In addition to sweaty perspiration, the body's drive to maintain a healthy homeostasis (balance!) also requires substantial increases in heart rate, cardiac output, and metabolic rate, and consumes considerable amounts of energy (calories) in the process.
The use of saunas and sweating has been recognized and used as a health practice for thousands of years. The skin is, in fact, the largest organ of the body, and is recognized by the medical field as a major organ of detoxification.
Sweating is Serious Medicine!
Sweating has long been regarded as a way to “cleanse” and detoxify, and is a crucial part of many detoxification programs. A large and growing body of scientific evidence backs up these claims.
In fact, there is so much evidence and scientific attention regarding the effectiveness and safety of sweating and sauna therapy, that “sweat testing” is used clinically for diagnosis and detoxification.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) considers the use of infrared sauna as a valuable clinical tool for cardiovascular, autoimmune, toxicant-induced, and other chronic health problems.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves of the therapeutic use of far-infrared saunas, and some health insurance companies may offer reimbursement if prescribed by a doctor. The IRS may even allow a health expense deduction if prescribed for a medical condition.
In general, regular infrared sauna use is safe, effective, and offers proven benefits for many conditions. Studies have even shown infrared sauna therapy is safe and effective for increasing lactation in breastfeeding mothers, and does not appear to be harmful during pregnancy.
“Moderate sauna use is safe for most older people, but diabetics and anyone being treated for heart or circulatory conditions should check with their doctor, particularly if taking medications,” states Dr. J.H. Halperin, Mount Sinai Medical Center.
If you think you may benefit from infrared sauna therapy, but you aren't sure, go ahead and check with your doctor. Feel free bring them this article about infrared sauna therapy to begin your conversation.