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Why Choose an Infrared Sauna?

Why Choose an Infrared Sauna?

Infrared Saunas are an amazing addition to your lifestyle, find out what to look for here.

Key Takeaways:

  • Infrared saunas are more efficient than traditional saunas at heating the body.

  • Infrared saunas are more pleasant to use than traditional saunas.

  • Full spectrum saunas are typically not worth it.

  • Far infrared is the best form of infrared at heating the body.

What is Infrared?

Infrared spectrum diagram for reference of sauna exposure with different infrared wavelengths

Infrared light is a type of radiant energy that is not visible to the human eye, but we are able to feel it in the form of heat. All objects in the world actually do emit some sort of infrared light, but some well known sources include the sun or even a fire. This is part of the reason why you may have very low levels of EMF anywhere you go, especially inside of a house.

There are a few different wavelengths of infrared, far infrared, near infrared and mid infrared. Near infrared waves are closest to visible light, but are still not visible, far infrared is the furthest from visible light. The important part about near infrared is that it actually does not output any heat. For the most part, you actually cannot even feel near infrared waves, which is ironic based on common marketing practices with near infrared being included in infrared saunas.

Why Choose a Far Infrared Sauna?

infrared sauna therapy at home

Far infrared is truly the only wavelength of infrared rays that actually produces an amount of heat to create the atmosphere of a sauna. This is generally why most far infrared saunas are simply referred to as infrared saunas, because if any sort of sauna is using infrared, it would have to have far infrared in order to create the necessary amount of heat for heat therapy. Far infrared rays are able to penetrate deep below the skins surface, in order to deeply heat the body from within. This means far infrared saunas do not have to feel nearly as hot as traditional saunas. Far infrared saunas are able to dramatically increase blood circulation throughout the body, promoting several health benefits such as, an up-regulation of metabolism, increased organ function, detoxification, improved mood, improved blood pressure and many more to the furthest extent.

Far Infrared Sauna vs Traditional Sauna

far infrared sauna treatments vs traditional sauna treatments

A traditional sauna or Finnish sauna, typically involves the use of water poured onto hot rocks to create a humid and hot environment. These are referred to as sauna baths or sauna bathing often. There are also traditional saunas that provide dry heat using forms of heating such as electric stoves.

There are several aspects of a far infrared sauna that are better than a traditional sauna. The main difference is in the method that the saunas heat the body. Far infrared saunas heat the body directly from within, whereas traditional saunas heat the air around the body, which causes the body to heat up. Here are some other advantages to far infrared saunas:

  • Faster Preheat

  • More Energy-Efficient

  • Requires Less Space

  • Less Discomfort From High Heat

  • Better Blood Flow

  • Increased Core Temperature

  • Lower Temperature Required For Health Benefits

As you can see, the benefits of infrared saunas are vast and it is generally more advantageous to use infrared saunas over traditional saunas. Some people may still tend to favor traditional saunas if they enjoy the harsh heat directly onto the body. Additionally, in the scenario of traditional saunas, they may prefer the slight humidity from the water being poured onto the hot rocks. This, however, would only be the case with very traditionally style saunas, and would not be present in dry, cabin-style saunas that operate using electric stoves.

Near Infrared

Near infrared has the shortest wavelength of infrared and does not provide much heat directly to the body. This type of light therapy is generally for topical health benefits such as improving skin or surface-level inflammation. Other benefits including stimulating or creating new proteins for collagen and elastin which is supposed to provide smoother skin; however many research articles have suggested otherwise. Some sources suggest that near infrared therapy may actually damage skin collagen via an increase in MMP-1 activity. This sort of contradictory information is why near infrared therapy is quite controversial and may want to be avoided.

Dishonesty Revolving Around Near Infrared Saunas

near infrared dishonesty

As previously discussed, near infrared itself, does not heat the body efficiently whatsoever. This means that any sort of near infrared sauna being advertised, actually uses some far infrared to create the sauna effect or any sort of extreme heat. As a whole, whenever infrared saunas exist, they are using some sort of far infrared, otherwise they would not be creating a sauna-like atmosphere. This is why the best option for most people is to simply choose far infrared saunas for their next sauna session.

