Nourish Body, Soul and the Environment
Sound too good to be true; is it possible that something as “indulgent” as a steam room/shower can be good for us on all these levels?
Physical Benefits of Steam Shower
Warm steam is a vasodilator, opening up blood vessels and lowering blood pressure for those with mild hypertension, among other things.
Faster Recovery from Exercise
Metabolic waste builds up in muscles causing soreness and fatigue. Taking a steam shower followed by a cold shower helps clear the body of these waste products.
Steam opens up pours and allows us to perspire freely therefore helping to clear skin. Steam softens body hair and reduces razor burn while shaving. 15 minutes is the minimum recommended time to see significant improvement.
Many of us have tried steam for a stuffed up nose, right? Well, a steam room, in addition to all its other benefits, helps with sinuous congestion, whether from chronic sinusitis, allergies or colds.
Steam opens up pours and allows botanicals to be absorbed into the skin more readily. Steam facilitates breathing allowing herbal essences to be inhaled with ease. Note: steam room can have an aroma (or essential oil) pump installed.
A study conducted at the Common Cold Unit at Harvard Hospital reported that “Nasal hyperthermia [raised sinus temperature] can improve the course of a common cold and also give immediate relief of symptoms.” Steam has positive effects on the symptoms of sinusitis, bronchitis and allergic responses.
Our bodies naturally raise our temperatures to fight infection: Many invasive organisms cannot survive once the body exceeds its normal temperature. Dr. Zane Gard, board-certified applied kinesiologist, said that “The only detoxification program that has proven successful in removing fat stored toxins from the body is hyperthermia or heat stress detoxification” (from Alternative Medicine, Second Edition: The Definitive Guide).
Dr. Andrew Weil says, in regards to using a steam shower or sauna, “Sweating helps the body rid itself of excess sodium, drugs, and some toxins, thereby reducing the workload of the liver. It also improves general circulation.”
Benefits of Steam Showers
- Stress Management – heat reduces muscle tension, promotes relaxation, helps with sleeping and, let’s face it, steam showers simply feel good, nurturing and is a natural, easy way to care for yourself.
- Great Addition to Your Self-Care Regimen – See that long list of physical benefits above? Don’t you feel just a bit more relaxed, less stressed knowing that something as simple as hanging out in a steam room for a few minutes a day/week can be of so much benefit? But seriously, whenever we take time to care for ourselves, we promote well-being—the mind and body are, after all, interconnected. And your well-being positively impacts the well-being of those around you.
- Dropping the Day’s Worries and Concerns – the moment you close your steam room’s door, you have both literally and metaphorically shut out the rest of the world. We spend so much of our time stressing out over what we’ve done in the past or what we have to do in the future, we rarely create for ourselves a place to simply be, in this moment. Ah, feel your shoulders drop a notch or two?
- A Ritual Place to Promote Well-Being on All Levels – since humans first began to create comforting rituals for self-care, for physical wellness and for spiritual nourishment (think Native American sweat lodges, early Roman and Greek baths, Turkish bath, Nordic saunas/baths, Japanese Mushi-Buro, ad infinitum!), we become sensitized to the benefit of ritual space and/or time to care for ourselves on all levels.
- Anxiety Reduction – a palpable reduction in anxiety is another result of dropping worries and concerns that so often plague us. No more laying in the shower, worried about how much water you’re wasting.
Water is a precious resource, especially in San Diego County. We all need to do our part in conserving water. A steam shower/bath far excels a regular shower in terms of water conservation.
If you like taking long, hot showers, simply soaking up the luscious, quite time one gets while showering/bathing, you needn’t feel bad or guilty any more—spending time in a steam shower is guilt-free. Water expands about 3000 times, at sea level, in its vapor/steam form.
A residential steam generator consumes less than 2 gallons of water during 30 minutes of operation. Electricity cost to run a steam generator is relatively small. Based upon an average kilowatt rate of $.08 per kilowatt hour, it will cost about $.30 to operate a 7kW steam generator for 30 minutes. However, electricity usage will vary by generator kilowatt size.
