Archives for: January 2006
I recently come across a study that seemed to show that repeated sauna therapy improves impaired vascular endothelial function in a patients with coronary risk factors. In the study, sauna therapy was performed with a 60 degrees C far infrared-ray dry sauna for 15 minutes and then bed rest with a blanket for 30 minutes once a day for two weeks. Systolic blood pressure and increased urinary 8-epi-prostaglandin F(2alpha) levels in the sauna group were significantly lower than those in the non-sauna group. These results suggest that repeated sauna therapy may protect against oxidative stress, which leads to the prevention of atherosclerosis.
Studies of other syndromes treated using far infrared sauna include chronic fatigue syndrome, anorexia, fibromyalgia and depression.
Although it has not been proved beyond all reasonable doubt, I tend to believe that far infrared saunas may help eliminate many of the industrial toxins that accumulate in our bodies over a lifetime.
Over 100,000 xenobiotics ('man made' chemicals) now contaminate our food, water, and air --and there are another three new xenobiotics being created every day. Many of these xenobiotics are carcinogenic and quite a few also have estrogenic activity: a bad combination for the female breast.
Here is a woman naturopath's take on xenobiotics and breast tissue. Chilling.
Xenobiotics make their way into the body by ingestion, inhalation, or through the skin. Our detoxication systems are not always perfectly efficient, and some toxins do reach the circulation. The ones that are fat-soluble get stored in the fatty tissues and remain there pretty much indefinitely. For example, in 2005 the Associated Press reported that a toxic component of rocket fuel had been found in the breast milk of women in 18 states. The chemical, perchlorate, can impede adult metabolism and cause retardation in fetuses, among other things. It leaches into groundwater from various military facilities and from there into the body.
One of the most famous is dioxin, which is routinely the subject of a rather lame internet hoax about microwaving with saran wrap, but does enter our bodies through a variety of less questionable ways including, of all things, forest fires.