Sunday, September 8, 2013

lessons from my homeopath | bath salts

This begins a series of lessons/notes in my journey to better well being by visiting a homoeopath. Homoeopathy considers the totality of the patient's symptoms, personal traits, physical and psychological state, and life history. 

One of the first lessons I learnt (I've been going regularly for a few months) is about epsom bath salts. I knew that Epsom salts were good for aching muscles. My Mum told me this when I was little. For years I’ve been known to have a soak after a hard day in the garden or coming down with the flu and feel much better or at least relaxed enough to go to sleep. But what my Mum didn't know is what Epsom salts are - magnesium sulphate*- and the benefits of them. Not only are they a beautiful way to relax, but they increase circulation and increase magnesium levels. 

Baths can be wonderfully healing, cleansing as well as relaxing, refreshing, and/or awakening even without the addition of anything special in the water. The hot water draws toxins out of the body to the skin’s surface, and while the water cools it pulls toxins from the skin. The warmer the water, the more powerful the detox effect will be. 

Adding a bath salt augments this detoxification by causing you to sweat. A soak in bath salts assists your body in eliminating toxins as well as absorbing the minerals and nutrients that are in the water. Minerals and salts make the bath water feel silky and leave your skin cleansed and soft.

-    Common Ingredients:
  • Epsom Salts (or magnesium sulphate) helps replenish the body’s magnesium levels, combating hypertension. The magnesium is absorbed into the blood stream in a form which can be used straight away. The sulphate flushes toxins and helps form proteins in brain tissue and joints. You can use a couple of tablespoons or up to a cup per bath if you are requiring the therapeutic effect of magnesium.
  • Rock Salt  (or sodium chloride) naturally harvested sea salt contains minerals, helps draw toxins from the skin and soothes sore muscles. It is visually striking because it is chunky. If you have the budget you could use Himalayan Pink Salt as the mineral composition is greater than rock salt.
  • Baking Soda is known for its cleansing ability and even has anti-fungal properties. It leaves skin very soft.
  • Aromatherapy Oils are optional, but they smell divine and they have particular therapeutic properties to take advantage of. Examples include lavender for relaxing, tea tree for cleansing, ylang ylang and rose for stimulating/romancing. 
  • Ginger can be either ground ginger or ginger infused tea. Ginger can increase your heat levels, helping to sweat out those toxins. 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 of a 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 beneficial if you are trying to rid the body of a bug of some sort, like the flu, or a cold.
Epsom Salts can be found in the beauty isle (often beside the soaps) in most supermarkets. Different rock salt's can be found at the supermarket too. I found getting ingredients from Moore Wilsons and Bin Inn cost effective. I did try to check the ethical, fair trade type issues but it was difficult to tell. 


Soaking do’s and don’ts
  • Some information on the web recommended that you make the first time you soak with Bath Salts 5-10 minutes due to the health risks of feeling dizzy. Other information warned about taking hot baths and salt baths if you have heart trouble, high blood pressure, or are diabetic. I found one site saying don’t take baths while home alone but most of you reading this are Mum’s so that’s exactly when we’d want to relax in a bath. Just use your common sense.
  • 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.
  • Any time your body detox’s you flush out toxins so drinking lots of water is needed.
  • These baths tend to make you tired so ideally have them before bed. 
  • After the bath 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.
To use as an exfoliator
Mix 2 tablespoons of bath salt with a handful of your body wash. Gently massage mixture onto skin to slough away dry patches, revelling in a healthier looking complexion.

Recipe - New Product
Sorry I'm not going to share the recipes I found as since it’s pretty easy to make (sh don’t tell) and looks nice in glass jars it’s a green life's newest product. Available at the moment is a relax and detox blend. They can be purchased on the a green life face book page and at upcoming Spring Markets.

* Actually I used to know this I discovered while going through my 6th form Chemistry notes last weekend as one does.  

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