New Research: Stress-Reducing Power of Fire

New Research: Stress-Reducing Power of Fire

A fireplace is a literal game changer for mental and physical health and well-being. No matter the room where one is placed, it immediately becomes the focal point. But it offers so much more than aesthetic value and warmth during cooler autumn evenings.

According to research by two leading research universities — the University of Alabama and the University of Illinois — commissioned by Napoleon, sitting near a fireplace is good for human health and well-being. The Power of Fire studies found sitting near a fireplace helps lower blood pressure and reduce stress, while improving brain function and mental wellness.

“Stress is ever-present, and seeking ways to alleviate the effects of that is conducive to living a fulfilling, healthy lifestyle,” says Garry Scott, vice-president of Marketing at Napoleon. “Many may not have considered how a fireplace can help with this, and how easy it can be to add one — especially an electric one — to the home to create a more calming, relaxing environment.”

Advancement in fireplace technology makes it easy to place a fireplace in any room, in any style of home. Whether a traditional wood-burning fireplace in a century-old brick house, a stylish natural gas fireplace in a suburban townhome or an electric fireplace making a downtown condo cozy, there is a fireplace that can bring all the health and comfort benefits to the home.

This fall, and with October noted as Fireplace Month, Napoleon is launching several new additions to its already extensive lineup of fireplace options:
• Ascent Linear Premium — Add a contemporary and luxurious look with that Ascent Linear gas fireplace. Style it with your choice of hand-painted driftwood, birch, oak logs, or scintillating glass crystals. Further enhance and customize this linear fireplace with gorgeous additional options like beach fire, shore fire, and beautiful mineral rocks.
• Tall Linear Vector — A premium linear gas fireplace that spans 24” in height, making it an impactful addition to large rooms and commercial spaces. Tall flames fill the fireplace for a stunning appearance while maintaining heat output, allowing for a more efficient use of gas. It features a wide selection of ultra-realistic logs or an LED ember bed where any colour imaginable can be selected to match décor, any occasion or any mood.
• Entice — Completely transform your space with a wall-mount Entice electric fireplace. Newly upgraded, the Entice series is a work of art. The sparkling glass ember bed reflects beautiful flames that can be refreshing blue, sunny orange or something in between. Control mood and temperature easily with the included remote control. Protruding only five inches off the wall when hung, or install fully recessed, an Entice electric fireplace is ideal for anywhere a gas fireplace can’t go, adding shine and luxury to a space.
• Astound Electric Built-In Fireplace — Launching in October, the Astound is a built-in electric fireplace featuring a never-before-seen design. Consumers can easily open the front glass to add and change the media/décor based on their unique style, special occasion or season. Including realistic elements like flames that spark and authentic logs/media. It is easy to install in any space as venting and gas lines are not required.
• Altitude X — A full view, traditional gas fireplace, the Altitude X has been upgraded to offer a more premium experience – improved design, flames and logs. Featuring extensive design customization with a collection of realistic logs, brick panels, trims to choose from. It can also be conveniently controlled with the eFIRE mobile app.
• Altitude — The newly upgraded Altitude is designed for visual pleasure. It is a traditional-style fireplace with a multitude of customizable options. Installation is easy and the clean-faced design provides expansive views of the firebox without obstruction. The hand-painted, split oak log set comes standard, plus a variety of optional decorative brick panels.

Between September 14th and November 15th, consumers purchasing a qualifying gas or electric fireplace can save up to $750. With this Power of Fire promotion, Napoleon is helping to “Spread the Health” by donating $25 to Heart and Stroke for each fireplace sold (Canadian purchases only).

The Power Of Fire
The Power of Fire studies were conducted in the fall of 2022. The University of Alabama tested whether an electric fireplace could induce physical relaxation. To establish an electric fireplace as an effective tool for relaxation, 226 unassuming adults were asked to spend 15 minutes in two different rooms. The rooms were exactly the same with one exception: an electric fireplace. Participants wore a simple heart rate monitor and pre- and post-test blood pressures were compared.

The study found that 15 minutes in front of a fireplace can significantly decrease both heart rate and blood pressure. The results indicate that a fireplace could be used as an effective in-home amenity to combat feelings of stress, which can lead to enhanced well-being and improved health.

The University of Illinois tested the effects of an electric fireplace on wellbeing by creating environments that bolster enrichment seeking in adults aged 50 or older. Sixty adults played a game in high pressure/no pressure conditions with and without a fireplace.

Participants in the room with a fireplace saw a 12 per cent improvement in cognitive ability (as measured by game performance) and their adaptivity to enrichment seeking increased. The results provide evidence that adding a fireplace to a home environment nurtures curiosity and openness to new ideas, thereby supporting health and wellbeing as people age.