In Bondi, health trends are always popping off, and I am always on one wagon or another. One I’ve resisted for quite some time? The Infrared Sauna. The reason? I’m an uncomfortable sweater, save for the odd Bikram sesh, I mostly steer clear of exercise that induces it. But like most things that I’ve one eighty-d on in my lifetime, it was one too many scrolls past sauna selfies on the ‘gram that encouraged me to haul my arse from the safe confines of Surry Hills to Bondi’s Lux Allure, to give the infrared sauna a red hot go.*
It should be noted that my appointment just happened to coincide with the tail-end of a sinus infection – which made me question, whether spending 45 minutes in 60-degree heat was wise? Especially as I was already struggling making it from my desk to the loo without getting dizzy. While health benefits of infrared saunas are well documented: aiding in muscular aches and pains, heightened immunity, assisting in weight-loss et cetera. I didn’t expect the results I got. After my one session, I was dripping in sweat (not exactly a positive for me), mentally relaxed, my freshly worked muscles were less sore, and the sinus pain and faint head cold I’d been experiencing, were minimised. It was like a miracle, and I am a cynic (it’s kind of my job to be), so I sat down with Lux’s owner Carly Porter, to ask all my burning questions. See what I did there.
TB: What exactly is an infrared sauna?
CP: Infrared is an energy which penetrates down into the core of the body, traditional sauna’s don’t do this, they get hot and you sweat from the heat. Infrared gets into the core of the body and helps to push the toxins out from there.
TB: What are the benefits?
CP: The main benefits can be for sickness. It’s kind of like a fever in a way, where when you have one it sweats everything out and rids the body of toxins. It will burn the core, heat you up, push everything out, get rid of anything bad lingering in the body. It also helps relieve arthritis, relaxes everything, helps with weight loss- because your heart rate increases when your body heats from the inside, your body will burn calories in an attempt to get your heart rate back to normal.
TB: How often should/can you use it?
CP: You can use it every day. If you have a fever already, it’s best not to. ED’s note: NOTE TO SELF. But if you have a general cold or anything it’s great for that. If you’re trying to lose weight it’s great in conjunction with exercise, dieting, it will assist with that process.
TB: Are there long-term effects? Positive or negative?
CP: No negative. Continued use can help get rid of arthritis and help to keep disease and sickness away. ED’s note: There isn’t a lot of science to back this up at this point, however, I can firmly advocate for it helping clear up my sinus infection.
TB: What should you do in preparation for the treatment?
CP: Lots of water will help with the detoxing process.
TB: What should you do post-treatment?
CP: Again, lots of water! And not putting chemicals back onto your skin post-sauna. Your skin has just sweat all of the toxins out, so steer clear of products with nasties that your skin will absorb.
Words and interview: Ella Jane