In the mid-eighteenth century, a young man named James Watt sat by the fireplace, gazing earnestly at the teakettle on the stove. Watching the steam rise from the boiling kettle fascinated him. This experience led to the commencement of a lifelong fascination with steam.
It also led to his recognition as being the inventor of the first modern (and practical) steam engine. In the years since then, the progress in science has helped people become aware of the numerous benefits of steam.
Historically, people used steam as a natural aid to help healing and relaxation. They believed that steam could prevent, heal and provide relief from various ailments and illnesses. Initially, people visited commercial establishments like spas or those famous vast Roman houses to experience the benefits of steam.
Nowadays, the advent of steam showers has enabled more people to benefit from the therapeutic effects – from the comfort of their own homes. This is also a pointer to the affordability of a steam shower cabin. The use of steam has several health benefits. Read on to gain an insight about the health benefits you could obtain by using a steam shower.
Steam As A Detoxification Agent
Some decades back, lifestyles and diets used to be healthy and beneficial to the body. Earlier generations did not rely on the indiscriminate use of chemicals, pesticides, fertilisers and other kinds of toxins like heavy metals and exhaust fumes. However, the increase in pollution levels and the use of chemicals has complicated matters. A concentrated presence of these in the body could lead to severe illnesses.
Depending on your lifestyle and diet, your body accumulates a number of chemicals and toxins. Nature’s way of getting rid of these from the body comes about via perspiration. Steam showers provide an effective means to induce sweating in the body. In doing so, they help in deep cleansing your skin and ridding the body of the accumulated toxins. There are two kinds of toxins present in the body. These are:-
Endogenous Toxins: These comprise of biological wastes within the body (including fatty deposits and tissue fluid).
Exogenous Toxins: These comprise of the pollutants and chemicals present in the environment.
Perspiring in a steam shower cabin is more beneficial than perspiring during exercise, according to several studies. While exercising, the exertion and strain on the body also affects the kidney and liver. However, when you sit in a steam shower cabin or your own steam room that uses a DIY steam room kit, you do not put any unnecessary strain on your vital organs.
Steam As An Immunity Booster
A steam shower raises the body temperature, in almost the same manner as a fever does. When the body detects a virus its natural reaction is to induce a fever and a state of high temperature. This is because viruses cannot survive at high body temperatures.
When the body detects this increase in temperature a chain reaction starts within the body’s natural defense mechanism to fight against these phantom virus microorganisms.
The higher body temperature leads to an increase in white blood cell and antibody production. The white blood cells defend the body from attacks by infectious diseases and other illnesses caused by other microorganisms like bacteria and viruses, this practice not only fights any illness or virus already present within the body but it also actively trains the body to be better practiced in fighting future illness. Other benefits of steam showers include:
- Decreasing the effects of endotoxins (i.e. toxins released by bacteria)
- Enhancing the activity of interferon (i.e. a protein made by the body for fighting disease-causing microorganisms)
- Increasing the production of enzymes
- Burning a higher number of calories
- Cleansing of the skin’s pores
Results of a Research Studying the Effects of Steam Bath on People Suffering from Ankylosing Spondylitis and Rheumatoid Arthritis
Ankylosing spondylitis is a disease that causes spinal bones to fuse with each other. It also results in inflammations. Estimates suggest that one in every thousand people in the UK suffer from ankylosing spondylitis. Further to this it is estimated 1 in 2 people over 65 have some degree of arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease. It causes inflammation in the joints of the body. It also results in serious damage to the tissues in the body. Estimates suggest that about 1 percent of people in the UK suffer from rheumatoid arthritis. Additionally, more women suffer from this disease as compared to men.
In the research, the sauna brought the patients’ bodies to a state of complete hypothermia. Patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis firstly reported to enjoyed the experience. They mentioned that they felt lesser pain and experienced enhanced levels of movement for a duration after treatment. During the research other effects experienced by the patients during the treatment included:
- Diminished traces of any inflammation
- Loss of weight (between 100 – 400 grams)
- Reduction in blood pressure
While using a sauna, the body reacts to the heat by producing hormones, such as nor adrenaline, adrenaline, cortisol and so forth which all function as an anti-inflammatory (or in simplified terms, they ease the swelling of the joints caused by the illness thus putting the symptoms in regression). This regression of the pain causes the body to experience lower amounts of stress which then leads to the body producing a hormone called endorphins, which is known as the hormone “of joy” and the body’s natural painkiller.
