New studies posted in the journal of Neurology found that regular sauna sessions were correlated with a significant reduction in risk of stroke. The findings were corroborated with multiple different studies. According to a researcher from the University of Bristol, those who took a sauna more than 4 times per week were 60% less likely to have a stroke than those who did not use the sauna.
The most likely reason for this health benefit is due to the release of heat shock proteins in the body. Heat shock proteins are a type of protein produced by the cell in response to temperature conditions that put the body under stress. They were first discovered to be released after exposure to high heat (hense the name 'heat shock') but have also been found after exposure to cold temperatures.
These proteins are important because they trigger renewal and reparation in the body. Benefits include:
- quicker repair of broken tissues
- improved blood flow
- increase of growth hormone
- release of beta endorphin (a euphoric hormone)
- release of BDNF hormone (lowers anxiety & increases long term memory)
Some ways to release heat shock (or cold shock) proteins in your body:
- Steam Shower
- Hot Yoga
- Cold Showers (for a few minutes at the end of your shower)
- HIIT Exercise