How Many Calories Do You Burn in a Sauna?

How Many Calories Do You Burn in a Sauna?

Exploring how many calories you burn in a sauna reveals an intriguing aspect of wellness routines that goes beyond mere relaxation.

Saunas, known for their therapeutic heat and relaxation benefits, also offers a unique advantage in terms of calorie expenditure.

This post explores the intricate relationship between sauna use and calorie burning, shedding light on how these sessions contribute to overall fitness goals and well-being.

How Saunas Burn Calories?

How Saunas Burn Calories?

Saunas make you sweat by heating your body. Your heart works harder to pump blood to the skin's surface as it tries to cool down. This increases your heart rate, just like when you exercise. When your heart beats faster, your body uses more energy and burns more calories.

Sitting in a sauna causes a rise in core temperature. To manage this heat, the body has to work hard. It pumps more blood and uses up oxygen at a quicker pace. This process needs energy, and burning energy means using calories. So, being in a sauna can help burn some extra calories along with other health benefits.

According to researcher Dean, using a sauna leads to considerable sweating, and the act of sweating demands energy expenditure. A commonly referenced estimate indicates that losing 500 grams of sweat during a sauna session could use up about 300 kcal, although this number may fluctuate.

The Role of Basal Metabolic Rate in Burning Calories in a Sauna

Your body has a basal metabolic rate (BMR). This is how many calories you need to keep your body running while at rest. In a sauna, your heart rate goes up just like when you exercise. Because of this, your BMR also increases while in the heat.

Higher BMR means more calories burned. Saunas make your body work harder to cool down, burning extra calories in the process. Even when sitting still in the hot air, you use more energy than usual. That's because of the boost to your metabolism from the heat.

Read More: A Beginner's Quick Guide to Sauna Temperatures

How Much of an Impact Does Sauna Time Have on Calorie Burning?

How Much of an Impact Does Sauna Time Have on Calorie Burning?

Sauna time can boost your body's calorie burning. As you sit in the heat, your heart works harder to cool you down. This makes your body use more energy, which burns calories. The increase is like walking at a slow pace.

Still, don't expect huge changes on the scale from sauna alone. It should go hand in hand with exercise and healthy eating for better results. Regular sauna visits do help, but they are just one part of staying fit and losing weight.

Read More: How Long to Sit in a Sauna after a Workout Explained

How Many Calories Can You Burn in a Sauna for 20 Minutes?

You might burn between 10 to 30 sauna calories during a 20-minute sauna session. This number varies depending on your weight and metabolism. Think of it like taking a short, light walk.

Your body sweats and your heart rate goes up slightly, just as it does with mild exercise. Sitting in the heat makes your body work harder to cool down, which uses energy.

Keep in mind that most of the weight lost in a sauna is water weight. As you sweat, you lose fluids. It's important to drink water and rehydrate after your time is up to stay healthy and safe!

Comparing Calorie Burn in Traditional vs Infrared Saunas

Comparing Calorie Burn in Traditional vs Infrared Saunas

When it comes to shedding calories, both traditional saunas and infrared saunas offer benefits, but they operate differently due to their distinct heating mechanisms. Understanding these differences is key for individuals aiming to maximize calorie burn during their sweat sauna sessions.

Related: Traditional vs. Infrared Sauna Options

Sauna Use and Weight Loss

Saunas heat up your body, making you sweat. This process can increase your heart rate, like when you exercise. Some people believe that using a sauna can help lose weight. Studies show infrared saunas may raise your metabolic rate. That means your body burns more calories even after you leave the sauna.

Weight loss in saunas is mainly from water loss because of sweating. You need to drink fluids to stay safe and healthy afterward. Real body fat loss requires a mix of diet, exercise, and consistent sauna use.

Infrared saunas might be better for fat loss over time than traditional steam saunas because they heat your body differently.

Soaking in a sauna alone won't melt away the pounds quickly, but it can support other weight-loss efforts. By adding regular sauna sessions to a routine of healthy eating and physical activity, some people may find it easier to reach their weight goals.

This research emphasizes the effectiveness of sauna therapy in significantly reducing weight and body fat in obese individuals over a two-week period, without raising plasma ghrelin levels. This indicates the potential of sauna therapy not only in obesity management but also in enhancing cardiovascular health.

Read More: Near vs. Far Infrared Sauna

Does a Sauna Burn Fat?

Sitting in a sauna does help burn calories, but it's not quite the same as burning fat from exercising. Your heart rate goes up, and your body has to work harder to cool down, which uses energy.

