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    steam - the green escape

    Steam - Health & Wellness Benefits

    For many, the days of hard physical labor are long gone and it's tough to find time to relax. Today, we're looking for healthy escapes from all the stress in our lives. Many careers and lifestyles are products of a fast-paced, technological world. Perhaps our jobs aren't physically demanding, but we really have to stay on our toes mentally. and we're always looking for something to give as that edge. Sometimes a little personal pampering nudges us a little closer to our goals.

    A steam bath provides a private retreat - a mini-vacation in your own home.

    Health Benefits of Steam Bathing

    Relieves Stress

    Medical studies clearly show stress in our daily lives affects our health. In fact, the vast majority of disease is stree-related. Steam bathing provides a quite space without distractions. The gentle heat and humidity soothes away stress, helping you relax both physically and mentally while creating a calming environment where you can enjoy personal indulgence.

    Relaxes Muscles and Soothes Aches and Pains in Muscles and Joints

    Under high heat, the body releases endorphines - the body's naturally produced pain relieving chemical. Endorphins can have a mild and enjoyable tranquilizing effect and the ability to quell the pain of arthritis and muscle soreness from an intense physcial workout.

    Body temperature rises from the heat, causing blood vessels to dilate and circulation to increase. The increased blood flow accelerates the body's natural healing process - soothing aches and pains and speeding up the healing of cuts and bruises.

    A steam bath after sporting activities relaxes muscles by reducing muscle tension and eliminating lactic acid and other toxins.

    Flushes Toxins

    With today's lifestyles, many of us don't actively sweat on a daily basis. Sweating has multiple health benefits. When the body is exposed to the heat of a steam bath, the core body temperature begins to rise. The blood vessels dilate, causing increased blood flow. As heat from the blood moves toward the skin surface and core body temperature rises, the body's nervous system sends signals to the millions of sweat glands. As the sweat glands are stimulated, they produce sweat. Sweat production is primarily for cooling the body, and is composed of 99% water - but deep sweating in a steam bath can help reduce levels of lead, copper, zinc, nickel, mercury and chemicals - all toxins commonly picked up from our environment. Eliminating toxins promotes good health.

    Cleanses Skin - Deep Cleans and Moisturizes

    Steam bathing is one of the oldest beauty and health treatments for the skin. When deep sweating occurs, the skin is cleansed and dead skin cells are replaced, keeping your skin in good working condition. Sweat rinses bacteria out of the epidermal layer and sweat ducts. Cleansing of the pores improves the capillary circulation and gives the skin a soft, beautiful appearance. Dr. Ben H. Douglas, a professor at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and author of "Ageless: Living Younger Longer", states "Sweating is a way of energizing the skin almost the way exercising a muscle energizes it". He goes on to explain, when you sweat, the rush of fluid to the skin "bathes skin cells with a liquid rich in nutrients", which "fills in the spaces arount the cells" and even plumps up tiny wrinkles. He says the nutrients and minerals in sweat "are essential to maintaining the collagen structure of the skin ".

    Thus, bathing your skin in sweat on a regular basis staves off the collagen breakdown that results in wrinkles and sags. By continually flushing body waste through the individual cells, one eventually brings back vitality, tone and a healthy glow to the skin. Steam bathing is not a cure for acne or other skin conditions, but often helps due to the deep cleanising it provides from a deep sweat, cleaning the pores from the inside out.

    Relieves Nasal, Sinus and Chest Congestion & Fights Illness

    Steam can relieve sinus congestion from colds or allergies, especially when eucalyptus oil is added to the steam vapor. Breathing in the steam vapor helps clear up uncomfortable congestion by opening up nasal passageways, sinus cavities and bronchial tubes, providing relief and making it easier to breath.

    Regular steam bathing significantly reduces the incidence of colds and influenza. As the body is exposed to the heat and moist steam, it produces white blood cells more rapidly, which in turn helps kill viruses and fight illness.

    Induces a Deeper Sleep

    Research shows a deeper sleep can result from steam bathing. In addition to the release of endorphins when the body temperature is raised in the late evening, it will fall at bedtime, facilitating sleep. Steam bathers around the world enjoy the deep sleep they experience after steam bathing.

    Feels Good

    Steam not only feels good, it's good for you. Whether it's the physiological changes that occur in the warmth of a steam bath, or if it's simply the time spent in a calm, relaxing retreat, all steam bathers agree - it feels terrific! As we go through our daily stressful lives, steam provides a healthy escape - a place where we can relax and restore body and soul.

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