Skip to Content

The Detoxifying Power of Infrared Saunas: More Than Just Heat

In the quest for better health and wellness, many have turned to saunas as a natural method of detoxification. Traditional saunas have long been celebrated for their benefits, but in recent years, infrared saunas have gained popularity for their unique ability to induce a deeper, more effective sweat. One of the most compelling arguments for infrared saunas is the claim that they help the body release more toxins compared to traditional saunas. But why is this the case? Let's explore the science behind why infrared sauna-induced sweating contains more toxins than sweating in a traditional sauna.

Understanding the Basics: Infrared vs. Traditional Saunas
Traditional saunas use a heat source, typically a stove, to warm the air around you. This, in turn, heats your body from the outside in. The temperature in a traditional sauna can reach anywhere from 150 to 195 degrees Fahrenheit (65 to 90 degrees Celsius). This high heat induces sweating and offers various health benefits, including improved circulation and relaxation.

Infrared saunas, on the other hand, use infrared light to penetrate the skin directly and heat the body from the inside out. The temperatures in an infrared sauna are typically lower, ranging from 120 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit (49 to 60 degrees Celsius). Despite the lower temperature, the body can produce a more profound sweat in an infrared sauna. The lower heat makes it possible to exercise in the sauna too. The HOTWORX 3D Training Method combines isometrics and HIIT with heat and infrared energy inside of an infrared sauna offering 12 different workout types for customers to choose from or to combine for cross-training purposes. Exercise also promotes sweating, so the combination of working out in an infrared sauna environment packs a one two punch for sweating and for detox.

The Science of Sweating and Detoxification
Sweating is one of the body's natural mechanisms for detoxification. Through sweat, the body can eliminate various toxins, including heavy metals, chemicals, and other impurities. The depth and volume of sweat produced play a crucial role in how effectively these toxins are expelled. As reported on

"One of the ways you can enhance your body’s detoxification processes is by flushing out the toxins,” says Dr. Casey Kelley, MD, founder and medical director of Case Integrative Health. “Using an infrared sauna is a form of this. Sweating is a great way to mobilize toxins in your body. Many toxins like arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury can all be excreted through sweat.”

Infrared Saunas and Deep Tissue Heating
The key difference lies in how infrared saunas heat the body. Infrared light penetrates the skin and heats the body on a deeper level than the ambient heat of traditional saunas. This deep tissue heating can reach about 1.5 inches (4 centimeters) into the skin. As a result, the sweat produced in an infrared sauna is not only from the surface but also from deeper layers of the skin.

This deep heating effect means that the sweat generated in an infrared sauna can contain more cellular-level toxins. Studies have shown that infrared sauna sessions can increase the excretion of heavy metals like mercury, lead, and cadmium, which are often stored in the deeper layers of the skin and adipose (fat) tissue.

Increased Circulation and Metabolic Rate
Infrared saunas also stimulate circulation and increase the metabolic rate. The infrared light causes blood vessels to dilate, promoting better blood flow. This enhanced circulation helps transport toxins from various tissues to the surface of the skin more efficiently. Additionally, the increased metabolic rate encourages the body to mobilize and eliminate stored toxins.

Enhanced Sweat Composition
Research suggests that the sweat produced in an infrared sauna contains a higher concentration of toxins compared to sweat from a traditional sauna. A study published in the Journal of Environmental and Public Health found that the sweat from heat had significantly higher levels of heavy metals and other environmental toxins. (1) This indicates that the deep, penetrating heat of infrared saunas is more effective in releasing these harmful substances from the body.

While both traditional and infrared saunas offer numerous health benefits, the unique properties of infrared saunas make them a superior choice for those seeking a more effective detoxification method. The ability of infrared light to penetrate deeper into the skin and heat the body from within results in a more profound, toxin-rich sweat. This, combined with increased circulation and metabolic activity, makes infrared saunas an excellent tool for enhancing the body's natural detoxification processes.

As always, it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new health regimen, including sauna use, to ensure it is safe and appropriate for your individual health needs. But for those looking to maximize their detox efforts, the deep sweat induced by infrared saunas might just be the key to unlocking better health and well-being.


right arrow
stephen smith headshot
Stephen P. Smith, MA
CEO and Creator of HOTWORX, Author, Former National Collegiate Bodybuilding Champion and Arena Football Player, Certified Professional Trainer


Sign up to receive weekly emails:

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.