Epsom Salt Bath

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Detox Your Body With Epsom Salt Bath

People take Epsom salt baths for many reasons: They can help to relieve stress, soothe your muscles, soften your skin and maybe even reduce the look of wrinkles. Some recent studies have even indicated that Epsom salt baths may be soothing for children with autism.

Epsom salts are made up of the compound magnesium sulfate, and they got their name because one of the earliest discoveries of magnesium sulfate took place in Epsom, England. Magnesium and sulfate both play essential parts in the ways in which our bodies function.

Magnesium is important in that it helps keep enzyme activity regular in your body, and it helps your bodily functions to run smoothly. More than half of all Americans have a magnesium deficiency, which is believed to be a factor in all kinds of health problems [source: Epsom Salt Council]. Sulfate also plays an important role in the way in which your body works: It has a role in the formation of brain tissue and joint proteins, and it can strengthen the walls of the digestive tract [source: Epsom Salt Council].

Taking an Epsom salt bath helps restore magnesium and sulfate in your system because they can be absorbed through your skin. Some doctors recommend soaking three times per week for about 12 to 15 minutes. If you’re wondering where to find Epsom salt, just check out your local grocery store, health food store or pharmacy.

Dry, itchy skin is a common skin care concern for people of any age, and Epsom salt can help.

Mineral-rich Epsom salt bathwater can help turn rough, dry skin into smooth, soft skin, especially if you use partially dissolved salt crystals to exfoliate dead skin cells and rough spots away [source: Epsom Salt Council]. Epsom salt baths also can be a soothing at-home treatment for serious skin conditions, such as psoriasis or eczema. Of course, if you do have any chronic skin conditions, you might want to consult your physician before sitting down for a soak.

Taking Epsom salt baths regularly may help keep your skin soft, but the key is to remember to rinse away any salt that is left on your skin after your bath. To keep your skin moisturized, use warm water in the tub and limit your time in the water — too much water or heat can take away moisturizing oils from your skin. Within three minutes of getting out of the bath or shower, pat your skin dry and apply a Young Living moisturizer (click here) within three minutes of getting out of the bath or shower to lock in water and prevent it from evaporating and taking your skin’s natural oils along with it.

As Epsom salt can help to soften your skin, it can also help if you need to hide wrinkles on your skin.

Magnesium sulfate, the chemical compound that makes up Epsom salt is a very versatile tool — not only can it help you with your skin care routine, some say it can also help you detoxify your body. Proponents claim that Epsom salt baths are a great way to get out lots of harmful and unnatural substances that you don’t want in your system.

Magnesium helps keep your bodily functions running smoothly, including some of the pathways that lead toxins right out of your body. Sulfate helps to strengthen the walls of your digestive tract so that it’s easier to release toxins. As a compound, magnesium sulfate also raises the amount of digestive enzymes in the pancreas. The compound also helps in purifying and detoxifying your body of heavy metals [source: Epsom Salt Council]. All of these functions help to aid the body in getting rid of toxins. However, there’s not a lot of medical research documenting how much of a detoxifying effect Epsom salt may really have.

If you’re ready for an Epsom salt bath, consider your tub size and water depth before you begin pouring in the salt. More salt isn’t necessarily better. A common formula is to add a cup or two (about 0.25 or 0.5 liters) of Epsom salt to warm water in a standard-size bathtub. If your bathtub is bigger or smaller than most, you may want to adjust the amount of Epsom salt you add [source: Epsom Salt Council].

If you’re a lover of hot, steaming bath water, know that it’s not doing your skin any favors. The water you use in an Epsom salt bath — and any bath, for that matter — should be warm, not hot. Warm or tepid water is best for your skin because it doesn’t strip away as much protective oil, and it helps to dissolve the Epsom salt. Before you climb into the bath, make sure that all of the salt has dissolved so that it can be more easily absorbed into your skin. Any salt that hasn’t dissolved in the water may dry on your skin as an opaque white powder. If you see this residue on your skin after the bath, don’t worry; excess salt should be harmless and is easily rinsed off.

