Skip links

Vibrant health means you can live life to the fullest. Empower yourself with the steps I used to free my life of chronic disease and medications.

Reader Interactions


  1. I’ve been struggling with an infection and after research found that inducing a fever would. I’ve seen saunas where they are like tents and I live in a small home but this perfect. I’m going to have to save up.

    • These saunas are awesome for all types of infections, I’m hoping mine will help clear up my gut infection along with my herbal protocol. I think Eileen is going to start manufacturing small pop-up tents to use with the sauna – like the ones you’ve seen – but you don’t have to do that. A shower stall or small bathroom will work perfectly. I hope you feel better soon!

  2. Hi, Lauren.

    I know that near infrared sauna is probably not recommended for pregnant women but what about those that are nursing? Do you know if the infrared would induce a detox that would taint breast milk?

    • My friend just had a baby and was told NOT to use the sauna while nursing. She’s missing her detox regiment very much!!!

      Incidentally, saunas are safe for children and our 8, 14, and 17 year olds do them every other day or so. They listen to an audio drama which typically lasts 30 minutes. Our other two children don’t like the extreme heat though (which is unfortunate because we live in the desert and it feels like a sauna outside all summer long 🙂

      We’ve had a lot of good benefit from using our sauna but we got it while in the middle of GAPS so we are not entirely sure what all contributed to our well-being.

      • Actually according to a study, radiation from sauna therapy enhances lactation. I doubt if they would be putting lactating mothers in a sauna if it was harmful.

        Dr. Wilson recommends sauna therapy for everyone except: “Pregnant women and children under five should avoid near infrared lamp saunas. The infrared energy is a little hard on the developing fetus. Young children do not sweat as well, and can easily become dehydrated. For these reasons, I would avoid lamp sauna therapy with babies and children under 5 in most circumstances.”

        The wonderful thing about the SaunaFix is the ambient air temperature isn’t as hot so it is much easier for heat intolerant people to use.

  3. Thanks for the great article! I too have been in the nutritional rebalancing protocol for about a year and a half or so…I just wanted to let you know you can also create your own sauna super easy at the hardware store! You just buy 3 infrared bulbs ($10 each) (or however many bulbs you want). Then you buy the metal bulb holders with the protective wires that go across the bulb and extension cord connected ($5-$10 each). Then you just plug it in…I attached mine to a long piece of wood ($5) and the entire contraption cost me around $65. I just wanted to let people know in case they are on a budget as a lot of the saunas can be very expensive.

      • After some reading, it appears that a NEAR infrared bulb is a red heat lamp as opposed to a white heat lamp. Then I found this on Dr. Wilson’s page of free sauna plans:

        Three or four 250-watt, reddish “heat bulbs”. These are sold at many hardware stores and cost about $6-15 US dollars each.
        Standard brands of these lamps include Philips, General Electric, Sylvania, Havel-Sli, Feat and others. I prefer ones with brass screw bases, which most of them have.
        Westinghouse lamps are somewhat acceptable. At the time of this update (2013) they may be coating their lamps with Teflon, which reduces the danger of breakage, but the lamps could outgas somewhat when heated. Do not use clear heat lamps as their spectrum is not correct,

      • Just call the manufacture’s phone number, get the technical support department, and ask the engineer what wavelength their bulb emits. Around 800 mm (nanometers) is perfect.

  4. I researched near infrared saunas daily, for a month, as a way to expedite my healing from an acute illness, and essentially enhance my overall healthcare regime. My issue was space and privacy to sauna, in the nude and at my convenience, and cost for a quality sauna or near infrared light. Finally, I stopped over thinking the situation, and went simple. I made my own portable near infrared sauna for around $250 from a 3X3 mylar reflective grow room, a 4-bulb brooder light (online farm supplier that carries bulbs too), eight high quality red reflective heat bulbs (always like to have extra bulbs for back up), and a nice piece of cedar to line the floor. It is fully portable, attractve inside or out on the porch, easy to clean and best of all, I made it myselfand it works amazingly well! I sweat like I do in the traditional Swedish spas at the gym, but I have complete control of ventilation and humidity. I have it set up in a spare room corner. All components are reuseable in my home for years to come. In the winter, I will be getting a larger grow room so I have more room to stretch and practice hot yoga. Beautiful!

