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Using a Sauna Frequently Can Help Lower The Risk of High Blood Pressure

The study suggests sauna bathing may decrease systemic blood pressure through various biological mechanisms.

AFP Relaxnews

Updated:October 2, 2017, 3:33 PM IST
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Using a Sauna Frequently Can Help Lower The Risk of High Blood Pressure
New research from has found that frequent sauna use can help to lower the risk of high blood pressure. (Photo courtesy: AFP Relaxnews/ Iakov Filimonov/ shutterstock.com)
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New European research from has found that frequent sauna use can help keep blood pressure in check, and the more you visit, the lower the risk of high blood pressure.

Carried out by the University of Eastern Finland, the follow-up population-based study looked at 1,621 men aged 42 to 60 years and without hypertension (high blood pressure) who were taking part in the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study (KIHD).

The men were divided into three groups based on their sauna bathing habits -- those taking a sauna once a week, 2-3 times a week, or 4-7 times a week.

After following the men for an average of 22 years the team found that those who frequented a sauna 2-3 times a week had a 24% lower risk of hypertension than those who went only once a week, and those who used a sauna 4-7 times a week benefited from a 46% lower risk.

The team have also previously found that regular sauna bathing can also reduce the risk of sudden cardiac death, cardiovascular disease, and all-cause mortality. As high blood pressure is also known to be one of the most important risk factors of cardiovascular diseases, the new findings suggest that the reduced risk of hypertension could be the mechanism underlying the decreased cardiovascular risk associated with sauna use.

The team suggested that sauna bathing may decrease systemic blood pressure through various biological mechanisms. Regular sauna bathing improves endothelial function -- the function of the inside layer of blood vessels -- which has beneficial effects on systemic blood pressure, while sweating removes fluid from the body which can also help decrease blood pressure levels.

Sauna bathing may also lower systemic blood pressure thanks to its relaxing effect on both the body and mind.

Another recent analysis of the KIHD study, published in the European Journal of Epidemiology, also found that frequent sauna bathing could also reduce the risk of pulmonary diseases.

These findings can be found published online in the American Journal of Hypertension.
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