Updated: Feb 2
Red light and near-infrared therapy have become all the rave in the past several years and with what people are saying about it we can understand why. Heck, we have even dabbled with a few incandescent and LED red
light therapy bulbs here and there in the past couple of years ourselves and our Super Sauna Photon Genius even hits the near-infrared spectrum as well as the mid and far. So, I guess you can say we have some experience with both technologies.
However, in recent years and this is where things may get a little complicated is that many manufacturers are now going head to head to try to prove that their technologies are better than another and to be quite frank with all of you, it’s left many people completely lost and really confused about what type of sauna or light therapy panels to purchase. As much as I wish we had a simple answer for all of you, unfortunately, I don’t think one exists just yet because this type of therapy is still fairly new for in-home use and somewhat progressive.
Using RLT (Red Light Therapy) on its own apart from a full spectrum of heat and color therapy as we provide here with our Super Sauna Photon Genius just doesn’t have a ton of conclusive evidence or long term studies to fully back up some of their claims. (1) Actually, after researching this particular subject myself and looking for as much reputable information as possible that wasn’t funded by a particular company or person with a vested interest in selling these products, I not only found information strongly promoting red light/near-infrared therapies benefits (2) which were mostly from LED red light-emitting diodes or laser lights but I also found the complete opposite. Some even go as far as to mention that near-infrared light on its own could in fact actually cause some major complications over time if used for too long or too often. Some even go as far as to say it could potentially cause photoaging of the skin, cataracts (3) and even possibly cancer if not used correctly. Take notice that I keep switching from saying red light therapy and near-infrared therapy, while they are not the same thing some say they have similar health benefits. So-called therapeutic RLT falls between 600-660 nm, releases virtually no heat and visible red light whereas, near-infrared therapy falls between 810-880 nm of energy and can produce a comfortable warming sensation and technically falls under the invisible light spectrum. While many say it is the near-infrared light that can cause potential health concerns if not used correctly, many would also argue that combining red light therapy with near-infrared wavelengths is where you will see the most health benefits. However, you can now find LED diodes that will virtually release little to no infrared heat therapy.
However, on the opposite end of the spectrum, I was also able to find literature and people who absolutely swear by this therapy for improving their skin conditions, healing their eyes and completely ridding their body of pain! So, what is a person to think when the consensus on red light/near-infrared therapy is so divided?
Well here is my opinion based on my own personal experience as one of the owners of the Energy Balancing Light Studio and someone who has used these technologies. I think a good thing is a good thing so long as everything follows the rules of nature and is used with caution and balance.
This has always been our primary goal here at the Energy Balancing light studio which is why we selected the Super Sauna Photon Genius because it comes closest to providing the full light spectrum of the sun. However, for many, this sauna is just not a practical piece of equipment for in-home use which is why we decided to bring it to Canada in hopes of being able to provide these services to everyone that may need it. By keeping the same principals in mind, I do believe that there are some practical solutions for those looking for a decent in-home sauna solution if you can’t get out to use something like the Super Sauna Photon Genius on a regular basis or can’t really afford to spend a hefty amount of cash on a red light/near-infrared panel which is still fairly new in the grand scheme of things.
I would look for light therapies, perhaps even several of them that allow you to use all the healing benefits of these modalities together and because most of the research/studies on sauna therapy have been done over the years on conventional far-infrared heat therapy, I would consider that as my primary source of heat therapy while perhaps using a red light/near-infrared lamp or a smaller LED light/panel for targeted areas and shorter periods of time. If using red light/near-infrared therapy on your face consider only using it for about 5 to 10 minutes 1-2 times a day or 10-20 minutes on other areas of your body.
Let’s face it, while some of the research discusses the major health benefits of using RLT on its own the jury is still out on this one! Until these devices like PEMF have been out on the market for a longer period of time, we would recommend rearing on the side of caution. This also means using the proper eye protection with these bulbs or LED’s as suggested by RubyLux the manufacturer of the incandescent and LED red light/near-infrared bulbs that we use ourselves and sticking to shorter sessions with this type of technology.
However, because we have personal experience with RubyLux’s bulbs and we have been using them for several years with no ill side effects, we feel fairly confident that these bulbs would be a really good option for those of you looking to make your way into this wonderful world of light therapy at a super affordable price. We also fully stand behind this company because of their experience with chronic illnesses such as Lyme disease and because of their amazing customer service and drive to bring the best non-toxic products to the market at the most affordable prices.
With all that aside, let’s jump right into why getting a little bit of red light and near-infrared therapy could be very beneficial in today’s modern-day world.
So many of us spend way too much time indoors or even outside exposed to what is called junk light which can eventually lead to what is now known as Blue Light Toxicity (4). Blue Light Toxicity can occur when an individual is exposed to too much blue light from various technologies such as computer screens, smart TV’s, cell phones, LED lights in an office space, in homes or even while walking or driving down the road from overhead street lamps or the headlights of another vehicle. This form of light toxicity is also amplified if these devices are used once the sun goes down because this is the time when our brain should be receiving signals from the environment to go to sleep which is ultimately triggered by a lack of blue and green light in the atmosphere, hence red light or absolute darkness is best after dark.
