help you lose weight without doing anything. You just sit there, sweat out all those impurities, and voila, you’re down to shedding a few pounds; but just how true is this?
Sauna originated from Finland and has been around for more than 2000 years now. The country, being naturally cold, found a solution by creating wooden houses where people heat stones for over half a day until the steam that is bearable enough for the skin emerges. That’s when they enter the sauna where they beat the freezing weather while purifying and restoring their bodies.
Fast forward to today, many countries adopted this practice as means of relaxation. However, somewhere over the course of time, many people have started believing that it can help you lose weight, including myself! I sit vigorously for half an hour whenever there are saunas because it’s such an easy way of losing weight or so I thought.The truth is sauna does not help you shed and lose a few pounds of fats; the only pounds people lose through sauna is water weight.
What does this mean?
Since your body perspires through the steam of the sauna, it’s causing all the fluids in your body to be released. The good news here is that some impurities in your body will come out through the form of sweat. Bad news, on the other hand, is that the weight loss is only temporary. Your weight will go back as soon as your water level normalize again. The water level will be achieved by drinking water again to replenish the H2O that left your body.
If it doesn’t help me lose weight, what’s the point of Sauna, then?
You may not become thinner through Sauna, but there are still benefits to it and some of which we listed here:
When you sweat, the water that comes out of your body removes toxins and it cleanses the skin as it goes. There are toxins that can only be excreted through sauna, so it really helps purify your body.
2. Increases your body temperature
The steam in saunas is incredibly hot. With that, it increases your metabolism and burns calories faster when you work out thanks to the good blood circulation that derived from your body heat.
3. Relieves muscle tension and pain
Saunas have been traditionally meant for relaxation ever since. It stays true up until today because this natural treatment soothes your body, relieving you of any twisted muscles or cold spots that you are experiencing.
How do I use Saunas properly?
Generally, 8 to 15 minutes is recommended. But if you can last longer, 30 minutes at most, would also be okay. Just remember, if you feel light-headed, hydrate yourself immediately. In fact, you should hydrate yourself before, during, and after entering the steam room.
After Sauna, take 10-15 minutes to cool your body off. It is recommended not to bathe with cold water immediately! Wipe all of those sweats first, let your pores close, and take a bath after.
Are you shocked by the answer? I am, too, but I’m still down for a good sauna with all those benefits! Just remember that it’s not ideal to replace it over workouts– it is just a supplement for your fitness goals.
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Healthline | Fitnessblender | Self | Tylolife | Livestrong