Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Epsom Salt Bath: How To



Being that this week is our natural living "favorite things" week, I thought it would only be fitting that my first post would be about probably my number one favorite thing in the world of natural living: epsom salt baths. I mentioned this in my initial Wednesday interview. This may just be my single favorite natural "supplement" of all time, and if I had to pick just one natural supplement to have for the rest of my life it may just be this one. It was a while ago now that I started doing epsom salt baths. I'm not even sure how I started or when. You see, epsom salts are so amazing because they provide the body with magnesium which is one of the hardest things for our body to retain. Magnesium is best absorbed through the skin actually-- more so than being ingested through the mouth. So doing baths really is one of the best ways to get this rare and much needed mineral into your system. (I also take magnesium internally as well, but I love the bath method the best!) These epsom salt baths have become one of my go-to's for all sorts of ailments, including headaches, anxiety, colds, any kind of infection and/or virus, acne, back pain, trying to loose weight, ridding of toxins, helping sore muscles, fatigue, wound healing, stress, stomach issues, and much more. This has become one of my key favorites in how I take care of my body. I try not to go a week without an epsom salt bath and when I'm fighting off something I will take one of these baths once a day for however long until I feel all the way better. Doing these baths have become one of the highlights of my week. I usually light a candle, put on some music, and take that time to pray and take care of my body. It's delightful and I have seen so many amazing health benefits since doing this simple thing that feels wonderful as well.

Where to find/buy Epsom Salts From: 

I buy mine from Whole Foods, online, and from a co-op. You can find some for very little money (I think it's $3 for a bag) at CVS. I wouldn't hesitate to use those in a pinch, but I prefer other brands when I have that luxury. I buy this brand at whole foods and it's usually $6 for the carton. I also buy these Dead Sea salts that I love as well. What I would not recommend is to buy ones that are scented or perfumed. Many times those have chemicals added, and I stay far away from those. Get the pure, scent-free, unadulterated good stuff and you can add scents and oils to your liking afterward.

HOW TO: 

What you need:
2 cups of Epsom Salts
A Bath Tub (You could use a basin for a foot bath)
A few drops of Essential Oils (This is completely optional. Use only when you have. It's not necessary)

I drink a full cup of water before I begin. Then I draw a bath of hot water. I want it to be hot, because it's best to actually sweat. I then add in two cups of epsom salts and let the salts dissolve. This will also give the water time to cool a bit. When the water feels good to my preference and won't burn my skin while getting in, I add in essential oils (see below). These are not necessary. I have done the bath without essential oils and it is still amazing. After I add the essential oils, I get right in. I soak in the bath for at least 20 minutes. I've heard it said that the first ten minutes are used to get rid of harmful toxins and the second ten minutes are used to restore minerals back into your body. I always make sure to have a glass of water next to the tub if I begin to feel thirsty or need some. I sometimes forget I've been in there and have gone up to 30 minutes before. When you are done rinse off with cooler water and pat or air dry.

*Drink a full cup of water before you start. It's important as you are doing this (just as when you get a massage) to stay hydrated. Get your mason jars out to make absolutely sure that you are drinking an adequate amount of water that day. You never want to cleanse or eliminate toxins if you are not hydrated because your body will not have a way to eliminate those toxins that have been released.* 




Essential Oils & Other Add-In's:

I do not always add anything to my epsom salt baths. As I said, just doing the epsom salts alone works wonders. However, sometimes there will be something specific I am trying to target, so I will add something in. Below are a few options for add in's.

Essential Oils: 

I have come to love essential oils. It took me a while to research every brand out there and I was very thorough in my research. It was very important for me to use a reputable brand and one I could fully trust, use on my body, and recommend to others. I used to by mine at the store without thinking too much about the brand. I highly suggest you doing your research, or ask someone that has. It took me a while to extensively research until I was completely confident in the brand I chose. The last thing you want to do is waste your money on a less than great brand. It's not worth it, trust me. Now that I've found one I love, I especially love adding these to my bath time routine. You can email me if you have any particular questions about essential oils. A good one to start with is always lavender of course. Lavender is of course amazing for stress and any form of anxiety, but also really for any ailment I come across. You can add anywhere from 3-15 drops in your bath. There are all sorts of others that are great for specific issues, so you can email us at PRTLIVING@GMAIL.COM with any specific questions or formulas. A few of my favorite combinations are below: 

Any combination of below oils work well

Common Cold Bath: 
10 drops of lavender
5 drops of peppermint 
2 drops of thyme 
(oregano oil is also great for colds)

Headaches:
13 drops of lavender
4 drops of peppermint
5 drops of lemon

Anti-Inflammation:
8 drops of lavender
5 drops of lemon 
8 drops of tea tree

Sensual Bath: 
(you know you want to try this! why not?!)
5 drops of Cyrpress
5 drops of Sandalwood 
3 drops of Geranium 
(Geranium is also great for fertility)

I mainly do the combinations listed above. However, if I have had a week of sickness or my immune system is really low then I will sometimes add in aluminum-free baking soda, fresh raw ginger, and / or apple cider vinegar to my baths. One time I was out of epsom salts (sad!!) and I just used hot water, baking soda, and essential oils. I would say I used about 3 tbsp. of baking soda (the aluminum free baking soda! It's best to buy that in bulk- much cheaper!). When I have gotten a very bad flu-like cold (which is rare) I will add chopped up fresh ginger to my bath. I use one knob of fresh ginger minced. Every now and then I will also add a tbsp. of apple cider vinegar to my baths just to help my body's PH levels. 

I hope these suggestions are helpful to you! The main point is to RELAX. Even if you buy a $3 bag of Epsom Salt baths from CVS, spend twenty minutes giving to your body, praying, relaxing, and restoring peace within. It will do wonders for your body and heart. We have to take care of ourselves and our bodies and it's definitely a luxury that we are able to do so-- but a luxury we should take full advantage of! 

Enjoy! 


Freshly Minced Ginger For a Ginger Bath



Disclaimer: PRTLIVING (and all of those feature and interviewed) is limited to providing self-help education in natural health matters and advocating of a healthy lifestyle for the sole purpose of sharing personal experiences and historical information about the traditional use of God-given herbs and natural remedies. This information is not intended to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure any specific disease. No medical claims are made. If you have a medical problem, please seek the advice of your medical doctor.

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