Statistically speaking, over 90% of the people who suffer arthritis after a sauna treatment stated that they had elevated mobility due to loosening of the joints (due to the anti-inflammatory properties of the treatment) and also experienced an ease in the pain which their illness causes.
It is also notable to say that due to the sweating caused by the sauna, people who practice going to the sauna and take medication to cope with their illness experience a cleansing process in which with their sweat – exert the toxic compounds of the medication they take, thus having less adverse effects of it.
Steam As a Skin Reviving And Moisturising Agent
Spending time a steam shower cabin or your own custom steam room can give plenty of respite to your skin. People have used steam showers to improve the tone, moisture and clarity of the skin. Typically, saunas use steam generators to produce water vapours.
In our steam shower units, the fitted 3kW steam generator fills the steam shower cabin with vapors. The user sets the temperature for the cabin based on their personal requirements. Steam helps in opening the pores in your body, thereby releasing the toxins.
The heat of the steam shower increases your metabolism and your pulse rate. It stimulates your cardiovascular system and increases the number of heartbeats per minute. It also expands your blood vessels. This improves the flow of blood throughout your body.
It also helps the skin receive essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals and oxygen. This leads to an improvement in your skin tone and clarity, vouched for by your radiant and youthful skin.
Steam makes the skin brighter and more radiant. However, it has another utility in terms of beauty treatment too. Increasingly, women are using the steam for hair treatment and styling. This device makes their hair frizz and humidity proof. Additionally, it does this quicker than the conventional blow dry and iron.
Steam As A Rejuvenating Agent
As mentioned earlier, a steam shower increases the heat, which results in improved blood circulation throughout the body. The improved flow of blood helps relax the muscles. It also alleviates the tension in the body after a long day at the workplace.
Several physicians recommend using a steam shower to their patients to obtain relief from stiff joints and arthritis. In fact, research has shown that the use of heat therapy with complete body hypothermia can decrease the pain, stiffness and fatigue experienced by people afflicted with rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis.
Some spas and health clubs diffuse aromatherapy oils along with steam. These oils can be very helpful in relaxing the mind. Moreover, research has shown that elderly people can enjoy better quality sleep if they take regular steam baths. In some cases, steam baths have helped cure sleep-related ailments like insomnia.
Steam As A Breath Enhancing Agent
People have used steam to provide relief to people suffering from a number of ailments like asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis and other allergies of the lung. Steam helps in unclogging the airways in the lungs. This results in providing relief from inflammations or congestion in the lungs, thereby enabling people to breathe more easily.
This is why doctors recommend people with respiratory ailments to take regular steam baths. The hot and moist air of the steam shower cabin helps these people to breathe comfortably.
Supplement the Benefits of a Steam Shower with a Healthier Lifestyle
Merely taking a steaming shower is not sufficient when it comes to keeping your mind and body healthy. But the steam produced by the 3kW steam generator can cleanse your pores. However, it cannot function simply all by itself so therefore, use the following measures also, to help lead a healthier life.
- Thinking positive and being optimistic
- Taking adequate rest
- Regular exercise
- Staying outdoors in the sun for some time each day
- Eating healthy food that is fresh and unprocessed
- Avoiding alcohol and smoking
Steam Shower Cabins or Steam Room Kits for Homes
The increased benefits of steam showers has led to many people purchasing a steam shower cabin or building their own with DIY steam room kit. The popularity of these steam room kits has exceeded the popularity enjoyed earlier by wet rooms.
The former are inexpensive and comprise of a simple upgrade to an existing bathroom or shower and replace with a freestanding steam shower cabin. In contrast, the latter is similar to the ones used at expensive spas and health clubs. Their increased cost comes with the benefits of:
- Having higher quality parts that provide greater durability
- Being easy to maintain or repair if something breaks down
- Having dimensions that fit perfectly in your bathrooms
- Having a sleeker and more elegant and luxurious appearance
- Generating and withstanding steam at much higher temperatures giving you greater benefits each time you indulge yourself
In the low-cost home size range, steam shower cabins and steam room kits for one and two persons are easily available. These are ideal if you have a small family or if you have a limited budget