All information shared from Chi Machine International unless otherwise mentioned.
What is Far-Infrared Therapy (FIR) and what does it do:
Far-Infrared Rays are waves of energy, totally invisible to the naked eye, which penetrate the surface of the skin where they gently and elevate the body’s surface temperature to 107.6F/42C and above, whilst positively activating body systems and functions.
History – How Far-Infrared Heat Therapy came into being:
Our bodies radiate far-infrared energy through the skin at 3 to 50 microns, with most output at 9.4 microns. Our palms emit FIR energy also, between 8 and 14 microns. ‘Palm Healing’, an ancient tradition in China, has used the healing properties of far-infrared rays for 3,000 years. These natural healers emit energy and heat radiating from their hands to heal. Current research conducted in Taiwan has measured significant far-infrared energy emitted from the hands of Chi Gong masters. Yogis in India also employ palm healing and recommend it especially for relieving eye strain. Thermal therapy has in fact been in existence for thousands of years, dating back to ancient civilizations such as the Finns, the Romans, the ancient Chinese, the American Indians, and the Egyptians 5,000 years ago.
Since ancient times, people have known that exposure to sunshine can maintain and enhance health. Sun therapy is a form of natural FIR thermal therapy. Far-Infrared Rays are the invisible rays of natural sunlight that have the longest wavelength. However, sunbathing should only be enjoyed in moderation since sunlight contains ultra-violet ray which can burn the skin. There is also no temperature control, and sunshine is only available seasonally. Pure Far-Infrared heat emitted from healing units, unfortunately, does not contain Vitamin D, but fortunately, it does not contain ultraviolet ray.
The evolution of Far-Infrared Technology
For many decades, scientific evidence has found that heat can maintain and enhance the wellness of the human body. Scientists have researched different ways on how to develop more effective forms of thermal heat therapy that target specific areas and enable deep heat penetration.
Traditional forms of heat therapy can be hazardous, uncomfortable, unhygienic, inefficient and ineffective. Traditional saunas create exposure to extremely high temperatures causing heat stress which can have detrimental effects on health, especially for people with heart challenges or needing to sustain blood pressure. Thermal compression’s and wraps are uncomfortable, heat is easily lost, temperature does not remain constant and maintaining a thermal compression or wrap can be problematic and inconvenient.
Research and development in the sixties – notably most extensively in Japan and also Germany – introduced the Far-Infrared Ray (FIR) thermal technology. This revolutionized thermal technology to an effective, safe, natural, hygienic, and efficient approach to thermal treatment. Today there are multiple health and medical professionals internationally who rehabilitate and look after numerous physical challenges by using heat therapy for humans and as well as animals. Relief for sports injuries via thermal therapy is one example, whilst detoxification is another.
Dr. Tadashi Ishikawa, a member of the Research and Development Department of Fuji Medical, received a patent in 1965 for a zirconia ceramic infrared heater used in the first healing infrared thermal systems. Medical practitioners in Japan were the only ones using infrared thermal systems for 14 years. In 1979, they were finally released for public use. The technique has been further refined into far-infrared thermal systems that have been sold in the USA since the 1980’s. One use of Far-Infrared heat in the USA has been in the form of panels used in hospital nurseries to warm newborns.
There have been well over 700,000 far-infrared thermal systems sold in Asia for whole body treatments. An additional 30 million plus people have received localized far-infrared treatment in Asia, Europe, and Australia with FIR lamps, which emit the same 2-25 micron wave bands as employed in a whole body system. In Germany, physicians in an independently developed form have used the whole body Far-Infrared Therapy for over 80 years.
Far-Infrared technology is generating outstanding results and is rapidly gaining worldwide recognition and acclaim: The benefits of FIR technology are truly phenomenal beyond the initial feelings of well being and relaxation. A wide variety of far-infrared units are available to the public internationally.
Far-Infrared (FIR) Potential Benefits
“Give me the power to produce fever and I’ll cure all disease.”
– Parmenides, 500 BC.
While more large scale research needs to be done to prove the benefits of Far-Infrared Therapy, here are some potential benefits from existing research and patient testimonials.
1) Improve blood circulation and skin complexion
- Far-Infrared expands capillaries which stimulates increased blood flow, regeneration, circulation and oxygen.
- It also maintains and promotes healthy lung function
- If sebaceous glands are activated, accumulated cosmetics in pores can be eliminated through the skin (sweat and oil glands), resulting in clearer skin
2) Strengthens cardiovascular system
- Far-Infrared can strengthen the cardiovascular system by causing heart rate and cardiac output increase, and diastolic blood pressure decrease – research by NASA in the early 1980s led to the conclusion that far-infrared stimulation of cardiovascular function would be the ideal way to maintain cardiovascular conditioning in American astronauts during long space flight
- FIR and the gentle tissue warming has also been shown to help improve the ‘health’ of the cells that line our blood vessels, which if left untreated may increase the risk of heart disorders.
