While in most cases candida is relatively harmless, in some cases it can lead to life-threatening outcomes. Remember to always consult your physician if you’ve got a candida infection of any kind, whether unproblematic or not.
Scientific evidence of infrared saunas as a treatment for candida is yet to be researched. Like many queries about infrared saunas as specific treatments, the reality of the situation is that the evidence, research, funding, and overall interest isn't quite there to support it.
Our mission is to have much of this research conducted and peer-reviewed so that we can deliver you the facts when they are discovered. For now, as there is no answer on if far infrared saunas are good for candida or not, there are, however, many links that can be found between the biochemical effects infrared saunas have on the body and how these could possibly be a plausible intermediary for candida infections.
What Is Candida?
Candida is a type of fungal infection with up to 200 different species, 20 of which can be present in the human body. Normally that candida doesn’t cause any problems but if there’s an overgrowth then a health condition called candidiasis can result.
The mouth, skin, digestive system, and genitals in both sexes are the most frequent places candidiasis takes hold. In different places of the body, candidiasis causes different symptoms. For instance, in the mouth, the condition commonly causes white plaque on the tongue and may require a change in diet to amend.
If you’re young or older age, immunocompromised, have existing health conditions, or have extensively used prescription medication like antibiotics, your risk of getting candidiasis goes up and your hygiene practices also matter.
As always, prevention is the best strategy to avoid candidiasis.
If present, the condition is usually treated with antifungal prescription medicine.
In worse cases, “invasive candidiasis” can develop, which can be life-threatening and you may end up in an intensive care unit.
Does Infrared Sauna Help With Candida?
Invaders of the human body don’t like high temperatures. Treating these invaders (cells and organisms) that threaten the human body with heat has become more popular in recent decades.
A 2016 study conducting lab research found different types of candida that were exposed to higher temperatures 43°C which "eradicated most of the pathogen colonies".
The higher the temperatures move towards 42-50°C, the more candida is inhibited. Inducing an artificial fever by raising your core temperature seems to create an environment in that the candida fungus can no longer thrive, thus causing the fungus to stop spreading.
Clearlight Infrared® Saunas do exactly that. Far infrared wavelengths directly heat your core when sitting in a Clearlight Infrared® Sauna and have been shown to increase your body temperature up to 38.5°C.
While the temperatures shown to eradicate the candida fungus in the study are much higher than the recorded temperatures shown in our Clearlight Infrared® Sauna studies, a core temperature of 38.5°C is as high as one may get in a mild fever.
It's the biochemical pathways between heating and inhibiting candida overgrowth that is very plausible, however, it is yet to be proven.
Will An Infrared Sauna Kill Candida?
Infrared saunas can increase the effectiveness of some parts of your immune system. While there are many different types of white blood cells with different functions, many counters potentially damage microorganisms like bacteria, viruses, and fungi. There are one type of white blood cell "lymphocytes", which have been demonstrated to affect candida.
If anything was going to "kill" candida it would be our white blood cells. Evidence suggests that the use of a sauna increases the number of white blood cells in the human body.
A mere 15-minute session showed immune system improvements if your core body temperature increases by 1.2°C.
Also, different types of blood cells such as “lymphocytes” (related to your lymphatic system) and neutrophils and basophils increased in many participants.
Theoretically, infrared saunas could be linked to "kill" candida by being shown to increase the white blood cell count in your body, and improve the functioning of your immune system.
Is Infrared Sauna Bad For You If You Have Candida?
Some claim that infrared saunas shouldn’t be used against candida. A frequently made argument is that saunas are humid places and humidity makes candida outbreaks more likely.
What isn't valid about this argument is that spending time in a sauna barely affects the water content of any internal tissues of your body. Different types of saunas heat up the air around you to a different extent such as a traditional sauna versus an infrared sauna.
Even though there might be high humidity, it won’t translate to higher humidity or water content in the body, so even though candida loves wetness as a fungus, the humidity of a sauna will not affect the candida because it’s almost always located inside the body.
Candida overgrowth on the skin would be an exception.
In the case of candida overgrowth or candidiasis, there’s no direct evidence that an infrared sauna does help with candida. Having said that, existing foundational research such as that of saunas and the immune system and lab research on candida and heating is very promising.
We hope that in the coming years, more research will be carried out on the candida sauna connection, specifically what is called a “randomised controlled trial” (RCT). An RCT, where both participants and researchers who measure the final outcomes don’t know whether they receive an intervention or control therapy, would give more insight into the (far) infrared sauna candida link.
If you're interested in an infrared sauna cabin for home, click here to view our range of full-spectrum saunas, far-infrared saunas, and outdoor saunas.