The ABC of sauna bathing
Sauna - What is it?
The word "sauna" comes from Finnish, because in the far north this type of sweat bath with subsequent cooling is particularly common. The Finns did not invent this pleasant bath and it was not always taken in small log cabins. Many cultures knew and still know sweat baths, because only small amounts of water need to be heated for this - far less than for a bath in the tub.
In the 20th century, saunas gained new attention after the amazing successes of Finnish athletes at the 1924 Paris Olympics: Despite the heat, they outran all their competitors over the 5,000 and 10,000 meter distances. How could that be, when Finland is not known for its particularly high temperatures?
What initially fascinated mainly athletes quickly found its way into public and private baths, fitness studios, wellness oases and even clinics and spa centers. With good reason: For athletes, saunas support regeneration, but also everyone else, thereby stabilizing their health.
Why sauna baths?
Today, relaxation is sought in many ways: Be it through television or going to the cinema, through luxury foods or through extreme sports. But the sauna can be good for health at the same time: By the purposeful setting of a warmth-cold stimulus, the defense system is trained, so that minor infections and "colds" are practically unknown to regular sauna users. Regular sauna users also complain less about so-called functional complaints such as headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, period irregularities, etc.
The heat ensures very strong blood circulation even in those parts of the body that rarely get the benefit of a thorough flushing in everyday life - i.e. the skin and subcutaneous tissue. The latter in particular is a depot of superfluous substances that the detoxification organs have not yet been able to eliminate due to "overwork". They are released from this depot and can thus be flushed out. The good relaxation and at the same time excellent blood circulation of the muscles also removes substances deposited there and at the same time provides oxygen and nutrients. The muscles regenerate much faster - a reason why the sauna is also very popular with athletes.
What happens in the body during this process?
The body's self-regulatory system is a network of nerve impulses, hormonal controls and messenger substances. They run the risk of getting rusty through constant consonance and a comfortable daily routine. The powerful hot-cold stimulus of the sauna, but also the regular deep relaxation of a body that is exposed to constant hectic activity, ensure that the network of self-regulation settles back in and learns to react appropriately - even to stronger stimuli. This is measurably expressed, for example, in the fact that too low a blood pressure rises and too high a blood pressure falls. Taking a sauna better enables the body to regulate back towards the center, i.e. to balance itself.
Not only the body, but also the soul and spirit, which are closely interwoven with it, are addressed by sauna bathing - it therefore has a balancing effect on the whole person. A very pleasant "side effect" of this health stabilizing effect is the fact that the appearance is rejuvenated: Those who come out of the sauna look not only relaxed and vital, but also toned and youthful. Nourishing the skin from the inside through excellent circulation is still the best means for beauty and can achieve more than all creams and lotions together - even if the effect can certainly be increased by simultaneous application!