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Ways a sauna helps decrease bloating

3 Ways a sauna helps decrease bloating

If you often feel bloated, you’re likely searching for ways to feel better. Some people wonder if using a sauna can help with bloating. Let’s explore whether saunas really help with bloating.

What is bloating?

In bloating, your belly feels full and tight. It can be caused by various factors, including constipation, gas, stress, anxiety, smoking, digestive disorders, or poor eating habits. 

Common signs and symptoms of bloating include vomiting, stomach pain, feeling full quickly, constipation, excess gas, heartburn, and frequent burping or farting.

Discomfort caused by bloating can be highly distracting, making it challenging to concentrate and perform daily tasks efficiently. 

This discomfort can also lead to increased feelings of anxiety and stress, further affecting sleep quality. The overall impact of bloating on one’s life is significant, underscoring the importance of addressing it promptly to regain comfort and improve overall well-being.

 

What is a sauna?

While saunas come in different types, the two most common and popular ones are traditional and infrared saunas.

Traditional saunas are typically heated with electric heaters or wood-burning stoves, reaching temperatures between 70 and 90°C. 

Infrared saunas, on the other hand, operate at cooler temperatures, ranging from 38 to 65°C. Saunas are commonly constructed from various types of wood, including spruce, redwood, hemlock, poplar, basswood, or cedar. 

The choice of wood can influence the sauna’s aesthetic appeal and durability. Despite the differences in temperature and heating methods, both types of saunas offer numerous health benefits. 

These include improved heart health, pain relief, relaxation, stress reduction, enhanced circulation, and better skin health.

However, individuals with medical conditions such as fever, pregnancy, recent injuries or surgeries, heart conditions, low blood pressure, or sensitive skin should consult a doctor before using a sauna or may need to avoid sauna use altogether.

 

Does the sauna help with bloating?

Saunas aren’t proven to directly alleviate bloating. However, they can indirectly help by reducing stress, water retention, and improving digestion, which are common causes of bloating.

 

3 Ways a sauna helps decrease bloating

Sauna helps with bloating by reducing stress

Research suggests that sauna sessions can provide significant benefits for individuals with high-stress professions such as firefighters, police officers, and military personnel in the US. These professions often entail various stressors like lack of sleep, poor eating habits, and psychological stress. Regular sauna use has been shown to enhance their well-being by reducing stress levels [1]. Dr. Michael Ruscio, DC, explains that stress can disrupt the natural balance of good bacteria in the gut, leading to overgrowth of certain bacteria and causing digestive issues like bloating. He also notes that stress can make you feel bloated even when you’re not. High stress levels are a major cause of bloating, and saunas offer an effective way to alleviate stress, which can help reduce bloating.

Increased Sweating Reduces Water Retention to Alleviate Bloating

Sauna use helps reduce water retention, a common cause of bloating. Water retention can be triggered by factors such as insufficient protein or vitamin B1 (thiamine) in the diet. Additionally, certain medications, including high blood pressure medications, corticosteroids, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, can cause the body to hold onto extra water, leading to fluid retention [2]. 

According to a study, an overweight young man who rarely uses the sauna can lose 0.65 liters of fluid through sweat after four 10-minute sauna sessions at 90°C (194°F) with 5-minute breaks in between [3]. This sweating induces significant fluid loss, which helps reduce water retention. By alleviating water retention, sauna use can effectively reduce bloating.

Sauna improves your digestive system that help with bloating

When a person uses a sauna, the heat increases their heart rate and causes blood vessels to widen, enhancing blood circulation [4]. Improved blood circulation aids digestion by increasing blood flow to the digestive organs.

Saunas are also renowned for their detoxification benefits. The heat-induced sweating helps flush out toxins and impurities from the skin, which in turn supports a healthy digestive system. A healthy digestive system can help reduce bloating, making you feel more comfortable.

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