  5. This is another interesting article and I truly appreciate the research you pursue and share with your readers. My comment is off the subject of near infrared saunas but directed to the above suggestion from Eileen that one could build “a simple 4′ x 4′ x 5′ frame out of 1″ Sch 40 PVC… and cover with a quilt.” All though you may have research on your blog about plastic’s ill effects on physical and behavioral well being, I haven’t come across it yet, nor with with the many other health bloggers who also provide helpful information. I have researched plastic, both in and out of college, and discovered it to be extremely harmful in any way, shape or form; some plastics are more harmful or more apt to leech their poisons (such as cadmium, lead and mercury, to name just a few!) than others but there is NO SUCH THING as safe plastic. BPA-free does not make it safe if other types of plastics are used. And sadly, there isn’t even such a thing as “organic food” if the grower is using plastic pipe, in any form, for irrigation and/or using plastic ground cover, and packaging in plastic containers! The sources of exposure just go on and on and it angers and frustrates me so much, not just for me and my loved ones but for the harm caused to all, especially babies and children (along with all the other harmful things in our lives.) Plastic poisoning is a huge issue that boggles the mind of how much our world is saturated in it–so much so that it is impossible to get away from it entirely (I tried) but there is much one can do to reduce exposure, such as thinking through any suggestion to use plastic, and opt to use other means when possible, like the option above of using wooden 2x2s for making the lamp frame. Sorry, it is so hard for me to limit myself when the subject comes up. What I am trying to say is, I hope you and many, many others who write and speak about ways to improve health using evidence based reports would research plastic and rethink the suggestions to use it, such as the above suggestion to use PVC pipe to build a frame and not thinking through that plastic under heat leeches even more toxins (and then be in an enclosed area!!) It may be a seemly small thing, but for those who are aware of plastics harmful effects, it’s not at all. The more one becomes educated and observant to their world, the more one can reduce exposure. Thanks again for your articles–they are very helpful and well done

  6. Lauren, what brand of bulbs do you recommend? I’ve been reading that some of them are coated with Teflon, which would obviously not be good. Dr. Wilson’s site says to look for 250 watt near infrared bulbs, ideally with brass screw bases and no Teflon.

    What type did you use and where can one buy them?

  7. Hi Lauren,

    Great article. I noticed that you wrote that you “truly believe this is the best option for a near infrared sauna,” in regards to Eileen’s product. Yet, you acknowledge having not tried other products. With 10+ years of experience in personal use as well as design/build, I can say that stand-alone units in a shower or bathroom can’t compare to a properly designed cabin. Near infrared projects it’s heat as a spotlight, which limits the practical design options for a cabin so that they heat up properly, yet provide enough distance from the bulbs to be comfortable. It’s a trick balance and most showers and/or small closets don’t have the right dimensions for a 1000 watt heater.

    I understand that not everyone has the space or the budget for a cabin, but for those who do, there are greater health benefits to be had. In particular, raising core temperatures is much more effective in an enclosed cabin that heats up to about 130F. Even though the heat penetrates the body, without an increased ambient temperature, raising core temps is almost impossible.

    Anyway, I do appreciate your piece on near infrared. I just wanted to add that there are more effective options out there.

    Thank you,

    Michael Goldstein

  8. Hi Lauren

    Just wondering how you have been getting on with the Hair Mineral Analysis and Nutritional Balancing. I’m about to embark on the same program. I’m especially interested in how you have got on with the fact that all sugars and most fruit are off the menu given your past realization that you needed to ‘eat for heat’ and guard against going too low carb.

    Thanks for your very useful blog!

  9. Hi, I’m also searching for information on using a far infrared sauna regularly while breastfeeding. I’m finding mixed information on the release of toxins into breastmilk. Hoping someone can give me more information.

    Thanks in advance.

  10. HEY i had a couple of questions, have you ever looked into dr. pompas cellular detox ? why would u pursue mineral re balancing versus cellular detox ? just curious ? i just got my hair test and am saving up for the sauna, but now am contemplating doing dr pompas instead

  11. Can you recommend a more professional near infrared sauna product than one that requires it be hung in a bathroom? Are any high end wood sauna cabinet builders support near infrared instead of far infrared?

  12. Hi Lauren,

    I am a chemistry PhD candidate, and I love your site, but I am confused about your discussion of the difference between near IR and far IR radiation. Near IR is actually higher in energy than far IR, but you have stated that far IR produces a higher level of EMFs than near IR. In fact, far IR EMF is defined as radiation with wavelength between ~15-300 micrometers, while near IR light is radiation with 0.7-1.5 micrometers. Based on the equation E=hc/l (where E is energy, h is Planck’s constant, c is the speed of light, and l is the wavelength of light), and since h and c are both constants, a photon with a higher wavelength implies it has lower energy, meaning far IR light, which has a higher wavelength, is lower energy than near IR (source: So a near IR sauna should theoretically expose you to more dangerous EMF radiation. This is analogous to visible radiation versus UV radiation. Visible radiation (the light you can see) falls in the range of about 400-700 nm in wavelength, and UV is less than 400 nm. UV photons are thus much higher in energy, which is why it can burn your skin, while visible light usually cannot. All this being said, even if each photon of a near IR sauna is higher in energy, if there are fewer photons emitted overall, then you may be exposing yourself to less radiation. So the intensity of light emitted in a near IR sauna would have to be much lower than that of a far IR sauna Is that what you mean when you say that far IR saunas expose you to a high level of EMF?

