This year, the wellness world is hot. Literally. Saunas are getting upgraded left, right and centre. Steam rooms are having their moment and temperatures are (physically) rising in gym studios – it’s not just yoga classes turning up the temperature dial. In NY there’s everything from heated Pilates to hot HIIT.
The reason behind it all? The belief that sweating, one of the most coveted sauna benefits, can rid your body of toxins. Sounds ideal, right? You sit in a room or do a class for an hour and like magic, your body is noxious-free. The sins from last night, vanished.
Unfortunately, that’s not how it works. In fact, it doesn’t work at all. Sweating is your body’s inbuilt air conditioning system, so its purpose is to regulate your body’s core temperature, not rid your body of toxins. So what’s lost? According to UAMS Health, 99% of your sweat is made up of water and small bits of carb, slats, protein and urea. Only 1% of toxic metals is lost through this method.
So while sweating does release some toxins, it should not be thought of as one of the main sauna benefits.
Which leaves the question, how can you get rid of toxins in your body? The answer: through your kidneys, liver and other organs when you go to the toilet, not a hot yoga class. Incorporating sulfur-rich foods such as broccoli, kale and cauliflower, in your daily diet will help reduce inflammation so your organs can function better. Likewise, body brushing daily will aid lymphatic drainage by stimulating blood circulation and encouraging toxins to pass through urine or feces.
Our advice? Although saunas can help to increase blood flow and hot yoga can limber you up, they won’t detoxify your insides in 60-minutes or less. Go for the stress relieving savasana not only the sweat.
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