Sauna Vs Cardio: Which Is More Suited For Weight Loss?

Sauna baths are only beneficial in moderation, relying on them to lose weight is not recommended.

Ishaan Arora
Written by: Ishaan AroraUpdated at: Dec 13, 2022 17:51 IST
Sauna Vs Cardio: Which Is More Suited For Weight Loss?

Sauna Vs Cardio: Here's Everything You Need To Know 

During the festive season, you might have indulged in sugary foods, sedentary behaviour, and overeating. Many of these foods are high in oils and unhealthy fats, that could have caused your body to absorb a large number of harmful toxins. As the new year approaches, many of us start thinking about getting back in shape and look for hacks to help us detoxify our bodies and lose that extra pound. However, if you're tired of running on a treadmill, you can speed up your metabolism by locking yourself in the sauna. But does sauna really help in losing weight?AAnd is it superior to cardio? Here's everything you need to know.

What is a Sauna Bath?

Sauna bathing, according to Medical News Today, uses dry heat at a high temperature (typically 185°F/80°C to 100°C), causing a burst of sweat and a rapid pulse rate within minutes. Sauna sessions can last anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes.


In addition to being one of the easiest ways to burn calories, saunas do have some health benefits including:

  1. 1) Improves heart health and lowers blood pressure
  2. 2) Reduces muscle pain, improves joint mobility, and alleviates arthritis pain
  3. 3) Spending time in a sauna can also improve your skin quality
  4. 4) Reduces risk of fatal cardiovascular-related diseases
  5. 5) Improves circulation and promotes relaxation

Sauna Vs Cardio

Saunas, like cardio, can increase blood flow and core body temperature, but they have little effect on fat loss and muscle gain. You lose weight after using a sauna because of excessive sweating. However, consistent cardio not only helps with weight loss but also helps build stamina, whereas the sauna only causes water loss.

Also Read: 7 Fun Ways To Get 30 Minutes Of Physical Activity Every Day

Is Sauna Good For Weight Loss?

The weight loss that occurs after a sauna session is primarily water weight, which is flushed out of the body as a result of excessive sweating. Because sweating causes dehydration, saunas are not recommended in the summer. Moreover, the water loss is not sustainable because once you start eating and drinking again, you return to your original weight.

Which Is Better: Sauna or Cardio?

The decision between sauna and cardio should be based on your goals and fitness level. If you want to get shredded or lose weight quickly to look Instagram-worthy, you can incorporate a sauna into your overall regimen. However, if you want to gain muscle while losing fat, cardio is the way to go. The two are not really interchangeable when it comes to benefits. 

Pro Tip

You can alternate between the two, but you can't rely on the sauna for weight loss because it causes water loss, which isn't ideal.

Also Read: Beginners Guide To Cardio: Benefits & The Form That's Best For You

Bottom Line

If you regularly do cardio, taking a day off and going to the sauna once a week will not only help your body recover but will also reduce your risk of injury.

When it comes to weight loss, cardio is the way to go because the weight loss that occurs after a sauna session is temporary. Furthermore, no one can lose weight in 20 minutes; fat loss is a long-term process that is influenced by three factors: diet, nutrition, and sleep.

 Image Credit: Freepik