Of course, there’s a lot of science behind why we sweat and the benefits of it. “The function of sweating is to eliminate waste products [from the body], but minimally compared to the liver and kidneys,” Lyall Gorenstein, surgical director at Columbia University Hyperhidrosis Center, previously told Allure. “Sweating [also] allows you to cool yourself as the body heats, but you have sweat glands all over your body so even if you’re not sweating in your underarms, you’re not ever going to overheat,” he added.
Personally, I find a good sweat fest helpful after a night of sipping a whole bottle of wine on my couch, or if I’m feeling sluggish from eating certain foods, but according to Pariser, what I ingest isn’t coming out of my system through sweat. “If someone wants to eliminate toxins from the body it’s far more effective to drinks tons of water and flush it out through the kidneys than it is to sweat,” Pariser adds.
Before diving in, keep in mind that Higher Dose highly recommends consulting your doctor before using the blanket if you’re pregnant, nursing, have any heart conditions or illnesses, and if you have body implants. Dr. Pariser also warns against it if you have any circulatory conditions. Although it’s not FDA-approved, Higher Dose claims in the product description that this blanket “increases the body’s thermal energy and promotes a temporary increase in blood flow – so you sweat like you’re working out, without working out.” Pariser says it’s not the sweat itself that increases your blood flow, it’s the body heating up.
“The dilation of blood vessels in the skin which occurs during exercise and sauna does promote an increase in blood flow, but that doesn’t affect toxin elimination,” says Pariser. “Increased blood flow doesn’t have many benefits for a healthy person who doesn’t have any circulatory disorder,” he adds. However, as mentioned, Pariser says that a sauna blanket session in tandem with exercising can put the body into a more meditative state. And with gyms shut down for months, I wanted something to complement my home workouts and I found this to be a nice wind-down after exercising or an outdoor run.
Setting Up The Sauna Blanket
The setup was very straight forward. It comes folded up in a large box, and once unpacked, you just plug the power and temperature controller into the port on the bottom of the blanket. The instructions advise wearing clothes when inside as a protective layer between you and the heat.