Being exposed to too much blue light on any given day can wreak havoc on your circadian rhythms which is ultimately responsible for every physical, mental, or behavioral change in your body. The study of circadian rhythms is called chronobiology. While our biological clocks which are an innate timing device found in many organisms is different from our circadian rhythms, they are both related. Our Biological clocks are what produce our circadian rhythms and regulate their timing. Although some of these systems are produced internally many are regulated by the light in our environment. If left unaltered by modern-day blue light polluters the natural light in our environment is supposed to be received through our eyes into a master clock which is located in our brain. This particular structure is called the (SCN) suprachiasmatic nucleus and is found in the hypothalamus.
However, when one is exposed to too much artificial blue light this can disrupt our circadian rhythms which not only influence our sleep-wake cycles but also our hormone releases, eating habits, digestion, body temperature, mitochondrial ATP levels and can eventually lead to chronic health conditions such as sleep disorders, obesity, diabetes, depression, bipolar disorder, and SAD better known as seasonal affective disorder.
Many are now trying to counteract all this blue light through the use of Blue Blockers or exposing the eyes and skin to short periods of red/near-infrared light therapy 1-2 times throughout the day. Some light panels which are used for red and near-infrared therapy use LED lights but Kevin and I are not particularly fond of LEDs for various different reasons that I will discuss later on in this blog post. That’s is why we use a premium incandescent near-infrared light bulb which is also human grade and does not produce any ultraviolet rays, contains no mercury or Teflon, does not off-gas toxic fluorinated fumes and is free of heavy metals and other toxic substances. In fact, these bulbs are also guaranteed and CE certified.
Red light and near-infrared wavelengths may not only help to regulate and balance the master clock or SCN systems in our brain but also has the potential to eliminate any negative effects that come along with too much blue light exposure and suppressed melatonin production which is also produced in this portion of our brain and controls our quality of sleep. (5) As an added benefit it may also reduce wrinkles, increase collagen, elasticity, provide pain relief, speed healing and even increase circulation if used responsibly and for shorter periods of time.
While our Super Sauna Photon Genius provides the full spectrum of light including near, mid and far-infrared wavelengths we also offer the services of strictly red/near-infrared therapy for those that prefer to use red light later in the evenings because of its therapeutic effects to help induce a restful night’s sleep. We often recommend using these two saunas in conjunction with one another during night sessions because we have found that they were both very beneficial for our own personal healing. For more information about our services or to book a session with either of our saunas, you can contact us HERE.
Even though we offer our service sessions separately just know that any of our pieces of equipment can be combined and used during one session. We may even recommend more than just one technology depending on your individual circumstances. However, if there is something in particular that you are interested in trying and we can slot some time in during your session, we would be more than happy to try to accommodate your request.
For those of you looking for a practical, in-home, red light or near-infrared therapy solution and while keeping in mind that we do not generally like the idea of panels that use strictly LED’s, we would recommend one of the following solutions based on our own personal research and experience:
1. First and foremost, our favorite near-infrared light therapy incandescent bulbs and the ones we use ourselves both in a portable lamp and in our SaunaRay self designed conversion kit is the premium Grade A -120V for US RubyLux NIR-A Near Infrared Bulb.
We use this particular bulb because in our opinion it is one of the cleanest and safest brands on the market today. It also carries a great price point, so don’t be fooled by other companies trying to sell you the same quality for almost 3-4 times the cost or a heating lamp bulb that gives off a majority of only far-infrared heat. These bulbs can also be used in most near-infrared sauna systems which are made for incandescent bulbs or in a cheap, portable, heat-resistant, clamp lamp rated at 250 Watts or more like this one HERE. There is also the option of something like this that allows for multiple bulb connections to create your very own near-infrared/red light therapy sauna, we would just replace the bulbs with a set of RubyLux bulbs. Whichever one you decide to use please be sure to use a surge protector and be wary that the lamp that you do choose does not give off a ton of magnetic fields.
At some point, Kevin and I may even do a video on how to make your very own EMF proofed and shielded cable lamps for in-home use using a RubyLux bulb. RubyLux bulbs do not emit any ELF’s, very little dirty electricity and do not emit any EMF’s in the range that EMF experts believe to be harmful.
2. However, if you are concerned about the small amount of EMFs that are emitted from the RubyLux bulbs or would prefer a pre-made near-infrared sauna or panel that we have heard great things about, you may want to take a look at a Saunaspace system.
However, many will argue that while most incandescent bulbs will not provide true red light therapy which is an energy output within a 600-660 nm range which is true, they will also argue that many incandescent bulbs only offer a very small amount of the therapeutic wavelengths of near-infrared energy as well in 810-880 nm range. (6) Again, while this may be true all we have to say to that is when does the sun or nature ever provide us with a small range of therapeutic light?
