Water balance after sauna visit


Using a sauna is not only relaxing and restful, but also a specific challenge for the body that requires a proper approach, especially in terms of hydration. As we warm up, our body intensively loses water, making proper hydration crucial to our health and well-being. In this article, we will discuss why this happens, how to properly hydrate the body and what drinks to choose when visiting the sauna.

Introduction to the physiology of dehydration during sauna use

When using a sauna, the body responds to high temperatures by sweating, which is a natural thermoregulation mechanism. Sweating leads to the loss of fluids and electrolytes, which can lead to dehydration if not properly compensated. Dehydration not only compromises the effectiveness of the recovery process after the sauna, but can also lead to negative health effects, such as dizziness, weakness or trouble concentrating. That’s why it’s so important to remember to properly hydrate your body when using the sauna.

Hydration and the Sauna: A Guide to Proper Water Consumption and Safe Drinks When Using the Sauna

How to properly hydrate your body before, during and after sauna

Hydration before the sauna is key. It is best to start drinking water a few hours before your visit so that your body is properly hydrated. Do not drink a lot of water right before using the sauna, as this can lead to uncomfortable feelings during the session.

Although everyone’s hydration level is different, try to drink a total of about 1.5 liters of water before, during and after your sauna visit whenever you feel like it.

When using a sauna, hydration should be moderate. A large amount of water can stress the body and slow down the sweating process, which is crucial for sauna use.

After a sauna visit, it is essential to replenish lost fluids. Remember that water is not the only ingredient we lose when we sweat – along with it we also lose electrolytes, which are essential for the body to function properly. That’s why after the sauna you should reach for isotonic drinks, which help replenish both water and electrolytes.

Following these rules will help keep your body hydrated and allow you to reap the full benefits of your sauna visit.

If you have any health problems, whether kidney disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, or other conditions that may affect your ability to regulate temperature and hydration, always consult your doctor before planning a sauna visit. Your doctor can advise you on whether sauna use is safe for your condition and what precautions to take, especially in terms of proper hydration. Remember that taking care of your health is paramount, so always follow your doctor’s advice and use the sauna with caution.

The best drinks to consume while using the sauna

When we talk about hydration during the sauna, it is important to choose beverages that not only replenish lost fluids, but also provide needed electrolytes. Water is, of course, the basis – reliable and always available. But let’s not forget about other good options.

Isotonic drinks are an excellent choice, as they not only hydrate, but also replenish lost electrolytes. Other good options include natural fruit juices, which contain natural sugars and vitamins, as well as herbal teas, which can have additional health benefits, such as a relaxing effect.

You can drink carbonated mineral water or add a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of honey to plain water. This will give you a good electrolyte-boosting drink.

Remember, however, that every body is different and may react differently to different drinks. Therefore, you should always listen to your body and choose the drinks that make you feel best.

Beverages to avoid when using the sauna

When using a sauna, certain drinks can lead to dehydration or other negative health effects. The most important drink to avoid is alcohol. Alcohol has a diuretic effect, which means it can accelerate fluid loss, leading to dehydration. In addition, alcohol can disrupt the body’s thermoregulation, which is especially dangerous in the hot environment of a sauna.

Another drink to avoid is caffeinated beverages, such as coffee and some teas and energizers. Caffeine, like alcohol, has a diuretic effect and can contribute to dehydration.

Also avoid drinks with high sugar content. While they can provide a quick boost of energy, they can also lead to rapid fluctuations in blood sugar levels, which can be unhealthy, especially in the stressful environment of a sauna.

Frequently asked questions about hydration when using a sauna

How much water is lost in a sauna?

A visit to a classic Finnish sauna causes intense sweating with the secretion of about 20-30 grams of sweat per minute, of which about 10 grams are evaporated. This means that in 15 minutes spent in the sauna you can lose up to half a liter of water!

What kind of water to drink - cold or hot?

It depends on individual preference. However, keep in mind that water that is too cold can be a shock to the body after a hot sauna. Warm water is easier for the body to absorb and can help maintain thermal balance.

What are the best drinks after the sauna?

Isotonic drinks are an excellent choice after the sauna, as they replenish both water and electrolytes. Natural fruit juices and herbal teas are other good options.

Can I drink water directly in the sauna?

Yes, but in moderation. Remember that drinking a lot of water can strain the body and slow down the sweating process.

Rules for safe sauna use

Be sure to hydrate properly before, during and after your sauna visit by choosing healthy drinks and avoiding those that can lead to dehydration. If you have any health problems, always consult your doctor before your scheduled visit. Using a sauna is not only relaxing, but also a challenge for the body that requires the right approach – by ensuring that you are properly hydrated, you can reap the full benefits of your sauna visit and ensure a safe and rewarding experience.

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Since 2011 I have had my own business selling sauna building materials, sauna cookers and sauna accessories. I know all about building a quality sauna!