Full Spectrum Saunas

Full spectrum saunas are some of the newer technology in the realm of infrared saunas. Full spectrum infrared saunas incorporate far, mid and near infrared. This is primarily supposed to get the benefits of a far infrared sauna and near infrared light therapy combined. With the controversy behind near infrared or red light therapy, we can start to see how full spectrum saunas may be a bit of a marketing gimmick.

Full spectrum saunas may give customers the feeling of not missing out on any sort of benefit, when in reality, there are quite a few different costs to full spectrum saunas, not only monetarily speaking.

The Cost of Full Spectrum Saunas

high cost of regular dry sauna bathing with a full spectrum sauna

Full spectrum saunas generally cost substantially more than far infrared saunas due to the design of the full spectrum heating panels. Along with the cost, what is generally advertised is that you can get more benefits by using all different wave lengths, when in reality, there really isn't much more benefit to it. Some promote that mid infrared is a longer wavelength that can penetrate deeper into the body than near infrared, which is true, but far infrared does this same task much better and more optimally. Additionally, with the use of near infrared and the controversy behind near infrared, full spectrum saunas are generally not worth the money.

Misdirection About Infrared Heat

  • Far infrared heats the body the most efficiently out of all infrared wavelengths

  • Mid infrared itself is hotter than far infrared(But will not make your body hotter)

  • Mid infrared is much worse at heating the body than far infrared

  • Mid infrared and near infrared are can be dangerous, whereas far infrared is not

There is a large amount of contradictory information in regards to temperatures and penetration of different types of infrared heat. According to NASA, the wavelength of infrared directly correlates to the length in which they penetrate, near infrared the least, far infrared the most. The case of heat output however, is slightly different. Mid infrared itself is actually hotter than far infrared; however, it is much worse at heating the human body and in long sessions could lead to dry skin or headaches. Far infrared is much more efficient at heating the body, costs less and is safer. It is important to avoid the misdirection about full spectrum saunas because companies tend to state that mid and near infrared is hotter, when in reality, they will not heat the body as well as far infrared alone would, which is the important aspect of sauna use.

Far Infrared vs Near Infrared vs Full Spectrum

Health Benefits of infrared sauna use

With all of the new technology out there, it may be very hard to make a decision on what sort of infrared technology you want in your sauna. Since we have at least established that there are some more infrared sauna benefits than traditional sauna benefits, we can now deep dive into which infrared sauna is right for you. As we have learned, the primary source of heat with an infrared sauna is far infrared. Adding near infrared into your sauna may simply come with more risk than reward. Infrared sauna sessions with full spectrum saunas can be substantially more expensive than a simple far infrared sauna.

We this information we can conclude that in order for you to get the most potential health benefits, while still balancing price and science-backed information, far infrared saunas would likely be the best choice for most people. Far infrared sauna heaters are smaller than full spectrum and require less power. This makes regular sauna usage a breeze. Far infrared saunas work using the most effective wavelength of infrared at heating the body. This allows you to also reduce heat discomfort to the fullest extent. Due to have deeply far infrared can penetrate here are some things you can expect:

  • Pain relief

  • Improve Immune System

  • Reduce High Blood Pressure

  • Sore Muscles Relief

  • Reduce Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

  • Improve Circulation

  • Improve Hormone Secretion

  • Improve Brain Function

  • Many More Improved Health Conditions

Infrared Sauna Takeaways

Infrared saunas are an amazing innovation in the world of saunas. They allow for a much more comfortable and efficient use of heat therapy or heat exposure than traditional dry saunas do. The health benefits associated with an infrared sauna are so vast its important to add one to your daily routine. An infrared sauna is generally easier to fit into your home and will require less energy as well.

When looking into infrared saunas as a whole it is important to keep it simple. There are tons of marketing gimmicks and unnecessary technology when it comes to infrared saunas. We recommend sticking with what is reliable and trusted, which is far infrared saunas.

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1 comment

  • Hi Zachary, I appreciate your article, thank you. I’ve been in the military for 25 years and have inflammation all over due to my job and I am in the market to get a sauna. What’s your take on the added chemotherapy lights? Any real benefit there for the extra 100$. Have any at home 1 person FAR saunas you recommend?
    Thanks Stephen Mudge


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