Do Near Infrared Bulbs Work? Always Stay Skeptical

Recently, we received an email from a concerned customer after he saw this YouTube video and some of its claims gave him pause, especially the part from 1:11 to 1:22.

Sadly, this interviewee’s information in this video is misleading and, in some instances, downright wrong.

Do Near Infrared Bulbs Work

I would urge everyone to remain skeptical about so-called “experts” on YouTube, websites and even popular TV shows. The fact is, some of them are charlatans who secure an interview by tricking or misleading the interviewers.  

In this video interview, her facts were so far off-base that I had to question her education and credentials.

Fortunately, those things are pretty easy to check these days. With only a phone call and a few online searches, this is what we found out.

  • The Academy of Oriental Medicine at Austin denied that she held a master’s degree or “CP-AOBTA” from their school as she claims. Rather, they told us she attended for less than a year and never graduated.

  • She claims to be a “CP-AOBTA”, (a Certified Practitioner- American Organization for Bodywork Therapies of Asia), but the AOBTA does not list her among their members nor her school among their approved education programs.

What we did confirm about her is that she sells high-priced light therapy devices. Of course she has a PR campaign to tell people that low-cost options don’t work!

I only listened to the part of the interview my customer specifically mentioned (1:11 to 1:22), and even in that short segment, there were many statements I found doubtful.

Claim #1: Infrared bulbs produce mid- and far-infrared (1:11).

This is a sweeping assertion that is not true of all infrared bulbs. In fact, I have never seen any data suggesting that an infrared bulb of any variety produces far-infrared. Mid-infrared? Maybe - I’d say that depends on the bulb.

Claim #2: Infrared bulbs produce no more red or infrared light than a household incandescent light bulb (1:12).

She says she demonstrates this with a spectrometer in her Bulletproof Radio talk. I was very curious to see this, because it would be so far away from any data I’ve seen before. When I checked the video’s transcript, I couldn’t find anything about it, though. If anyone out there can find the part where she demonstrates this, send me an email. I would be very interested to see it.

If you have eyes that can see the color red, you can see for yourself that half of this claim is false. A typical household light bulb is white. Most infrared bulbs are red. To say the white bulb produces more red light than the bulb that is red in color…well, anyone can see that’s not the case just by looking at the two side by side.

Claim #3: Mid- and far-infrared have no effect on the mitochondria whatsoever (1:13).

Not according to Harvard researchers. And honestly, they aren’t the only ones with this view. There are many other well-respected scientists who hold this opinion.

Claim #4: Infrared bulb spectrometer readings showing that they do not produce mid- and far-infrared are only showing 1% of the reading (1:13). 

Let’s just do the math on this one. One percent of a spectrometer that shows readings up to 2500 nm would be 25 nm. I think we would all notice it if a graph had such a tiny wavelength range.

And even if we didn’t, what we’d see in this hypothetical graph would be the line continually going up and up and then…off the chart.

Perhaps she’s suggesting that all spectrometer readings of infrared bulbs are altered or fake. That theory doesn’t really seem likely to me, either, though. 

Claim #5: It's "blatantly untrue" that one would get red light from infrared bulbs (1:16).

Even without any specialized equipment, anyone can see that red-colored infrared bulbs put out visible red light. Again, most of us have eyes that can see the color red and we can all see that this is just plain wrong.  

Claim #6: Most of the red color on infrared bulbs is from a "red film" on the front of the bulb (1:17). 

While I cannot speak for every single bulb out there, I can say that I have seen a lot of infrared bulbs and I have never seen or heard of red film coatings. The tint in RubyLux NIR-A Near Infrared Bulbs is actually in the glass. In the case of some of our competitors, the coloring comes from paint on the outside of the glass. Sure, a spray-painted exterior isn’t ideal in my book, but it’s still not a film coating.

Claim #7: Infrared bulbs aren’t very bright (1:18).

In reality, the bulbs are so bright that they require eye protection to be worn. Even then, the light is extremely bright! I think anyone with any experience with infrared bulbs whatsoever would completely agree.

Note: Do not stare into an infrared bulb, please. Contrary to nonsensical claims made by other companies, the light and heat from these bulbs is too intense for the eyes. 

Claim #8: “Light and color are the same thing” (1:18).

No, they are not. Obviously, this is a bit off. Light is electromagnetic radiation, especially in the visible light range. Color is the eye’s perception of various wavelengths of light. Color is how the eye experiences an attribute of light- the wavelength. That isn’t the same thing as light itself.

Claim #9: “Mid- and far-infrared emit heat. Near infrared does not emit any heat at all.”(1:20)

This is simply not true. Even visible light can be associated with heat. Our own sun produces plenty of thermal radiation, or heat, with its ultraviolet, visible light and near infrared.

The bottom line is, always stay skeptical. Do your own research and confirm claims for yourself. There is no substitute for verifiable facts and a healthy dose of skepticism and common sense.

Now that you know more about near infrared light therapy, try it out yourself! In the RubyLux shop, you can find our best-selling near infrared bulbs and more. Just click here to get yours!