My friend and I joined a gym a couple of weeks ago and we were curious as to what the benefits of staying in the sauna or steam room were.
According to Wikipedia.org,
Studies showed that the steam room helped with Bronchial asthma,bronchitis, catarrh of the upper respiratory tract, coughs, hoarseness, expectoration, non-acute rheumatic complaints and restricted or painful movements of the joints. The steam room is also beneficial for people suffering from sleeping disorders, poor skin circulation, dry, chapped skin, muscular tension, muscular weakness in the subcutaneous blood vessels, and sensitivity to sudden changes of temperature.
Sauna may provide some relief to patients with asthma and chronic bronchitis, and may also alleviate pain and improve joint mobility in patients with rheumatic disease. The sauna does not cause drying of the skin, and may even benefit patients with psoriasis, although sweating may increase itching in patients with atopic dermatitis.
It increases performance in endurance sport, increases plasma volume and red cell volume in athletes, decreased systolic blood pressure, significantly improved exercise tolerance, increased peak respiratory oxygen uptake, and enhanced anaerobic threshold in chronic conditions.
Sauna has also been found to reduce levels of stress hormones adrenalin and noradrenalin and to increase levels of ACTH, cortisol and beta endorphin. Sauna has been found to increase the hormone testosterone in men. Sauna also found to reduce prostaglandin F2alpha and protect against oxidative stress.
As for hot tubs (incorrectly named, Jacuzzi), I could not find any health benefits:
Hot tubs can be dangerous to the health under some circumstances. Studies show that usage may increase miscarriage risk in pregnant women. Also, studies show that usage may hurt male fertility.
Okie dokie :/