How Many Calories Are Burned In A Sauna? (Calculator)

We’re reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Basking in the serene warmth of a sauna is, for many, a cherished wellness practice.

Yet, beyond relaxation, a question often arises – just how many calories are burned in a sauna?

On average, a person can burn between 30 and 90 calories during a 30-minute sauna session.

This is based on a 150-pound individual and can vary based on factors such as individual weight, metabolic rate, sauna temperature, duration of the sauna session, and hydration levels.

In this post, we will explain the calorie-burning potential of sauna sessions, including a calculator to help you estimate your own sauna calorie burn.

Let’s dive in!

Calorie Burn In A Sauna

How Many Calories are Burned in a Sauna? Man in Sauna

Saunas have long been associated with multiple health benefits, including improved cardiovascular health, reduced muscle soreness, and even detoxification.

However, the notion of a sauna session as a calorie-burning powerhouse is more complex and merits a detailed look.

Related: Joe Rogan Sauna: Type, Routine, and Benefits

Science of Calorie Burning In A Sauna

Contrary to common belief, time spent in a sauna isn’t equivalent to a workout when it comes to calorie expenditure.

This is because burning calories is generally tied to physical activities, where the body’s metabolism increases significantly.

In a sauna, your heart rate increases due to the heat, mimicking some effects of light to moderate exercise.

Body WeightThe heavier you are, the more calories you’ll burn due to increased basal metabolic rate.
Metabolic RateIndividuals with higher metabolic rates burn more calories at rest and during activities.
Sauna TemperatureThe body has to work harder at higher temperatures, leading to a slightly increased calorie burn.
Duration of Sauna SessionThe longer the session, the more calories you burn as your heart rate stays elevated for a longer period.
Hydration LevelDehydration can decrease your metabolic rate and thus decrease calorie burn. Staying hydrated ensures your metabolism operates effectively.

Your body also sweats, trying to cool itself down, which requires energy.

Related: Why Don’t I Sweat in the Sauna?

Consequently, there’s some caloric expenditure involved.

However, the majority of weight loss in a sauna is due to fluid loss (sweating) which is regained once you rehydrate.

The exact number of calories burned in a sauna isn’t easy to pin down as it depends on several factors including your weight, metabolism, the type of sauna (traditional vs infrared), temperature, and duration of the session.

FactorsImpact on Calorie Burning
Body weightThe heavier you are, the more calories you’ll burn.
MetabolismIndividuals with higher metabolic rates burn more calories.
Sauna typeInfrared saunas might burn more calories due to deeper heat penetration.
TemperatureHigher temperatures cause the heart to work harder, burning more calories.
DurationThe longer the session, the more calories burned.

Sauna Calorie Burn Calculator

Comprehensive Role of Sauna in Wellness

Sauna Spa

A sauna session, although not a high-calorie-burning activity, offers numerous other health benefits.

Regular sauna use can lead to improvements in cardiovascular health, muscle relaxation, stress relief, and even potentially enhanced immunity.

Moreover, it encourages the elimination of toxins through sweating, promoting overall wellness and contributing to a healthier lifestyle.

So, while the calories burned in a sauna might not seem substantial, its value is in its holistic contribution to a healthier lifestyle, offering both physical and mental benefits that go beyond the numbers.

Related: What to Wear in Sauna


Can a sauna session replace exercise in my weight loss plan?

While sauna sessions offer numerous health benefits, they should not be seen as a replacement for regular physical exercise.

The primary weight loss from sauna sessions is due to water loss, which is temporary.

Can using a sauna help me lose weight?

Sauna sessions can support a weight loss plan by promoting relaxation, relieving muscle soreness, and aiding in recovery.

The caloric expenditure in a sauna is less than that during physical exercise. A balanced diet and regular exercise remain the most effective ways to lose weight.

Are there any risks associated with using a sauna?

Saunas are generally safe for most people when used correctly.

However, due to the high heat, there’s a risk of dehydration or heat exhaustion if one doesn’t hydrate properly or stays in for too long.

How many calories does 15 minutes in a sauna burn?

On average, a 150-pound individual might burn between 15 and 45 calories during a 15-minute sauna session.

This estimate can vary based on personal factors such as weight, metabolic rate, and hydration levels.

Is a sauna good for losing weight?

While a sauna session can contribute to temporary weight loss due to sweating and water loss, it’s not an effective long-term weight loss strategy.

The weight loss is usually regained once you rehydrate.

How many calories do you burn every 10 minutes in a sauna?

A 150-pound individual might burn approximately 10 to 30 calories every 10 minutes in a sauna.

This varies based on factors such as weight, metabolic rate, sauna temperature, and hydration levels.

How many calories are burned in 1 hour of sauna?

For a 150-pound individual, approximately 120 to 360 calories might be burned in an hour-long sauna session.

Keep in mind that individual factors such as weight, metabolic rate, sauna temperature, and hydration levels can influence this estimate.

Does a sauna increase metabolism?

While a sauna session can cause a temporary increase in heart rate and metabolic rate due to the body’s effort to cool itself down, it does not lead to a long-term increase in basal metabolic rate.

Medical Advice Disclaimer


The information, including but not limited to text, graphics, images, and other material contained on this website, are for informational purposes only.

No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

About the Author

Drew Wilkins is a fitness and nutrition expert with a Master's in Biokinesiology (emphasis in Sports Science) from the University of Southern California and over a decade of experience as a personal trainer, nutrition consultant, and wellness coach. An avid surfer and soccer player, he brings a unique perspective to his research, advocating for a balanced approach to health that includes physical fitness, nutrition, and mental well-being.

Related Posts