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Why You Don’t Lose Weight Sweating: The Truth Behind The Sauna Weight Loss Myth

Just in. Sore muscles and lower back pain sitting you on the couch?
Here's how your trips to the sauna can help loosen up your muscles and recover from exercise faster than before.
Separate truth from fiction before losing weight.

Need to fit into your brides maid gown now and don't know what to do? If you are thinking that hitting the sauna is going to get you there, it's better to stop now and start learning how to hold your breath.

One common mistake people often make is going into a sauna thinking they are going to lose weight. Although you might be able to shed of a few pounds depending on how long you torture yourself, there is more to it than the trainers at your gym want you to hear. Don't stop at knowing that going into a sauna can help you drop weight temporarily. Let's see what else is in store for you.

Why is it so easy to weight off in a sauna?

We can all agree that your weight after leaving a sauna is less than before entering; but how much of this weight loss can you honestly attribute to actually weight loss?

What you really get out of the exchange is that you body, although dripping wet with sweat is left dry. No fat off your back, just a quick escape more to exotic areas like visiting the freezer at whole sales retailer. Don't worry you'll be back to normal in no time. Drinking water will put it all back on for you.

You might be thinking that not drinking water might be of some help; but even then, there lies another problem. Failing to replenish bodily fluids after gross sweating can cause your blood to clot up, which in turn affect how well nutrient are carried throughout your body.

Lose-lose fluid retention after entering a sauna

Replenish fluids immediately after leaving sauna Fail to restore fluids lost while inside sauna
1. Enter sauna
2. Lose fluids due to heat induced perspiration (i.e. a lot of sweating)
3. Replenish fluids immediately after leaving sauna 3. Body is thrown into shock due to lack of fluids
4. Fail to make temporarily weight-loss goals 4. Blood thickens as blood clots begin for form

Though not taking in fluids after leaving a sauna may bring your weight down temporarily, I wouldn't call this a good dieting method or a safe way to lose weight. It should only be taken as a last resort, or not at all. Take queues from professional boxers. The only reason why they're in there in the first place is because they have no other choice. Whether this helps them win fights is a whole other story.

The benefits of going into a sauna goes far beyond diet and exercise

Before we talked about how going into a sauna can help you lose weight temporarily. As much as you would not like to accept, going into a sauna isn't going to help you lose weight in the long run. "What is it good for is its not going to help you lose weight?" you might ask. In fact there are many benefits that you can look forward by going into a sauna. Let's take a quick look at what you should really be expecting out of going into a sauna.

What you really get out of going into a sauna

  • Improved blood circulation through the warming of your body
  • Removal of toxins from body through heat induced sweating

Warming up your body causes your blood vessels to widen, improving your circulation. This in effect helps your body transport nutrients and oxygen in your blood more efficiently and is said to help out with fatigue recovery, stiff shoulders, and lower-back pain. In addition, saunas can help you remove toxins from body through sweating, cleansing your pours and leaving your skin silky smooth.

There are no direct links between the two benefits mentioned above and burning fat, which leaves one to think, "Going into the sauna isn't going to help you slim down." However that doesn't mean that the benefit you get out of improved circulation (fatigue recovery) and sweating (detoxification) can't play an important role in your diet and exercise routine. Moreover, going into a sauna may be what you need to change your mood, relieving stress before or after working out.

Little that it counts; I would like to note some practical exceptions that you should try to keep in mind. Even though you've just ready that going into a sauna isn't going to burn you fat off, don't let that discern you because the results may be one in the same. The fact that going into a sauna warms your body could lead to fat burn. When warm, your metabolic rate increases. This could potential produce a fat burning effect in your body.

Turning the sauna into a competition will burn you

When going to the sauna you may feel an urge to stay in longer or at least until no one around you know when you came in. Sitting naked with people you don't necessarily know can cause you to be competitive in many ways. Although nobody is saying it, "The chips are on the table." This often causes people to stay in much longer than recommended. This sort of "game" taken to extremes has dire consequences.

For a little over ten years, sauna sitting was treated as an endurance sport. The event was eventually canceled because participants, especially those who were willing to go the distance often passed out, burned their skin, and even died. Don't do this with diet and exercise. When you enter the sauna, you should be able to relax, the opposite feeling you get from the semi-competitive environment at the gym.

When starting to go to the sauna, try not to overdo it. Always keep in mind how long you are staying inside the sauna, keeping your intervals consistent. Once you start to feel more comfortable, increase the length of your intervals one minute at a time, sitting no longer than ten minutes per interval. Be sure to rehydrate while on your breaks. If all possible, try to enter the sauna in groups. Going in with a friend is not only safer, but easy than passing time in silence.

By Martin Nicholson

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