This is why Kevin and I are not very fond of laser lights or panels that use a large amount of LED red light-emitting diodes because nature will never produce singular wavelengths of light or frequencies. Therefore, our motto has always been to work with nature rather than try to biohack (7) nature which we suspect in time may have some unfortunate consequences for those who think they are above the original creator. While incandescent bulbs are not exactly a direct replica of how light works, again we believe the Photon Genius does it right by incorporating the full spectrum of non-visible light as well as producing visible light using plasma and noble gases, an incandescent bulb is still closer to how nature produces light in our opinion in comparison to LED's. Again, while this may not be a fully scientific reason for choosing a system that uses incandescent bulbs over an LED's, it is what has worked for us and where our intuition has lead us. Who knows, we are constantly learning and open to new ideas which is why we believe we have been so successful with reversing our health conditions. Therefore, what we know today can easily change tomorrow. That's the beauty of living life in the moment and staying humble to the idea that every day is a new opportunity to learn something new!
However, choosing a Saunaspace will come with a hefty price tag which will not be affordable for everyone. We also have direct experience with RubyLux bulbs and believe them to be a superior product as well at a fraction of the cost. We’re not just saying this because we are working toward becoming an affiliate for RubyLux bulbs but because RubyLux has gone through rigorous testing to ensure that their bulbs do not emit any UV light, Teflon, fluorinated fumes, mercury vapor, or any other toxic substances. They are CE certified and have been labeled one of the safest brands on the market! We also stand behind the Founder and CEO of RubyLux, Bambi Iversen because we could relate to her personal health story and battle with Lyme Disease, as well as her ambition and drive to bring the safest and most affordable light therapy to all of those who struggle with chronic pain or illnesses.
So what can a RubyLux near-infrared system do for you, here is a quick video which goes through each of its potential health benefits:
Top 10 Uses for RubyLux Near Infrared Bulb
Just because Kevin and I are not fully convinced by light therapies that use LED’s that’s not to say we haven’t also heard some amazing things about some of these light panel systems. In which case, if you don't want to fully commit to an expensive RLT panel but would like to give it a try, RubyLux also offers a wide range of LED light therapy bulbs at some more affordable prices. What makes RubyLux LED bulbs unique is that they have been engineered as a bulb to screw into virtually any US/Canadian lamp or light socket.
If you should have any further questions or need help trying to create an in-home system, please don’t hesitate to leave us a comment down below or to send us a quick email and we would be more than happy to try to help.
Everyone’s healing journey is different so the best advice we could offer you on this particular subject is to do your own research, trust your gut and follow your heart. You’ll never know what does and doesn’t work for you unless you’re willing to take some risks and try something new.
If you have prolonged experience with red light/near-infrared or even other light therapies with some success, we would love to hear about your experience in the comments down below. To us, life isn’t a competition about who is better, it’s about realizing that if we can all put aside our differences, we could all be great again and heal this world together!
May 2020 bring you love, happiness, and health!
Jessica & Kevin
The Healing Hands Duo ❤️ ❤️ ❤️
Regardless of what some say about not needing to wear eye protection with red light/near-infrared panels or bulbs we would suggest always rearing on the side of caution and ensuring that you use the appropriate eye protection when using any RubyLux products if these lights will be shining in the direction of your eyes. We also recommend that you use and read the instructions that come along with all RubyLux products to prevent any damages or injuries.
Some of these links point to other websites or sections of this website that I currently manage or affiliate links where I'll earn a small commission if you should make a purchase. Shopping through these links is a great way to support us so that we can continue to provide you with as much free content as possible. However, we will never steer you in the wrong direction or to a product that we do not believe in or haven't tried ourselves just to make a few dollars. At the time that this blog post was written, this was the best information we had collected over the years to our knowledge. We wish you all the best and thank you for taking the time to read our blog posts! These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration or Health Canada. Our products/services are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
1. Healthline, Red Light Therapy Benefits, n.d., Retrieved from: https://www.healthline.com/health/red-light-therapy
2. BenGreenfieldFitness, What's The Deal With Fancy Red Light Devices, n.d., Retrieved from: https://bengreenfieldfitness.com/article/biohacking-articles/red-light-therapy-benefits/
3. Environment, Health & Safty, Light & Infrared Radiation, 2018, Retrieved from: https://ehs.lbl.gov/resource/documents/radiation-protection/non-ionizing-radiation/light-and-infrared-radiation/
4. Noel Kirkpatrick, Why Blue Light is "Toxic" to your eyes, 2018, Retrieved from: https://www.mnn.com/health/fitness-well-being/stories/blue-light-toxic-to-your-eyes
5. Journal Of Athletic Training, Red Ligh And The Sleep Quality & Endurance Performance of Chinese Female Basketball Players, 2012, Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3499892/
6. Joovv, Scott Nelson, Infrared Heat Lamps Vs LED Light Therapy Devices: Retrieved from: https://joovv.com/blogs/joovv-blog/infrared-heat-lamps-vs-led-photobiomodulation-light-therapy-devices
7. Healthline, Guide To Biohacking, n.d., Retried from: https://www.healthline.com/health/biohacking
8. RubyLux Lights, Top 10 Uses For RubyLux Near Infrared Bulb, 2019: Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFNzvsorkyY