Infrared Sauna Benefits

Degree Wellness’s 3-in-1 infrared sauna, from Sunlighten, is the only sauna on the market that combines three heating elements in order to deliver near, mid and far infrared energy in a single heater system. In this post, we’ll be talking about all the technologies used to create near infrared (NIR) wavelengths and the therapeutic benefits they offer. (For more information about the other wavelengths, check out the first two posts in our wavelength series: The Unique Health Benefits of Mid Infrared Energy and The Unique Health Benefits of Far Infrared Energy.)

What is Near Infrared Energy?

Near infrared (NIR) is the shortest infrared wavelength on the electromagnetic spectrum. As such, it penetrates the skin’s surface more effectively than either mid or far infrared. Scientific research shows that when delivered at the vital wavelength of 880nm without extreme heat or light, NIR promotes skin renewal, cell health and wound healing.

Not surprisingly, NIR therapy is in high demand because of its unique anti-aging benefits. But most saunas that claim to produce NIR are powered by high-wattage halogen bulbs, and those heaters produce extremely high temperatures that are neither comfortable nor beneficial.

How is Near Infrared Used in Saunas?

To overcome the challenges associated with delivering NIR, NASA research was used to develop a patented LED array that provides NIR at a singular wavelength with minimal variability and virtually undetectable heat and light.

Why is this important? LEDs are most effective because they can trigger a natural photo-biochemical reaction, similar to how plants use chlorophyll to convert sunlight into plant tissue. Research from Dr. Harry Whelan has shown that it takes a specific joule of NIR energy to deliver the wavelength needed to penetrate human tissue. Our NIR LEDs were developed to meet this energy requirement. Plus, they’re capable of pulsing NIR, which is essential for therapeutic uses.

What are the Health Benefits of Near Infrared Exposure?

When delivered by LEDs, NIR has been shown to strengthen the immune system by stimulating white blood cell production, promoting cell regeneration, and reducing cell death. A study done at the Medical College of Wisconsin demonstrated that LED-produced near infrared (NIR) helps promote cell health and regeneration. Another study from The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology concluded that LED near infrared (NIR) restores enzyme activity and reduces cell death by half.

It’s also been shown to significantly improve skin health and appearance, and even help wounds heal faster. A study published in The Journal of Cosmetic and Laser Therapy showed significant improvements in skin appearance after just 12 weeks of near infrared treatments. Participants experienced a reduction in wrinkles and crow’s feet, as well as improved overall skin tone, including softness, smoothness, elasticity, clarity and firmness.

Degree Wellness’ 3-in-1 sauna system includes seven preset wellness programs that blend the optimal wavelengths needed to achieve specific therapeutic results. The anti-aging program was designed using the same wavelengths and intensity used in the study that showed improved skin tone and elasticity. The pain relief program also uses the combined wavelengths best for reduced inflammation, pain relief and cellular repair based on Dr. Whelan’s research.

The relaxation program uses NIR, MIR and FIR wavelengths to relieve muscle tension, induce relaxation and reduce overall stress, while the cardiovascular program uses all three to increase heart rate and circulation to promote healthy blood pressure.

When considering near infrared therapy, it’s important to know the science behind the technology to ensure you’ll get therapeutic results. If you have questions or want to learn more, check out our informational page on infrared saunas.