Will Sauna Help Me Burn Fat?

Posted on 25 April 2024

In the buffet of life, where the menu sometimes includes a side of unwanted pounds, many are calling for the check, with a whopping 45% of us trying to lose weight. It’s not just about squeezing into those "someday-jeans.” Weight loss can help you feel more confident, energetic, and healthy. Is a sauna up to the task? Sure, you’ll leave every sauna a little lighter, but that’s not a long-term solution. Any initial weight loss is mild dehydration from the water weight you’ve sweated out if you don’t rehydrate while in the sauna. While there are more efficient ways to lose weight (ahem, put down the cookie), every advantage counts. If you’re after sustainable, health-forward strategies for shedding pounds, SaunaFin's luxurious home saunas are a relaxing pathway to accelerate fat loss and enhance your metabolic health. Here's how using a sauna can be a game-changer in your weight loss journey.

Turning Up the Heat on Metabolism

Time in the sauna elevates your heart rate, which also kicks your metabolism into a slightly higher gear, encouraging your body to burn calories at an elevated rate. Researchers found that healthy men experienced a 25-33% increase in their metabolism after visiting a hot Finnish sauna twice a day for a week. Each session raised their body temperature slightly and led to a weight loss of about 1.5 to 2 pounds from sweating. Their heart rates also increased, indicating their bodies worked harder, though they gradually adapted to the sauna heat over the week. Time in the sauna immediately increases calorie burn and stimulates growth hormone production, which plays a pivotal role in muscle maintenance and fat metabolism. While enjoying the soothing embrace of a SaunaFin sauna, your body works to cool itself, boosting your calorie burn and contributing to your overall fat-loss efforts.

Fight Stress for Weight Loss

Stress is the maraca-like click of the fingers that calls for weight gain. Nerve-wracking situations signal your body to store fat, especially around the midsection, as it elevates the hormone cortisol, a known stress-induced weight gain accomplice. Fascinating research in the Journal of Human Kinetics found that time in the sauna boosts the immune system by increasing white blood cell counts and lowering cortisol levels. Long-term stress can make you crave comfort foods, and research at the University College London linked stress to higher levels of obesity. Enjoying a little downtime in the sauna does more than just help you mentally unwind; it might also be a gentle yet effective way to support your body's natural weight management and stress reduction processes. 

What Type of Sauna Creates the Most Weight Loss? 

Whether they're barrel saunas or custom indoor sauna kits, all saunas will kick start your weight loss. The most effective sauna for weight loss, according to research, appears to be the infrared variety when used consistently for 45 minutes at least three times a week over an eight-week period, with an optimal temperature setting of 50 - 60ºC. This regimen, inspired by a study from Binghamton University in New York, showed people lost an average of 0.5% body fat weekly, totaling around 4% over the 8 weeks. Intriguingly, the key to these benefits lies in the warmth of a home sauna and how it raises your body's core temperature. Everyone’s weight loss will be unique, with obese people seeing the most significant reductions. How long you spend in the sauna can also play a crucial role, as shown by a study where men lost up to 0.65 kg in a 40-minute session. These stats underscore the progressive increase in calories burned the longer you stay in the sauna. This loss is sweat, so it’s best to hydrate and get plenty of electrolytes. While sauna sessions do help with weight loss, they should complement, rather than replace, the foundational pillars of weight loss: a balanced diet and regular physical activity.

How to Use Your Sauna for Weight Loss

Saunas can be a serious part of your weight loss journey. To leverage the weight-shedding potential of the sauna, consider these tips that harmonize with your body fat goals.

  • Stay Hydrated: Drink at least 16oz (500ml) of water 30 minutes before entering the sauna. Enhance hydration by adding 2-3g of Celtic Sea salt or Himalayan rock salt to a separate glass of water to help you hydrate even better. 
  • Get Comfy: Tailor the sauna's heat to how you feel. Aim for a comfortable 20 minutes while aiming for longer each time until you can hit 40 minutes. 
  • Relax and Breathe: Try deep breathing and relaxation techniques to beat stress, indirectly supporting weight loss by reducing cortisol levels.
  • Aim for 3-4 sessions per week: Consistently adding sauna sessions into your wellness routine can amplify your weight-loss efforts. 
  • Listen to Your Body: A sauna can help your recovery from exercise so you can train harder tomorrow, but if you feel uncomfortable, step out, cool down, and prioritize your well-being.

A Warm Path to Weight Loss

While sauna sessions are not a standalone solution for weight loss, they complement a balanced diet and regular exercise. Integrating sauna sessions into your weight loss plan helps combine tradition and science and offers an enjoyable method to enhance wellness. As part of a balanced lifestyle emphasizing nutritious eating and regular physical activity, time in the sauna is a powerful way to support the journey toward achieving a healthy weight. The unique combination of heat-induced calorie burn, metabolic enhancement, stress reduction, and detoxification means the sauna is the Swiss Army knife in your weight management arsenal. SaunaFin’s commitment to quality and innovation ensures that each sauna session contributes to your health goals, making your path to weight loss effective and a journey of relaxation and renewal. Your transformation begins with SaunaFin - where warmth meets wellness on your weight-loss path.

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