Red Light Therapy has become an increasingly popular practice, primarily within medical offices, salons, and dermatology offices.
Red light therapy can be used in order to achieve many benefits.
These are our favorites:
- Pain Reduction
- Skin Health and Collagen Production
- Muscle Recovery
- Better Sleep
- Mood Stabilization
- Neurological Wellbeing
- Positive Cellular Replication
Inflammation generally occurs in the body where there is a type of trauma, or can show up more chronically as the result of an autoimmune related disease.
Although these types of inflammations occur due to different causes, they both generate pain within the body, no matter their origin.
When the body responds to an injury or autoimmune disease with inflammation, that response is normal.
But, over time, frequent inflammation can cause chronic and significant pain.
Researchers have found that when an individual is struggling with inflammation, exposure to red light increases ATP production (Adenosine triphosphate, also known as ATP.
This is a molecule that carries energy within cells), allowing for the body to increase blood flow and energy to the damaged and inflamed areas of the body.
SKIN HEALTH AND COLLAGEN PRODUCTION
The skin is composed of two main proteins, collagen and elastin.
These proteins are responsible for the quality and texture of the skin, and if these proteins are lacking, the skin will often appear and feel wrinkly, dry, and itchy.
Red light therapy has proven to be helpful in increasing collagen, elastin, and other fibroblast cells that increase cell generation and deposition of collagen.
When this happens, wrinkles will decrease, wounds will heal, and will increase overall skin cell production, increasing the texture and quality of the skin.
Red light therapy in therapeutic doses demonstrates benefits ranging from decreasing fine lines, to the improvement of psoriasis and acne.
Nearly 50 studies have been performed on both trained and untrained individuals who have engaged in exercise.
These studies helped to determine whether or not red light therapy plays a significant role in muscle recovery.
Within these articles, researchers suggest that the application of red and near infrared light after exercise dramatically increased the rate of muscle recovery in both groups of individuals.
The National Institute of Health published ‘Photobiomodulation In Human Muscle Tissue: An Advantage In Sports Recovery’. The clinical results found on muscle recovery in the studies highlighted by this journal were remarkable.
Here is what it says on the biological process behind the increase muscle repair:
“The rationale for using PBM on muscles relies on the well-known stimulation of mitochondrial activity that occurs after red or near-infrared photons delivered to the tissue have been absorbed by cytochrome c oxidase.
Muscles rely heavily on adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is the biological source of energy needed for muscle work...
Therefore robust increased ATP levels are the most popular hypothesis to explain the extraordinary effects that PBM appears to exert on muscle tissue.”
IMPROVEMENT OF SLEEP
Although sleep is a bodily function that although seems common and natural, nearly 27 percent of people in a new Consumer Reports survey of 4,023 U.S. adults said they had trouble falling asleep or staying asleep most nights.
And 68 percent—or an estimated 164 million Americans—struggled with sleep at least once a week.
One of the causes (of many), that individuals struggle with normal sleep patterns primarily has to do with blue light waves that are emitted from TV’s, computers, and smartphones that imbalance our natural circadian rhythms.
Limiting screen time can help achieve a good night’s sleep, but for most of us, we are required to spend six to eight hours, five days a week, at a minimum, in front of screens due to the technological nature of the majority of the jobs within our society.
In order to combat this and increase exposure to the red light that our body needs, it is important to make an effort to expose your body to red light.
Red light naturally occurs during morning light, when most of us are already at work or headed that way.
One of the solutions to this problem is incorporating a red light instrument into your daily routine, such as a near/far infrared sauna.
This will increase red light exposure and combat the blue light exposure that our society has become accustomed to.
Similar to the ways in which red light helps increase sleep, red light has similar effects on boosting and stabilizing mood as well.
Because quality of sleep is so directly related to mood and mood stability, red light therapy is a great way to boost mood along with adding a positive impact upon an individual’s sleep schedule.
According to The National Institute of Health, exposure to the red and near infrared spectrum of light is incredibly beneficial towards neurological health, in particular, neurogenesis.
Neurogenesis is the process by which new neurons are formed in the brain. Neurogenesis is crucial when an embryo is developing, but also continues in certain brain regions after birth and throughout our lifespan.
The National Institute Of Health has been studying the effects of light on brain health for several decades. Here is an excerpt from a recent journal publication on the topic:
“Animal research has shown that PBM stimulates neurogenesis and protects against cell death.
Data suggest that red light, close to the NIR spectrum (670 nm), protects the viability of cell culture after oxidative stress, as indicated by mitochondria membrane potentials.”
The implications of this research is promising for brain degenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s, ALS, and Alzheimer’s.
Furthermore, not only is red and near infrared light correlated to increased neurogenesis, it may also reduce inflammation in the brain.
Many brain related disorders demonstrate mild to severe inflammation. Inflammation of the brain can be reduced by sparking mitochondrial activity.
This improves ATP production and blood flow to the brain, similar to the way that red light therapy aids in muscle recovery.
POSITIVE CELLULAR REPLICATION
Due to the fact that all organisms have life spans, even cells, and disease tends to occur when the lifespan of a cell or cells is compromised.
With this, new cells aren’t able to regenerate quickly enough to combat the diseased cells, cells can ultimately end up dying more quickly than they regenerate.
When our bodies are subjected to external factors such as plastics, pollution, pathogens, and toxic materials, they create an adverse effect upon our cells, forcing them towards cell death.
This happens more quickly than if our bodies had not been subjected to these toxic environmental factors.
One way to combat premature cell death is through red and near infrared light in the amount of therapeutic doses.
When the body is exposed to this type of light, it becomes possible to reverse the premature death that some cells within our bodies face.
WHY RED LIGHT THERAPY?
Red light therapy benefits the body in many ways, from cell growth and regeneration, to the resetting of the body’s natural circadian rhythms.
Red light therapy has been proven through countless stories to benefit any and every user.