    • Concerning EMF, they are talking about the low frequency, 60 Hz magnetic field generated by house current making a big current loop in the far-ir plate. The near IR bulbs have such a tiny filament that they generate almost no EMF at more than a few inches distance.

  13. To state that all far infrared is always high emf is false. There is a company called Clearlight that innovated low EMF technology for far infrared sauna heaters. about 8 years ago. On their website they show the report as it was independently tested. . Also now there are otger sauna companirs that also have no to low emf . And yes levels of emf are still high in many so in that regard if the company is not mentioning emf it would be high as you stated.

    I can give you a link to a very good Gauss meter. Lutron gauss meter. You can see for yourself the levels of EMF using this. They are inexpensive and you can find it on Amazon.

    • Caroline I am surprised by this article as well and wanted to ask her if she has noticed emf levels in today’s far saunas?

      I’ve been researching this and find todays far infrareds to be extremely low to no emf in one I’ve found. For ex. High tech health is noted as outstanding and dr. Cassars earthshift products website carries one with no emf.

      If that’s the only health reason ;Im gathering it is?) to go with near than really it’s not an issue at all.
      I hope she looks into this and shares more.

    • Could you provide the link to the tool to test Caroline (please and thanks!)? I use a far infrared sauna and a little concerned now of negative impacts using it. I have to look for my manual but I know it’s the saunatec IG-580 hemlock AC120V… Fingers crossed.

  14. I’m interested to know what you think of the electrical portable infrared heaters that look like mini fireplaces. (Duraflame 8511 Black Infrared Electric Fireplace Stove with Remote Control – DFI-8511-01 on Amazon for example). Do you know if this is near or far infrared? I’m wondering if this would be a different way to go, instead of the bulbs. Thank you.

  15. This article seems to be very dated. Although near IR may have been better 10 years ago, new technology in FAR infrared heating elements allow them to operate at 0 – 2.50 EMF’s.

    I believe Clearlight has a system they have been using which produces low EMF’s. I just got back from a seminar where Greenwave Saunas introduced the latest in a zero EMF rated sauna by molding copper strips on the back of the heating elements. Not sure how it works, however they had one there which I tested which came at Zero EMF’s. Not sure who else is carrying these now, but those are at the top of my list as soon as I can afford it.

  16. Sorry, I meant – I believe Coastal Saunas is the online store. I also forgot to mention that I had a colleague who ended up purchasing one of the Greenwave Saunas. She installed 2 fixtures on the upper front walls and simply screwed in 2 infrared bulbs. She drilled 2 small holes in the top where she ran the outlet cords.

    It worked great and she only spent $30 on the upgrade to have the best of both worlds. I haven’t personally seen it, but when I get mine I am going to give it a shot.

    – Dr Brooke

  17. This is so fascinating! With all our cold weather, I just watched a news report on the benefits of “snow baths” or dousing yourself in cold water before or after your time in the sauna! Just curious if you came across this idea in any of your research?

  18. One can download an app to test for emfs for free. This is how I tested my fir sauna bag, which also has low emfs. Look for a gauss or tesla meter. I also have a single heat lamp ( going to double up soon) and a green light on a homemade stand to sunbathe with on my bed or in my bathtub while bathing 🙂 I have been making my own homemade mineral supplements ( adaptation from wind in the roses website) and herbal liver/adaptogen blend, plus mushroom blend, bee pollen, and colostrum daily. I am trying to improve metabolism and regrow my thyroid as it was radiated when I was a teen. I have gone down in arm our thyroid dosage and have some thyroid function so fingers crossed!! I love my sauna bag and my lights both! Color therapy w lights feels good too and adds another layer to the healing spectrum in my oppinion 🙂

  19. If space is an issue as you mention in your article, then a portable infrared sauna could be an option. My friend has one that I have used in the past and it was great. I looks kind of like an old fashioned Turkish bath with your head sticking out of the top. It worked really well to induce a good sweat. It can be set up pretty much anywhere in minutes, and stored when not in use.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Lauren Geertsen, NTP

I’m an author, entrepreneur, and nutritional therapy practitioner (NTP). I began this website at 19, to share the steps that freed my life of chronic disease and medication. Now, Empowered Sustenance has reached 30 million readers with healthy recipes and holistic resources.

Lauren’s Books

Get simple steps fordelivered weekly

(plus exclusive coupons and other subscriber-only resources!)

No thanks, I don’t want to sign up.