THE BENEFITS OF THE SAUNA REDUCE THE RISK OF HYPERTENSION UP TO 46% IN ADULTS
Of Finnish origin, the sauna is an ideal place to contribute to the well-being. Not to be confused with the hammam – which originates in the Moorish bath and the Roman baths, from the Maghreb to the Middle East – the heat of the sauna is dry and felt more intensely, while the hammam diffuses a warmth wet.
Furnished room or small wooden hut, the sauna is a dry heat bath whose temperature varies from 45 ° C to 100 ° C, depending on the type of sauna: dry sauna, wet sauna or steam sauna. The practice of the sauna would go back more than 2,000 years in the Nordic countries, and more specifically in Finland.
The sauna is an element that often constitutes the panoply of places synonymous with well-being and relaxation. Indeed, a study published in September 2017 in the American Journal of Hypertension confirms the positive effects of sauna practice.
Previously, we already knew that sauna is good for health, but the fact that it is associated with reduced cardiovascular risk, and the mechanisms underlying this beneficial effect are not fully understood. Researchers wanted to evaluate the relationship between sauna and the risk of incident hypertension.
GOING TO THE SAUNA REGULARLY MAINTAINS A GOOD BLOOD PRESSURE
Going to the sauna frequently reduces the risk of high blood pressure, according to an in-depth study carried out at the University of Eastern Finland (UFE). The risk of developing high blood pressure was nearly 50% lower in men who went to the sauna 4 to 7 times a week compared to men who went sauna only once a week.
Previously, the same researchers have already shown that frequent sauna baths reduce the risk of sudden death by cardiac arrest, cardiovascular mortality and all causes.
High blood pressure is considered one of the most important risk factors for cardiovascular disease. According to the research group, the underlying protective mechanisms may include the beneficial effects of a regular sauna on blood pressure.
THE STUDY OF THE BENEFITS OF THE SAUNA ON A FOLLOW-UP OF 22 YEARS!
This study of the risk factor for ischemic heart disease (coronary artery disease) involved 1,621 middle-aged men living in the eastern part of Finland. Study participants had no blood pressure greater than 140/90 mmHg or with hypertension diagnosed as the basis of the study.
Depending on their “consumption” habits of the sauna, the men were divided into three groups, by frequency of time spent in the sauna: those who take a sauna once a week, 2 to 3 times a week, or 4 to 7 times per week.
During an average follow-up of 22 years, 15.5% of men developed clinically defined hypertension. The risk of hypertension decreased by 24% in men with a sauna frequency of 2 to 3 times per week and 46% among men who went sauna 4-7 times a week.
WHY DOES THE SAUNA DECREASE BLOOD PRESSURE?
The sauna can lower systemic blood pressure by different biological mechanisms. During the sauna bath, the body temperature can rise to 2 ° C, which causes vasodilation of the vessels.Going to the sauna regularly improves endothelial function (dilation of blood vessels and blood flow), that is, the function of the inner layer of blood vessels, which has beneficial effects on systemic blood pressure.
Sweating, in turn, removes fluid from the body, which contributes to decreased blood pressure levels. In addition, the sauna can also reduce systemic blood pressure due to the overall relaxation of the body and mind. Finally, a recent analysis of the same study also revealed that those who go to the sauna often have a lower risk of lung disease. You know what else you have to do if you have a sauna near you or the opportunity to squatter a friend’s (nice) one, or buy one if you have that chance!