Contrast this water and energy usage with a regular shower which uses around 2.1 gallons per minute or 63 gallons per 30 minutes—ouch!
Further Reading and Peer Reviewed Medical Research
National Institute of Health
(defacto government health/medical organization and one of the world’s foremost medical research centers):
British Medical Journal
(a peer reviewed medical journal)
Dr. Andrew Weil
(Harvard Medical school MD graduate, botanist and researcher largely responsible for the Integrative Medicine movement):
(one of the best, well physician/MD vetted websites around for general health and for dealing with cancer-related issues):
- The Benefits of Steam Showers
- What Is the Best Way To Use a Steam Room?
- Sauna Vs. Steam Shower
- How Often Should One Take a Steam Bath?
- How to Use a Steam Room With High Blood Pressure
- Herbs to Use in Steam Baths
- How to Improve Skin Health While in the Steam Room
- Steam Bath Procedures
- Benefits of Using a Steam Room After a Workout
SteamDiego has been servicing the steam room at our club for many years and it is a very important amenity to our membership. On occasion when the unit goes down I need a company that understands we need this unit back up and operating as soon as possible to keep our customers happy. Steve understands this and does everything in his power to accomplish this. I wouldn’t have anyone else work on our unit besides SteamDiego because I trust them.
La Jolla, CA
Steam Diego is the BEST. Steve Garber not only provides exemplary service he goes above and beyond. Steve was not only able to address the issue at hand, but also where our steam shower was manufactured (5 other plumbers we not even able to identify the machine). Steve happened to know the company and manufacturer! It was because of Steve’s long time in the industry and valuable relationship that we were able to get our steam shower rebuilt and installed in time for the sale of our house with no hassle. This kind of service is a GEM!! I will use Steam Diego again and I would advise anyone to do the same!
Paradise Valley, AZ
SteamDiego is the very best in the biz. They are my go to guys for issues relating to my steam shower. They have saved me a small fortune with their expertise!
Steve Garber sizes up the situation and fixes it competently and efficiently. When indicated, he will send out someone who will do the job effectively and reliably. Steve is my “go to” person for any plumbing problem.
La Jolla, CA
Steamdiego has been taking care of my steam sauna for over 15 years. Just replaced one of the valves on it. Quick and efficient. And had the parts I needed in stock! Thanks!
San Diego, CA
I have used Steam Diego for a number of years. Steve (owner) always provides excellent service and advice with regard to our steam unit in our master bath. I highly recommend Steam Diego.
San Diego, CA
Me and my boyfriend have had our steam room for the last 13 years and love it. If there is ever any issue, which is rare, Steve always comes over right away. He is extremely professional and very knowledgeable. We would not trade him in for anybody. His prices are perfect and is always on top of servicing our steam unit. Thank you Steve, you are the greatest!
San Diego, CA
Steam Diego was a pleasure to work with. We’ve used several other companies over the years to help maintain our custom shower steamer, and now that we’ve found Steam Diego, they’re on our speed dial! Thank you for your prompt, professional and excellent service.
Vista, San Diego, CA
Steve Garber (SteamDiego and Garber Plumbing) is the best. He procured, installed, and maintained the steam generator for our steam room at our big and busy Yoga school. We’ve worked with him for over 10 years, and he’s the highest quality plumber / steamroom expert I’ve ever known. It’s the quality of his work, always done right, always done safely, to code, and with the best materials that let’s me sleep at night knowing all will work well and last. He’s honest and very fair, and is more than worth it. He has access and connection to great resources. An example of finding someone who will do it right the first time, rather than try to cut corners and have to have things redone, not last, and ultimately paying more for it. Steve is highly intelligent and creative. A very good and decent person. I trust no one more to call for any plumbing or steam room related issue.
San Diego, CA