Sauna enthusiasts and wellness seekers rejoice! The evidence is mounting up and there’s no denying the incredible health benefits of sauna bathing, a practice deeply rooted in Nordic/Baltic culture. A recent study by the Mayo Clinic titled "Does the Combination of Finnish Sauna Bathing and Other Lifestyle Factors Confer Additional Health Benefits? A Review of the Evidence", offers compelling insights into how sauna bathing can significantly enhance our health and wellbeing.
We have previously written about the benefits of sauna for athletic performance and have long extolled the ancient traditional practice of sauna’s virtues for all round physical and mental health betterment. So, this latest study diving into the data to highlight just why the Nordic culture of sauna is so popular provides even more reasons to embrace your inner Finn and give yourself some valuable “me time” among the welcoming steam.
The Healing Power of Heat
Sauna bathing is so much more than just a leisure activity; it's a gateway to better health. The Mayo Clinic study reveals that regular sauna sessions can reduce the risk of numerous diseases, including hypertension, cardiovascular disease, dementia and various respiratory conditions.
It even suggests that sauna bathing can improve musculoskeletal disorders and extend our lifespan! So, from lower back pain through to breathing difficulties or stimulation of the vagus nerve, sauna might just be the answer to better health.
A Synergy of Wellness
What's truly remarkable is how sauna bathing works in tandem with other healthy lifestyle choices. The study highlights that frequent sauna use can amplify the benefits of physical activities and cardiorespiratory fitness. It's like turbocharging your existing health, wellness and exercise regime!
As a complement to an active and healthy lifestyle, regular use of a sauna, to traditional Nordic standards (such as alternating intervals of hot steam and cold water immersion) can help you achieve better results, both physically and mentally.
More Than Just Relaxation
The benefits of sauna bathing extend beyond relaxation (though of course this is not to be underestimated). The study links these benefits to several factors, including reduced blood pressure, anti-inflammatory effects, antioxidant properties and improved cardiovascular and immune function. It's a holistic approach to health that addresses multiple aspects of our wellbeing.
Living in stressful times, there has never been greater need to alleviate everyday tension. The sauna acts as both a haven from the day to day as well as a healer, providing solace and soothing to your weary body and mind.
A Protective Shield
Additionally, the study suggests that sauna bathing can offset the adverse effects of various risk factors like high blood pressure and systemic inflammation. It's like having a protective shield that mitigates health risks, making sauna an essential part of a proactive health strategy.
It shouldn’t be considered a cure-all for your ills, but sauna bathing will certainly support your existing health and wellbeing efforts. It’s about recognising your body’s needs and acting on them.
Embracing the Sauna Lifestyle
Incorporating sauna sessions into our weekly routine can be a game-changer for our health. The study recommends 3 to 7 sauna sessions per week (far from uncommon for your average Finn), each lasting about 15 to 20 minutes, to reap the most benefits. That may sound like a lot if you’re not used to a regular sauna bathing routine but really it's a small investment of time for a significant boost in health and longevity.
Of course, the best way to enjoy regular sauna bathing’s benefits is by having access to your own luxury garden sauna so it’s always there when you need it (but then we would say that!)
Travelling to a spa or health club to use their wellbeing facilities such as steam rooms and saunas adds a potential hurdle to keep you from taking advantage on a regular basis. You eliminate that hurdle when you only need head out into your own garden to grab some valuable daily sauna time. What’s more, you needn’t share it with anyone else (though of course community is very much a part of the traditional sauna culture too – but sometimes a solo self-reflection steam session can be just what the doctor ordered.)
Are You Getting Enough Sauna in Your Life?
Don’t just take our word for it, the health benefits of sauna bathing are profound and far-reaching, and upheld by science. This study not only validates the age-old tradition of sauna bathing but also encourages us to embrace it as a vital part of our modern lifestyle. Whether you're a fitness enthusiast or simply looking for natural ways to enhance your health, incorporating sauna sessions into your routine could be the key to unlocking a healthier, happier you.
Remember, your journey to wellness can be both enjoyable and transformative. So, why not consider adding a home sauna, such as our Tuli small home sauna, to your wellness routine? It's not just an investment in your home; it's an investment in your long-term health and wellbeing.