If you are thinking of purchasing an in home sauna, you have probably heard of all the health and longevity benefits that come from regular infrared sauna sessions. These include slowing down the aging process by boosting your mitochondria to make you look and feel 10 years younger!
What Is Mitochondria?
For our bodies to function, they need energy. Even when you are sitting down and watching TV, your body is producing enough energy to power seven 10-watt light bulbs. Where do we get all this energy? Well, most of it comes from these microscopic structures called mitochondria. They are found inside the body’s cells. Although they are minute in size, they are the powerhouses that support our bodies.
They are responsible for taking fat, sugar and protein from what we consume, mixing it with oxygen to convert it into energy for our cells and tissues. Mitochondria are unique since they have their own DNA that is very important to this energy conversion process.
The DNA in mitochondria is different from the DNA found in the cell’s nucleus. Even though nuclear DNA rules our physical characteristics, mitochondrial DNA does not. However, both types of DNA must be healthy so the mitochondria can work properly.
If there is damage in either, it could cause the mitochondria to stop working effectively, which restrains them from converting fuel into energy. If the amount of faulty mitochondria reaches a dangerous level, the body’s cells start to run low on energy, fail, and even die.
Because mitochondria are responsible for many various functions, there are actually hundreds of different mitochondrial diseases. The symptoms of these diseases include fatigue, speech disorders, hearing problems, heart issues, muscle weakness, bowel problems, liver disease, and in some cases, it could even be fatal.
The assortment of symptoms that are linked with mitochondrial disease makes it very difficult for doctors to diagnose. Although there are some advanced breakthroughs in modern medicine and holistic therapies to understand how it develops, how it is inherited, and how mitochondrial disease can be treated.
How Does Heat Therapy Boost Mitochondria in Cells?
When you own a JNH LIfestyles in house sauna like a 2 person sauna, you can take advantage of receiving regular heat therapy that increases the efficiency of your body’s mitochondria. When we sit in an in home sauna and expose our bodies to the heat of the infrared wavelengths, the energetic requirements of our mitochondria begin to rise and they react by utilizing oxygen in the blood more efficiently. This is a process known as oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS). Research has proven that exposure to heat stress for six days can boost mitochondrial function by up to 28%.
When we refer to heat therapy in a sauna, it usually means 15 to 30 minutes of exposure to temperatures that are around 110-140°F.
If you are wondering how to achieve mitochondrial health and overall longevity in an in home sauna, it’s important to read about this finding: There was an epidemiological study in Finland that observed 2,300 men, which experienced a reduced rate of all-cause mortality because of their increased heat exposure. Throughout the study, these men had four to seven weekly sauna sessions that averaged out from 11 to 20 minutes which resulted in the lowest all-cause mortality. However, even just one session per week revealed some compelling health benefits.
How Does Near-Infrared Therapy Regenerate Mitochondria?
Near-infrared therapy has a great impact on mitochondria since this heat and light therapy activates the mitochondria’s function as a detoxifier, repairer, and regenerator. You can find this additional advantage in our full spectrum collection, the Tosi.
An infrared sauna can trigger the cytochrome oxidase photoreceptor enzyme in the body’s mitochondria. Continually, the light energy stimulates metabolic pathways that allow for DNA repair and correct regulation and enzymes that manage gene transcription and expression. Additionally, infrared sauna therapy gently heats the body up, which forces blood to the skin’s surface, boosts circulation, releases damaging toxins out of the body, and provides balance to the nervous system.
How Does Mitochondria Rejuvenation Improve Our Health and Increase Our Longevity?
As you have read, the main benefits of an infrared sauna are that the hot conditions provide a hyperthermic conditioning effect that puts the body through a change when it is exposed to heat stress. This is called “hormesis,” the amazing event where the body enjoys health benefits when exposed to low doses of a stressor, which in this situation is the heat. Here are a few ways that this heat stress can rejuvenate our mitochondria, and in turn, increase our longevity.
Slow Down the Ageing Process and Increase Longevity
This is the one factor that everybody wants to know more about. The most trusted theory of how infrared saunas improve mitochondria health--which results in better health and longevity--is that the heat from the sauna makes the body produce heat shock proteins (HSP). These heat shock proteins have been known to increase longevity because they encourage cellular autophagy, which is the repair and recycling of damaged cells, and also stops any further damage by helping to supply antioxidants such as glutathione.
Furthermore, heat triggers a protein called FOXO3 that has shown to slow down aging and prolong lives. FOXO3 leads a lot of other genes that are needed for important cellular processes: balancing stress resistance, metabolism cell cycle arrest and apoptosis (cell death).
Overall, an infrared sauna is an optimal method to expose the body to healthy heat that stimulates HSP and FOXO3 which helps you reap many health benefits and keeps you around for longer.
Increase the Body’s Cells
Many biologists like to think of mitochondria as the batteries that power our body’s cells, therefore we need them for our health and longevity. Ideally, you are aiming for lots of big, strong mitochondria that will keep you fit and healthy as we start to advance in years. If you have mitochondria that are minuscule and feeble, then your body will be too! More than that, this can accelerate the aging process and cause you to suffer from many diseases.
Thankfully, heat stress has proven to encourage a positive impact on mitochondrial health, which supports the body to generate more mitochondria, makes mitochondria larger and more powerful, repairs and recycles existing mitochondria, and provides better protection for your mitochondria against oxidative stress.
In general, sitting in an infrared sauna for a few minutes each day means you are providing you and your body a greater ability to produce energy, stay fit, improved health, the capacity to operate at optimal levels, and to live a long and happy life.