Despite the benefits, Epsom salt baths aren’t for everyone. They generally aren’t recommended for people who have conditions such as heart problems, high blood pressure or diabetes. If you aren’t sure whether an Epsom salt bath is safe for you, consult your doctor first.

Epsom salt has been a cure-all for generations: It has been used to soothe aches and pains, and more recently for softening skin, preventing wrinkles and detoxifying your body.

Below is another option for a “Detox Bath” using Epsom Salt

Detoxification of your body through bathing is an ancient remedy that anyone can perform in the comfort of their own home. In detoxification circles, your skin is known as the third kidney, and toxins are excreted through sweating. A detox bath is thought to assist your body in eliminating toxins as well as absorbing the minerals and nutrients that are in the water. Most of all, it’ll leave you feeling refreshed and awakened.

  1. Prepare your bath on a day that you have at least 40 minutes available. The first 20 minutes are said to help your body remove the toxins, while the second 20 minutes are for absorbing the minerals in the water.
  2. Fill your tub with comfortable warm water. Use a chlorine filter if possible.
  3. Add Epsom salts (aka magnesium sulfate). Soaking in Epsom salts actually helps replenish the body magnesium level, combating hypertension. The sulfate flushes toxins and helps form proteins in brain tissue and joints.  Epsom salt is very inexpensive. It can be purchased in decently sized bags or cartons at discount stores in the garden center or pharmaceutical area. Very large bags can be ordered from garden centers. For children under 60 lbs, add 1/2 cup to a standard bath. For children 60 lbs to 100 lbs, add 1 cup to a standard bath. For people 100 lbs and up, add 2 cups or more to a standard bath.
  4. Add 1 to 2 cups or more of baking soda (a.k.a. sodium bicarbonate). Baking soda is known for its cleansing ability and even has anti-fungal properties. It also leaves skin very soft. Large bags can usually be found in the swimming pool chemical area, but the boxes from the bakery aisle will work fine.
  5. Add ground ginger or fresh ginger tea. While this step is optional, ginger can increase your heat levels, helping to sweat out toxins. However, since it is heating to the body, it may cause your skin to turn slightly red for a few minutes, so be careful with the amount you add. Depending on the capacity of your tub, and your sensitivity, anywhere from 1 tablespoon to 1/3 cup can be added. Most people sweat profusely with the addition of the ginger, and if you wrap your body in a blanket immediately after getting out of the tub, you can continue to detoxify through perspiration for another couple of hours. This is especially beneficial if you are trying to get rid the body of a bug of some sort of disease, like the flu, or a cold.
  6. Add Essential oils. Again optional, but many people love the fragrance of such oils and for many, the oils have particular therapeutic properties to take advantage of. There are many Young Living essential oils that will make the bath an even more pleasant and relaxing experience (such as Lavender and Ylang Ylang), as well as those that will assist in the detoxification process (tea tree oil or eucalyptus). Around 20 drops is sufficient for a standard bath.
  7. Swish all of the ingredients around in the tub, then soak. Again, 40 minutes is recommended (the longer the better), but aim for at least 20. You should start sweating within the first few minutes.
  8. Get out of the tub slowly and carefully. Your body has been working hard and you may get lightheaded or feel weak and drained. On top of that, the salts make your tub slippery, so stand with care.
  9. Drink plenty of water. Any time your body detoxes (after this type of bath, a massage, or chiropractic work, for example), you need to flush out toxins. If you don’t, you will likely feel sick afterwards.
  10. After the bath, you might like to rub down your body with a loofah or vegetable bristle brush. This can help to stimulate the lymphatic system, which can aid with the release of toxins.Use long, gentle sweeping strokes aimed toward the heart.

Not only for the physical health benefits, but to take the time to relax with your eyes closed can clear the mind and relax the body. Enjoy!

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