In most recent study, Lance C. Dalleck, Ph.D. want to see how exercising in sauna suits affect weight loss. So, his research team from the High Altitude Exercise Physiology Program at Western State Colorado University recruited 45 overweight or obese adults between the age 18 and 60 years old with a BMI between 25 and 40, a body fat percentage over 22 percent for men and 32 percent for women, and rated as low-to-moderate risk for cardiovascular, pulmonary, and/or metabolic disease.

They were then divided up into 3 groups:

  • a sauna/ sweat suit exercise group,
  • a regular exercise group, and
  • a control group.

For 8 weeks, both exercise groups participated in a progressive workout program, performing three 45-minute moderate-intensity workouts (elliptical, rower, and treadmill) and two 30-minute vigorous-intensity workouts (spin class) per week.

They all ate normally and didn’t do any exercise outside of the study’s guidelines. The only difference between the two groups? One group worked out in sauna/ sweat suits while the other group worked out in their usual gym clothes.

And guess what?

At the end of the trial, all exercisers saw improvements in systolic and diastolic blood pressure and total cholesterol as well as a decreased waist circumference.

What is interesting, however, is that the Sweat Suit group saw a greater improvement in basically every key measure over those who exercised in regular clothes.

For one, the sweat suit group dropped 2.6 percent of their body weight and 13.8 percent of their body fat versus the regular exercisers, who only dropped 0.9 percent and 8.3 percent respectively.

The sweat suit group also saw a greater improvement in their VO2 max (an important measure of cardiovascular endurance), increase in fat oxidation (the body’s ability to burn fat as fuel), and a greater decrease in fasting blood glucose (an important marker for diabetes and prediabetes).

Last but certainly not least, the sweat suit group also saw an 11.4% increase in resting metabolic rate (how many calories your body burns at rest) compared to the regular exercise group, which saw a 2.7% decrease.


It all comes down to EPOC, or post-exercise oxygen consumption, says Dalleck. (That super awesome thing behind the “afterburn effect.”) “Exercising in heat increases EPOC,” he says, “and there are a lot of favorable things (like burning more calories) that come with EPOC.”

So, if you combine light exercises with these sweat suit or pants, you will definitely get faster results as proven by the research of Dr. Dalleck.


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