Have you heard of red light therapy (RLT)? After learning about the many health benefits, I had to try it and I’ve been consistently using my red light for over 18 months. Without changing much else in my routine, I noticed within a matter of weeks: more energy, more power, better mood, less pain, and improved skin texture. And then when I stopped using it for a couple of weeks I felt the difference, so I’m back at it and wanted to share this information with you.
What is Red Light Therapy?
A red light device is either a box or panel composed of low wavelength red lights. You sit or stand (or lay down) in front of the device allowing skin exposure to the red light for a certain amount of time (about 10 – 30 minutes. The time will vary depending on the size of the device and the desired effect. The red light is warm, not hot, and since red lights aren’t UV lights and don’t damage the eyes, many people read while doing their session.
When I use it for my face, I relax and meditate with my eyes closed, and when I have it aimed on my back, I’ll read or do work.
What Does Red Light Therapy Do?
Red light waves are readily absorbed by mitochondria – the part of our cells that produces energy. When the mitochondria are activated, these cells produce more adenosine triphosphate (ATP) that is the energy source for all cells. Researchers believe that with this extra energy, cells have an improved ability to respond to damage and repair themselves. The effects are localized (in the area) as well as systemic (throughout the whole body). Red light exposure can help to:
- Increase collagen production in the skin
- Increase fibroblast production, which helps produce collagen and other tissue fibers
- Increase circulation between blood and tissue cells (enhances detoxification)
- Increase protection from cellular damage
- Increase mRNA in the cells, which helps stimulate the cell
I can attest to the systemic effects – as doing a local treatment had effects on my whole body. Initially I was only treating my face and upper chest because I wanted to see if it would help with fine lines and sun damage. And after a few months of only treating my upper body and despite not exercising for 6-8 weeks due to an ankle injury, I discovered that upon returning to physical activity I actually had more power and endurance! That totally blew my mind!
What Are Some of the Benefits of Red Light Therapy?
Some of the benefits include:
Improved skin health and wound healing:
- Improved facial texture
- Fine line reduction
- Reduction in wrinkle severity
- Improved complexion/decreased intensity of sun damage spots
- Improved acne
- Accelerated wound healing
- Scar reduction
- Hair growth in alopecia
- Decreased pain from arthritis, tendonitis, and inflammatory processes
- Improved mobility
- Decreased muscle stiffness and spasm
- Muscle/joint recovery after exercise
- Improved exercise tolerance
- Improved sleep quality
- Enhanced sense of well-being
- Improved cognition
The list of health issues that can benefit from RLT continues to grow and includes possible improvement in dementia, recurrent herpes simplex virus infections, psoriasis, hormonal dysregulation, and more…
A great reference book on the subject is “The Ultimate Guide to Red Light Therapy” by Ari Whitten.
How Do I Get Red Light Therapy?
Many local health spas have started to offer full body JOOVV panels where you can experience the benefits of red light therapy. But if you want the convenience of having it in your own home, personal units are available.
The unit I use is a PlatinumLED Bio that combines Red and Near Infrared lights. I have found PlatinumLED to be the highest quality for the most affordable price and they offer several options in different sizes. Please beware of inexpensive “red light” units such as many that are offered on Amazon.com that may not have the proper wavelength and may contain harmful UV light.
PlatinumLED offers high quality, affordable red light therapy units in different sizes. I use my home unit daily and have found it to be an especially beneficial self-care treatment that requires minimal effort.
Light up your life with a red light!