Can I go to the sauna as a cancer patient?
As a cancer patient, you may wonder whether you are allowed to go to the sauna at all. Some are afraid that in addition to the metabolism, the growth of tumors will be stimulated. Various people advise against saunas and urge caution. However, to date there is no evidence that saunas are harmful for tumor diseases. Quite the contrary. It can even bring health benefits. How so? What precautions should be taken? And what else can you do to prevent cancer?
Fortunately, cancer does not automatically mean a death sentence these days. In the case of prostate and thyroid diseases, for example, the prognosis is quite good. Of course, cancers also progress at different rates. Acute leukemia cannot be compared with breast cancer. With all cancers, the earlier they are detected, the better they can be treated.
The sauna is not directly suitable as a therapy for cancer. However, it can be a good supplement if you are in good general physical condition. After all, taking a sauna is a popular non-invasive way to feel better. For many, it means a higher quality of life. It is understandable that people do not want to do without it when a tumor has been diagnosed.
The cardiovascular system gets going and the metabolism is stimulated. Some cancer patients (or their relatives) are afraid that in addition to the metabolism, tumor growth is also stimulated. However, there is no evidence for this thesis. However, there is evidence that heat is beneficial to health. When taking a sauna, however, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Precautions to take when using the sauna
If you have been diagnosed with cancer, you should …
- Discuss with the oncologist treating you whether it is possible to visit the sauna.
- Only stay in the sauna cabin as long as it is good for you.
- It is better to start with a less hot form of sauna such as a steam bath or bio-sauna.
- Avoid high temperatures if lymphedema (fluid accumulation in the tissue) occurs.
- Only return to the sauna when your circulation has normalized.
- Only sauna with healthy skin (at the earliest two to three weeks after radiation therapy).
- Allow sufficient time to pass after an operation.
- Only go to the sauna when your immune system is functioning well.
If you are still weakened from chemotherapy, it is better to wait a little longer. Give your body the time it needs to recover from the exertions.
Sweating in the fight against cancer
Did you know that cancer cells do not like oxygen? Therefore, it is good to provide the body with as much oxygen as possible. In plain language, this means plenty of exercise in the fresh air. Regular visits to the sauna also ensure better blood circulation to all organs. Thus the body cells are optimally supplied with oxygen. This procedure is especially recommended for chronic inflammations.
In addition to the oxygen supply, taking a sauna has another positive effect. During a stay in the sauna chamber, our body temperature increases. This is called artificial fever or hyperthermia. The problem is that certain cancer cells hide from the immune system. Artificial fever changes their surface. Thus, the immune system recognizes them and can render them harmless.
Studies were conducted with cancer patients who had already developed metastases. In some patients, the tumor could be brought under control by heat treatment. It is possible that chemotherapy may respond better with artificially induced fever. This is because the heat also improves the blood supply to the part of the body affected by the tumor. In this way, the chemotherapeutic agents in the bloodstream also reach these hard-to-reach areas.
What else you can do to prevent cancer
If you smoke, you should stop as soon as possible. Sauna visits strengthen blood circulation and the immune system, while smoking worsens both. The risk of lung cancer and other types of cancer increases significantly in smokers. Furthermore, it is important to pay attention to your diet. Opt for a sugar-free diet as much as possible. Prefer organic foods and eat plenty of vegetables. Avoid alcohol. Heavy alcohol consumption increases the risk of breast cancer and colon cancer.
Allow yourself sunlight. When it hits the skin, our bodies can make vitamin D. This hormone is essential for our health and plays a big role in many processes. We also need sunlight to make melatonin. This hormone can protect against cancer. Just live as healthy as you possibly can. Beware of environmental toxins – cue radioactivity, dental fillings, electrosmog, toxins in clothes, etc. And last but not least, plan enough sports and exercise into your daily routine. All of these tips apply to cancer prevention as well as accompanying treatment. It is never too late to change your life.
Does the sauna now help against cancer?
After the stressful time of cancer diagnosis and treatment, many sufferers long for rest and relaxation. This is absolutely legitimate. It is important to learn to cope with the disease and to get back into the usual daily routine. Taking a sauna can be a valuable help in this respect. The sauna cannot cure diseases. But under certain circumstances it can give cancer patients valuable time to live.
Especially if it is combined with various other therapies and behaviors. All of this is, of course, provided that there is nothing medically wrong with taking a sauna. Please proceed with the necessary caution at all times. And don’t forget to take advantage of preventive medical checkups: Tumor diseases such as thyroid cancer, prostate cancer, etc. should be detected at an early stage if possible. Then the chances of recovery are good.
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