There are many possible answers to this question. Sauna and other modes of making the body sweat have been practiced around the world for millennia. And bathers’ motives have varied widely over time — a desire to deeply cleanse the body, strengthen community, induce trance states, perform a spiritual rite, have a purging cry, or rejoice in the fullness of life. Traditional wisdom on the health benefits of sauna has long since been backed by scientific studies endorsing the effectiveness of regular sweats.
Physical Health Benefits Of Sauna
For many of us in the modern world, the idea of taking a sauna bath is closely linked with the relief of aches, pains, and other physical ailments as well as with the alleviation of mental and emotional stress.
Beneficial effects of regular sauna bathing have been studied comprehensively with regard to reducing the symptoms of and the risk to contract these ailments:
- Common Flu
- High Blood Pressure
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Impaired Lung Function (asthma, chronic breathing problems, pneumonia)
- Dementia & Alzheimer’s Disease
- Rheumatic Diseases
- Systemic Inflammation
- Lyme Disease
Practitioners and followers of alternative healing modalities are often quick to attest to the efficacy of all sorts of therapeutic approaches that are not rooted in Western Medicine. For their skeptical counterparts, we list a number of articles exploring academic research on the effects of sauna on the human body.
Beyond pleasure and relaxation, emerging evidence suggests that sauna bathing has several health benefits, which include reduction in the risk of vascular diseases such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease (CVD), stroke, and neurocognitive diseases; nonvascular conditions such as pulmonary diseases including common flu; mortality; treatment of specific skin conditions; as well as pain in conditions such as rheumatic diseases and headache.
Read more studies and articles about the effects of sauna on health:
Lyme Disease: https://www.jci.org/articles/view/12484
Dementia & Alzheimers: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27932366