Saunas vs. Steam Rooms

Steam rooms and saunas are both great, easy ways to improve your short and long term health. They both help improve circulation, muscle recovery, skin cleansing, and reduce stress. The major differences between them is the type of heat, temperature, and humidity. Saunas are wood-paneled rooms that provides dry heat at a temperature around 160 F, and 5-30% humidity. Steam rooms provide moist heat, at a lower temperature and higher humidity, 110 F and 100%, respectively.

But which one is better? A 2013 study (Petrofsky) found that both dry and moist heat help aid muscle strength and muscle recovery, but the moist heat only took 25% of the time.

An older study (Singh, 1990) studied children with respiratory infections. They found that those using steam therapy showed a decrease in respiratory distress and took a significantly shorter time recovering than those who did no steam therapy.

A common thing you’ve probably heard is that “steam rooms will help fight off a cold”. As there is truth to that statement, it’s probably not the truth you’re hoping for. There hasn’t been proof that moist heat will fight off a cold or infection, BUT, it does help boost your immune system, leading to you being sick less frequently.

Saunas and Steam Rooms both provide excellent health benefits, such as improved blood circulation, workout recovery, and reduce stress.

 

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