This means you're burning calories just like you do when you’re working out. Infrared saunas are even better for this because they make your body heat up more deeply, helping you use more calories.

Don’t get too excited, though – most of what you lose in the sauna is water weight from sweating. Sure, that can make the numbers on the scale go down right after you step out, but the effect won't last long.

You'll need a healthy diet and regular exercise for sustainable weight loss. A sauna alone isn't a quick fix for shedding fat, but it can be one part of an overall plan to keep fit and healthy.

How to Calculate Calories Burned in a Sauna?

How to Calculate Calories Burned in a Sauna?

Calculating the calories you burn in a sauna involves some math. You'll need to know your weight and the length of your sauna session.

  • Start with your resting metabolic rate (RMR). This is how many calories you burn at rest in a day.
  • Find an online RMR calculator or use this formula: (weight in pounds / 2.2) x 24 for women and (weight in pounds / 2.2) x 24 x 1.1 for men.
  • Use an online sauna calorie-burned calculator to make it easier.
  • Enter your weight and the duration of your time in the sauna into the calculator.
  • If you prefer to do it manually, take the number of calories typically burned while sitting quietly for a certain period.
  • Multiply that number by the length of your sauna session to get an estimate of the total calories burned.
  • Keep in mind this will only give you an approximate value; individual factors can change results.
  • Wearing a heart rate monitor during your sauna sessions may provide more accurate calorie burn data based on your specific heart rate response.
  • Note that sweating may cause weight loss due to water loss, not necessarily fat loss; rehydrate after each session.

Read More: Top 5 Benefits of Saunas

Health Benefits of Sauna Beyond Calorie Burning

Health Benefits of Sauna Beyond Calorie Burning

Health Benefit Description
Elimination of Toxins and Heavy Metals It may help in the release of impurities and heavy metals through sweating. Additional research is suggested.
Improved Recovery After Exercise It may aid in reducing muscle soreness and in promoting muscle relaxation.
Reduction of Morbidity and Mortality It may lower the risk of death from heart disease and other health events. More studies are needed.
Enhancement of Respiratory Function It may assist in loosening phlegm, clearing nasal congestion, and reducing asthma symptoms.
Pain and Fatigue Management It may alleviate symptoms associated with chronic pain and fatigue conditions.
Stress Reduction and Mental Wellbeing It may enhance relaxation and mental well-being.


How many calories does 30 minutes in the sauna burn?

The number of calories burned in 30 minutes in a sauna can vary widely depending on the individual's body weight and sauna temperature, but estimates range from 300 to 600 calories.

Does sauna burn calories 10 minutes?

Yes, spending 10 minutes in a sauna can burn calories, though the amount is less compared to longer sauna sessions, with estimates suggesting around 100 to 200 calories burned depending on various factors like the type of sauna and the individual's metabolic rate.

What does 15 minutes in a sauna do?

Spending 15 minutes in a sauna can help relax muscles, improve circulation, and potentially aid in stress reduction while also contributing to a modest amount of calorie burn due to an increased heart rate similar to mild exercise.

How many calories do you burn by sitting in a sauna?

You can burn a small number of calories, sometimes referred to as "cals," because your body works harder to cool down due to an elevated body temperature.

Is using a sauna like doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT)?

No, being in a sauna does not match the calorie-burning effects of high-intensity interval training since you're not actively moving your muscles.

Can going to the sauna help prevent cardiovascular diseases?

Regularly visiting a far infrared sauna may improve heart health by increasing blood circulation but always check with your doctor first.

Should I drink water after using the sauna?

Yes, rehydrating after using a sauna is crucial because sweating can cause dehydration and loss of electrolytes, which are important for muscle function.

How many calories do you burn in a sauna for 30 minutes?

In a sauna for 30 minutes, you can burn approximately 30-60 calories, depending on factors like weight and sauna temperature.

How many calories do you burn in a sauna calculator?

There isn't a one-size-fits-all sauna calorie calculator, as the calorie burn depends on individual factors such as weight and metabolic rate.

How many calories burned in sauna for 15 minutes?

For a 15-minute sauna session, you might burn about 15-30 calories, with variations based on personal health metrics and sauna conditions.

How many calories burned in sauna for 10 minutes?

In 10 minutes, the calorie expenditure in a sauna could be around 10-20 calories, influenced by the individual's weight and the sauna's heat.

How many calories do you burn in a sauna for 1 hour?

Spending 1 hour in a sauna could lead to burning roughly 60-120 calories, though this estimate varies with each person's unique physiological characteristics.