Visit the Tofino Floating Sauna in British Columbia

Going from cold to hot, and possibly back, “primes the parasympathetic system, balancing the effects of the fight-or-flight response coming in and out,” says functional health expert Dr. Mindy Pelz. “When you go from one extreme to another, you create cellular adaptation, which makes cells stronger. This is great for anyone trying to slow down the aging process or repair the nervous system.

Heating the body’s core temperature to the point of sweating has long been part of a wide variety of ancient healing therapies. The sauna as we know it today – a small, enclosed room with moist or dry heat – was invented by the Finns around 2,000 years ago. Lee Braun, CEO and Founder of Perspire Sauna Studio, says the benefits of sauna use are countless and include increased circulation, improved skin and sleep, improved muscle and joint flexibility, and deep relaxation. “It takes your body from a stressed state to a relaxed state,” he says. “It’s the beginning of all the benefits of the sauna.”

As for the theory that the sauna can “detoxify” the body? Some scientists say there is little truth to this statement because the body processes toxins through the liver and kidneys, not through the skin. Pelz disagrees, saying, “Skin is supposed to flush out toxins, just like it brings in toxins from so many beauty products. Sweat is a carrier molecule. This is how you will eliminate these toxins.

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