Reports of mood elevation and stress relief are common amongst regular infrared sauna users, but researchers were curious to find out whether it had any impact in treating actual mild depression.
What is an Infrared Sauna?
An infrared sauna is a type of sauna that uses infrared light to create heat, providing the body with a calm and natural way to warm up, relax, detoxify, and feel generally better.
Regular saunas use conduction and convection methods to warm air, which in turn, warms your body.
Infrared light produces radiant heat, which is absorbed directly by the skin, and has been known to offer a host of health benefits for your entire body.
Does it help to treat depression?
A study was conducted on 28 mildly depressed patients in 2005 and the results were published in the Journal of Bio-behavioral Medicine. The subjects reported appetite loss, fatigue, somatic and mental complaints, and general symptoms of mild depression.
Two separate controlled groups of 14 were formed, one group assigned to thermal therapy, and the other to non-thermal therapy.
The patients in the thermal therapy group were treated with 15 minutes of 140ºF (60ºC) infrared dry sauna sessions, followed by 30 minutes of blanketed bed rest for a total of 20 sessions over a 4-week period split into five sessions per week.
It was found that these patients showed significant improvement in appetite and a reduction in bodily complaints, suggesting that repeated thermal therapy can be useful in reducing the symptoms of mildly depressed individuals. The non-thermal control group did not experience these positive changes, which proves what regular infrared sauna users already know: it’s a great mood lifter, and it doesn’t require any pills!
What else is it good for?
Infrared sauna therapy also provides a number of additional health benefits, such as weight loss, anti-aging, improving cardiovascular health, reducing anger, eliminating toxins, and lowering inflammation.
They are energy efficient and take up little space, which makes it a worthy health investment in the comfort of your own home.
To bust stress, lift your mood, and get a health kick, get your glow on with an infrared sauna today!