Relief from Pain and Stress with Epsom Salt Baths – Top 5 Benefits
Epsom salt gets its name from a saline spring in the town of Epsom in Surrey, England. In the late 1600s Epsom became known as a spa town after the influx of visitors coming to experience the (primary laxative) benefits of the salt. Crucially, Epsom salt is a mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate, and with its pain-relieving, blood sugar regulating, stress-reducing benefits, it has very little in common with the iodized refined unmentionables sitting on your dining room table. (You may want to consider getting rid of that by the way, and replacing it with a high-quality unrefined sea salt.)
TOP 5 BENEFITS OF EPSOM SALT BATHS
1. Reduce Stress and Promote Restful Sleep
Simply hopping in a nice warm bath before bed can stimulate blood circulation and the nervous system. But if you want to take the calming effects of a hot bath to the next level, you need to add some more ingredients. Epsom salt helps your body produce serotonin – an important neurotransmitter in calming anxiety and promoting a general feeling of well being.
Additionally, the magnesium sulfate in the salt has a calming effect on the body. It’s no wonder magnesium has been called the original “chill pill”. Take your bath before bed with some chamomile tea and relaxing music for maximum effect. You can even add essential oils to your bath like lavender for added benefits.
2. Detox from Harmful Toxins
Epsom salt baths are often included in detox protocols for their ability to draw out toxins from the body. In the age that we live in our bodies are being constantly bombarded with harmful toxins and being depleted of essential minerals. Epsom salt baths can increase depleted magnesium levels and the sulfates in the salt assist the body in flushing out toxins.
This is why it’s often recommended not to take an Epsom salt bath for more than twenty minutes – you definitely don’t want to absorb those nasty toxins back into the skin. It’s also important to stay hydrated as the process of reverse osmosis will pull salt through the skin. Make sure to drink plenty of waterbefore and after your bath.
3. Relief from Aches, Migraines, and Inflammation.
Inflammation in joints and muscles is the leading cause of the majority of pain experienced in the body. Inflammation is also one of the main contributors to migraines. Epsom salt baths have been shown to lower inflammation, relieving pain and reducing swelling muscles. Epsom salt can even heal cuts and wounds in the skin. (Just ask martin…)
4. Keeps Your Heart Healthy
Epsom salt baths can prevent blood clots, reduce irregular heartbeats, and reduce blood clotting. The high magnesium levels in the salt can boost the body’s natural management of insulin and regulate blood sugar. If you do have heart disease, be sure to consult with your doctor or health consultant before beginning a regimen of Epsom salt baths.
5. Effective Way to Increase Magnesium Intake
Most of the wonderful benefits of Epsom salt discussed here come from the magnesium contained in the salt. Magnesium is actually the second most abundant element in human cells and is critical to overall health. The US National Institute of Health states:
“ Magnesium is a nutrient that the body needs to stay healthy. Magnesiumis important for many processes in the body, including regulating muscle and nerve function, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure and making protein, bone, and DNA”
Unfortunately, its often depleted by both today’s high sugar and processed food diet, as well as today’s fast-paced stress-inducing lifestyle. Oral magnesium supplementation has been shown to be difficult for the body to absorb. In addition, the laxative effects of oral magnesium prevent you from getting the higher levels of magnesium you may need.
Taking magnesium transdermally through the skin – like in an Epsom salt bath – is usually the preferred option. If your goal is purely magnesium supplementation, the most effective method is applying magnesium oil directly to the skin.