What is it
Heat bathing has been an accepted practice for healing, recovery, and performance in cultures around the world for ages. Now, scientific evidence is showing that heat bathing is a safe and effective way to improve general wellbeing.
Heat bathing can provide strong, protective effects against cardiovascular disease, inducing responses (and benefits) that mimic moderate exercise. It can lower stress, reduce systemic inflammation, and have acute anti-depressant effects. The effects are dose-dependeant, meaning more heat exposure = more benefits, with consistency being key.
Deliberate heat exposure
Purposefully exposing yourself to heat — whether air (eg. sauna), water (eg. hot tub), stones, or light (eg. sun/infrared) — as a method to improve health and longevity.
Practicing deliberate heat exposure for relaxation and wellbeing.
A popular, effective, and accessible modality of heat bathing. Commonly: a hot room made of wood, with a heat generating stove, causing plenty of sweating and relaxing. Typical temperature ranges from 160°F to 200°F. Sauna is a beloved Finnish tradition, with roots in all nordic countries.
Using deliberate heat exposure to elevate core body temperature over 43°C (107°F). With head exposed, the rest of your body is placed in a thermal chamber for a tightly controlled heat exposure protocol.
Using the sauna 2-3 times per week was associated with 24% lower all-cause mortality and 4-7 times per week decreased all-cause mortality by 40%.
Men who used the sauna 4-7x per week had a 66% lower risk of developing dementia compared to men who used the sauna only one time per week.
One 30-minute post-workout sauna session, 2 times per week, for 3 weeks increased the time that it took for participants to run until exhaustion by 32% compared to their baseline.
A single session of whole-body hyperthermia experienced an acute antidepressant effect that was apparent within one week of treatment and persisted for six weeks after treatment.