3) Improve detoxification
- Far-Infrared is excellent for detoxification and helps lymphatic cleansing
- Scientists in Japan report that in the FIR treatment of clogged capillary vessels, heat expands the capillaries and then initiates the start of a process to dissolve hidden toxins.
- Far-Infrared thereby promotes the elimination of fats, chemicals and toxins from the blood: poisons, heavy metals – carcinogenic substances from food processing – lactic acid, free fatty acids, and subcutaneous fat associated with aging and fatigue – excess sodium associated with blood pressure – and uric acid.
- Where these toxins accumulate, blood circulation is blocked and cellular energy is impaired. Elimination begins when an 8-10 micron Far-Infrared wave is applied to these large water molecules and the water begins to vibrate. This vibration reduces the ion bonds of the atoms that are holding together the molecules of water. As the vibration continues, breakdown of the water molecules occurs and encapsulated gases and other toxic materials are released.
4) Wound healing
- Some recent good quality experimental and clinical scientific studies (2003) from Japan have shown FIR to result in more rapid wound healing which was independent of changes in blood flow and skin temperature.
- FIR helped this healing by stimulating a group of cells called fibroblasts to make more collagen which is a very important part of good wound healing and tissue repair.
- Furthermore, it supports cell growth, DNA syntheses, and protein synthesis all necessary during tissue repair and regeneration. Excellent for healing burns, scar tissue and skin problems such as acne and skin breakouts – anti-aging effects and lessening/softening of wrinkles due to enhanced collagen production.
5) Relaxation and pain/aches management
- FIR relieves nervous tension and relaxes auto-neuro muscles thereby helping the body make the most of its intended healing abilities.
- FIR reduces soreness on nerve endings and muscle spasms, as muscle fibres are heated. As a result, rapid reduction of swelling, inflammation and associated pain occurs. Relaxation of muscles and relief of muscular aches – reduces back, shoulder and neck pains.
- FIR soothes tension and stress in both body and mind.
6) Immunity boosting
- Far-Infrared strengthens and supports the Immune system by supporting increased production of white blood cells (leukocytes) by the bone marrow and killer T-cells by the thymus.
- “Natural killer cells in the immune system are crucial to effective immune defence. Hyperthermia releases a bunch of zytokines and heat shock proteins which make cancer cells more immunogenic that means they are better recognized by the natural killer cells. NK cells are essential in killing virus-infected cells and destroying cancer cells. The nutrients selenium, ß-glycan and zinc increase circulating levels of natural killer cells and boost their cancer-killing activity.” – Extract from an article written by Dr. Friedrich Douwes, Klinic St. Georg, Germany.
7) Cancer support
- Far-Infrared Thermal Therapy – commonly known as hyperthermia across Europe and Asia – provides support in the destruction of malignant cells which supposedly cannot survive if the temperature of the cell becomes 107.6F/42C and above
- Hyperthermia is used worldwide by hospitals and thermal oncologists. Here are just a few countries that is can be found in use such as Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, France, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Hungry, Turkey, Iran, India, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Japan.
- Hyperthermia is used extensively in Asia and Europe – especially Japan and Germany – but is only fairly recently in comparison, being researched and utilized within the USA, acknowledged and attested to by the American Cancer Association and the National Cancer Institute on their respective websites.
- Targeting the disease and its macro environment is a modern goal. One of these targets is the blocking of tumor angiogenesis (the growth of blood vessels that feed tumors). Blocking the formation of vessels is slowing down cancer growth, facilitating apoptosis – the programmed cancer cell death – and preventing tumor metastases respectively cancer spread throughout the body.
- “Hyperthermia has also a marked anti-angiogenetic effect. The tumor vessels are not as well built as normal capillaries; they are less organized and cannot constrict and relax as normal capillaries. In the early phase of hyperthermia, when the temperature in tumor tissue is rising, the vessels relax to increase the blood flow to the tumor tissue, but as soon as the temperature goes higher then 40°C the constriction of the blood flow stops, it comes to formation of microthrombi causing hypoxemia in the cancer tissue, which together with other important mechanisms induce apoptosis and cancer cell death. So hyperthermia is an elegant form of anti-angiogenesis.” – Extract from an article written by Dr. Friedrich Douwes, Klinic St. Georg, Germany – Integrative Cancer Therapy Concept.
This article is adapted from Chi Machine International unless otherwise mentioned.