Hydrating & Rehydrating for the Sauna

Water is the source of life for all living beings. For us humans, water plays an important role in regulating our bodies. When we are properly hydrated, our internal organs work efficiently to keep everything in balance.

The absence of enough water in our body is called dehydration. Replenishing the water is known as ‘rehydration’ which helps in bringing the body back into balance. How are these things related to your sauna sessions? Well, as the sauna is an enclosed heated space, the heat can seriously reduce the water level in your body.

As one of the motives of going to the sauna is to sweat, it is also important to replenish the water that has been lost during sweating. Water also helps to bring down the internal temperature of your body that has been raised due to the sauna.

Some Tips to Help you Stay Hydrated

It is recommended to drink a lot of water before and after the sauna sessions to keep yourself hydrated. However, people often get confused about the right way to hydrate themselves for the sauna, we have put together some handy tips.

Make sure to drink water two hours before you hit the sauna

Drink the water slowly and 1-2 liters of water is advised. If desired, you can also add a pinch of Himalayan pink salt to your water to help your body keep your electrolytes in balance. Drinking too much water can be bad for you as well as it dilutes the electrolytes in your body by overproducing urine. 

These are critical to ensure the proper functioning of the electrical signals in your muscles and brain.  People have actually died from drinking too much water (it’s called water intoxication) – but don’t worry, you have to drink a huge amount of water in a short amount of time for this to happen.

Avoid alcohol or caffeinated drinks on the day of your sauna

You should also avoid drinking coffee and alcohol after the sauna session is done.  Alcohol contributes to dehydration and is counter-productive to a sauna session.

Stay Hydrated After the Sauna Session

Just like it is important to drink water before going to the sauna, it is equally important to hydrate yourself after the session is over. Just like you drank the water slowly before going to the sauna, you need to repeat the same process after the session is over. Room temperature water is recommended, however, I personally prefer cold water.

Avoid drinking sugary drinks like fruit juices, soft drinks, or flavored water, as they can get your body into a sugar rush.

Instead of having sugary drinks, you can drink an electrolyte-based drink which will help in replenishing the important minerals needed by your body.

Pair Your Drinks with a Meal

The best way to rehydrate yourself is to pair your drinks with a meal. After you are done with your sauna session, let your body cool down for an hour or so, which will give you time to stop sweating. You can then get yourself a filling meal that consists of hydrating vegetables. This can be a salad bowl containing sprouts, fresh leafy vegetables, cucumbers, water-heavy fruits like watermelon or oranges.

A good meal will always help you in hydrating your body. Again, adding a pinch of Himalayan pink salt with your meal will help you in retaining the water.

Using a soaked towel

Do you have a tendency to get dry skin after the sauna sessions? Excessive sweating could be a reason behind it. A good way to solve the problem is to get a soaked towel and place it on your face and neck after the sauna session is over. You can even add a bit of your favorite essential oil to the towel to make it smell better. Find a calm spot and relax while the water from the soaked towel helps to rehydrate your skin.

These are a few of the tips that will help you in rehydrating your body after sauna sessions. You should always remember to drink eight to ten glasses of water daily, even when you’re not going to the sauna.

Also, avoid drinking water inside the sauna as it can be counterproductive for the heat to work on your body. You can also try infrared sauna technology if you find the traditional sauna too dehydrating for your body.

1 Comment
  1. Mark, thank you for providing this useful info! Before and after sauna sessions, it is critical to adequately hydrate yourself. I believe that consuming a substantial amount of liquids within two to three hours of sauna bathing will balance out the heat-stress reaction to the kidneys.

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