Infrared has been widely studied and used for centuries. Thermal therapy can even be traced back to ancient civilizations such as the Finns, Romans, Indians and most well know infrared practitioners, the Chinese. In China, some use the ancient technique of palm healing, using the therapeutic properties of infrared. In India, yogi’s have been known to use infrared palm healing, especially for eye strains. In Asia, over 700,000 infrared thermal systems have been sold and an additional 30 million people have received localized infrared treatment in Asia, Europe and Austria.

In the last few decades extensive clinical research has documented a wide range of observations of the potential wellness benefits of infrared therapy as delivered by the FIT Bodywrap system. A lot of that research which was done by FIT Bodywrap’s own Clinical Director, Dr. Aaron Flickstein.

So, what exactly is infrared? Infrared is part of the electromagnetic spectrum, which is a spectrum of light radiation. Yes, radiation! But not all radiation is bad! The term radiation just means the release of energy as moving waves or streaming particles. The radiation we receive from the electromagnetic spectrum is considered non-harmful, natural radiation. It includes everything from radio waves to UV rays, micro waves, and color. This is a naturally occurring process and because the earth itself emits radiation, all living things on the planet do as well.

fit em spectrum

Infrared is light that we cannot see, but instead feel as heat. Your natural body heat, heat from a campfire, and even warmth we feel from the sun are all infrared. We experience small amounts of this safe and natural heat every day. Infrared heat is safely absorbed by the body because our bodies also produce it!

How Infrared Heat was Discovered

herschel experimentA British astronomer and German composer, Sir William Herschel began studying the planets and stars in the 1700’s and he eventually began to build reflecting telescopes. In the 1800’s while he used colored filters to observe sunlight passing through prisms Herschel discovered infrared by testing the individual temperatures of each color and measuring the temperature just beyond the red portion of the spectrum (where no sunlight was visible). During this process, he found the infrared region's temperature was the highest of all. Thus, leading to the discovery that there is light we cannot see with our eyes and that infrared that shows itself in the form of heat. Fun fact, Herschel also discovered the planet Uranus.

Shortly after Hershel’s findings, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, an American surgeon, scientist and proponent of holistic health treatments opened what we would call a wellness center with a focus on nutrition, exercise and holistic health care. Although he was not the creator, it was during this time Dr. Kellogg began using horizontal cabinets for his patients to sit in and submerge their bodies in heat to produce sweat and promote healing. He later went on to establish the American Medical Missionary College, which merged with Illinois State University in the 1900’s.

Types of Infrared Heat

There are three types or wavelengths of infrared heat. Our sun’s output is made up of a mixture of them, but the human body emits far infrared specifically.

  • Near infrared penetrates skin deep and can help with skin conditions. This is the infrared heat you feel in a sauna.
  • Mid infrared penetrates a bit deeper to improve circulation.
  • Far infrared warms the body directly, not the air around it. It penetrates deeply into the body (up to 1.5”) allowing it to provide the most benefits.

The FIT Bodywrap produces far infrared heat, so it strictly penetrates the body, providing wellness benefits such as pain relief, weight loss, cellulite reduction, skin rejuvenation, relaxation, and so much more.

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