Hello dear friends!
If my younger self could see me now- lounging on a mat made of amethyst and jade... But before you start judging my seemingly-frivolous spending habits, hear me out. This mat does way more than just look pretty, sewn tightly with gorgeous real stones- it’s earned the name of “magic mat,” after all! I use it on an almost daily basis, especially now in the cold season. And I do believe that it has helped me many times, resolve flare-ups, reduce pain, improve my mental clarity, and plenty more.
Do you wanna know what it is yet??
For those who have been following my Instagram, you’ve probably noticed a certain mat show up in my stories on more than one occasion. You may even be familiar with my own moniker for this act of therapeutic self-care: the detox space burrito. More on the burrito in a minute, but first lemme tell you a little bit about this mat.
It’s an infrared heat therapy mat! (scroll down if you want to see exactly the brand/model I use)
What the heck is that, you may be asking. Well, maybe you’ve heard of infrared saunas? Similar concept, but much more convenient design. If you haven't heard of infrared saunas, or want a refresher on how this type of heat therapy works, lemme give you a primer.
Infrared light (IR) is one of three ways that heat is transferred (physics lesson, comin’ at ya!), besides conduction and convection. The sun gives off over half of its total energy as infrared heat, which is one of the reasons why you feel so wonderful and warmed up from the inside out, when you spend time in the sunshine. Another example is with incandescent bulbs- only about 10% of their energy is converted to visible light, and the other 90% is infrared heat. Many household items like toasters, use IR to transfer heat too.
There are three kinds of IR waves- near, mid, and far-infrared rays. My mat only uses the far-infrared rays (FIR), which are on the other side of the electromagnetic spectrum from harmful UV rays. This type of heat is easily absorbed by the body, and creates a long-lasting sense of warmth and vitality...far better than huddling by a space heater, trust me! When you warm up the whole body like this, with infrared rays that penetrate deep into the tissue, you can enjoy some health benefits too.
I’ve had many of you ask me on my Instagram, what this magic mat is, that I talk about so much. There’s a reason why I use it, and post about it, a lot! I believe it’s a helpful tool for anyone struggling with chronic illnesses like Lyme, CFS, MS, and RA, or for anyone who has circulation issues.
So without further ado, here are just a handful of the benefits of using far-infrared heat therapy:
1. Boosts circulation
I admit, I’m one of those people who is always cold. My hands and feet especially! This can be a sign of poor circulation, often caused by chronic viral and/or bacterial infections. The FIR heat warms up the entire body, deep into the tissues, helping to relax blood vessels and muscles. Blood circulation quickens and smooths out, aiding in detoxification and reducing pressure on the vasculature.
2. Relieves pain
On some of my worst Lyme pain days, or if I woke up with a crick in my neck, I turn to my FIR mat. Within about 10-20 minutes, I feel a significant reduction in my pain levels. And unlike other forms of heat therapy like hot packs, the pain relief from the mat lasts so much longer, because it penetrates so deeply.
3. Loosens stiff joints and muscles
For better flexibility, range of motion, and ease of movement in general, FIR heat is the way to go. This type of heat therapy is used a lot to treat arthritis, sprains, bursitis, and other musculoskeletal injuries, and it works wonders whether you’re currently dealing with acute issues or not.
4. Improves detoxification
As you may already know, detox is something I harp on, as a key factor in recovering from chronic illness. Whatever we can do, to boost our bodies’ ability to “take out the trash,” is a good thing. And for those who may lack the ability to do a lot of exercise (one of the best detox methods), lying on a FIR mat for a while is a treat. Better circulation, looser muscles, and enhanced sweating work to release and move out harmful gunk.
5. Reduces fatigue and brain fog
One of the biggest benefits I’ve noticed from using my magic mat is that when I get up, I feel more energized and clear-headed. When we can enhance blood flow, especially to the brain, and relax/warm the body on a cellular level, our biochemistry can even out. FIR heat allows better distribution of electrolytes and other nutrients, along with calming the heart and associated anxiety.
6. Ramps up immunity
I’ll never forget the graph I saw one day in my college immunology class, showing the activity of the immune response according to body temperature. When we can raise our temp, even by a degree or two, our immune cells go into super-active mode. This kind of artificial mild “fever” can be beneficial when you’re trying to fight off a virus, whether that’s an acute flu or a chronic EBV. (Just be smart about this, and listen to your body’s cues)
7. Improves mood
Whenever I notice that I feel cranky, I check in with myself and see if I’m cold- seriously! Much of the time, it’s hard to be happy and relaxed when you’re cold down to your bones. I credit my FIR mat for turning around my irritability on more than one occasion. When you’re warm, your blood is pumping, and your muscles loose, your mood naturally improves. And remember, this warmth is different from the kind you get from sitting in front of a space heater, or wrapping up in blankets!
So, are you excited about FIR heat therapy yet? Honestly, it took me so long to finally decide to purchase one of these mats, but I have not regretted it ONCE. And this is coming from someone who is a minimalist, and experiences buyer’s remorse all the time!
This is the brand and model that I use:
This mat is large enough to cover my whole body when I lie down, which I needed. Plus, it’s got an auto-shutoff timer, and when the stones are heated, I get an additional healing effect from the negative ions. It’s extremely well-made and comes with great customer service too.
When I want a targeted detox session, I make it into a mini-sauna. I take off my clothes, lie down on the mat’s convenient cover (made to protect the mat and stones from sweat), and wrap myself up with a metallic blanket. The result? One warm, happy, detox space burrito! (Seriously, it looks like a mix between a spaceship and a Chipotle burrito, ha!)
If you want to try this amazing therapy technique, I’ve got a sweet deal for you.
Use the coupon code ABW10S for 10% OFF plus FREE shipping!
Well friends, it’s currently 38 degrees outside here in Denver, with snow on the ground. So I think it’s time for me to hop on my mat. Got more questions about FIR heat or my Inframat Pro? Leave me a comment below!
And as always,
~ Hoping you feel as well as possible ~
** This post contains affiliate links, which help to support my blogging. You can read more about that here. **