Sauna use increases levels of two hormones called norepinephrine, which increases focus and attention, and prolactin, which promotes myelin growth, helping your brain to function faster and repair nerve cell damage.
There’s More Than One Reason To Use Saunas
You’ve probably heard about how Hollywood celebrities are using infrared saunas for beauty. You may have even heard about how Harvard Medical School says men who use saunas have fewer heart problems.
Did you know that many people are using saunas to biohack their way to success?
The Brain-Body Sauna Connection
During sauna use, nerve cells release neurotrophic factor proteins (e.g. BDNF) that jumpstarts brain stem cells to produce new neurons. BDNF also acts as a catalyst for chemicals that promote better brain health. Neuromotors make your muscles listen to your brain and as we age, our muscles atrophy due to neuromotor degradation. BDNF helps the brain continue to communicate with muscles by preventing this degradation.
BDNF also protects your brain from degradation. Studies already show that exercise has a beneficial impact on your brain tissue. This is why people think clearer after a workout and why most people work out in the morning. It, quite literally, helps prevent, and even reverse, brain degeneration as much as it prevents and reverses age-related muscle atrophy. BDNF increases the growth of new brain cells and improves the survival of existing ones. It increases neuroplasticity, which is important for learning and long-term memory. Low BDNF has been linked with both depression and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
Here’s where saunas come into play: Sauna use increases brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), since heat stress in conjunction with exercise has been shown to increase BDNF levels more than just exercise alone.
Sauna use also increases levels of two hormones called norepinephrine, which increases focus and attention, and prolactin, which promotes myelin growth, helping your brain to function faster and repair nerve cell damage. Studies have shown that heat stress from exposure to a sauna increases endorphins significantly.
When you look at how sauna use can change your body and mind for the better, it makes sense to invest in one for your home, gym, or office. Contact us today to chat about which Salus Sauna can help you unlock your potential.
For additional reading:
van Praag, H., Christie, B. R., Sejnowski, T. J. & Gage, F. H. Running enhances neurogenesis, learning, and long-term potentiation in mice. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 96, 13427-13431 (1999).
Maniam, J. & Morris, M. J. Voluntary exercise and palatable high-fat diet both improve behavioural profile and stress responses in male rats exposed to early life stress: role of hippocampus. Psychoneuroendocrinology 35, 1553-1564, doi:10.1016/j.psyneuen.2010.05.012 (2010).
Pedersen, B. K. Muscle as a Secretory Organ. Comprehensive Physiology (2013).
Koltyn, K. F., Robins, H. I., Schmitt, C. L., Cohen, J. D. & Morgan, W. P. Changes in mood state following whole-body hyperthermia. International journal of hyperthermia : the official journal of European Society for Hyperthermic Oncology, North American Hyperthermia Group 8, 305-307 (1992).
Liu, X. L. et al. [Therapeutic effect of whole body hyperthermia combined with chemotherapy in patients with advanced cancer]. Zhong nan da xue xue bao. Yi xue ban = Journal of Central South University. Medical sciences 31, 350-352 (2006).
Goekint M, Roelands B, Heyman E, Njemini R, Meeusen R. Influence of citalopram and environmental temperature on exercise-induced changes in BDNF. Neurosci Lett. 2011;494(2):150-154. doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2011.03.001.
Sorenson, M., et al. Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor is Decreased in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Multiple Sclerosis 2014
Leppaluoto, J. et. al. 1986 Endocrine effects of repeated sauna bathing