This article was originally published in MindBodyGreen, but I just had to personally share it with you.
Lately, I’ve really been working on managing my stress in healthy ways. I like yoga, reading, and long walks, but I needed other simple techniques. Honestly, the hardest part of self-care, is prioritizing time for it. However, if you find something you enjoy that you feel really helps, then I think you’ll make time for it. That’s exactly what I’ve found with Epsom salt baths. Let me just preface this with the fact that I am NOT a bath person. I have never liked taking baths; I have always preferred showers. So, when I started learning about the benefits of Epsom salt baths, I was intrigued but not convinced. It actually took me well over a year to give it a try, and I am so glad I finally did!
Epsom salt is a naturally occurring mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate, both of which are highly absorbable through the skin. Magnesium plays a number of key roles in the body including reducing inflammation, helping nerve and muscle function and preventing the clogging of arteries. Sulfates help with the absorption of nutrients, easing migraines, and flushing toxins. They also help strengthen the walls of the digestive tract.
Below are a few key benefits that Epsom salt baths can provide:
Eases Stress and Promotes Relaxation
Stress drains the body of magnesium, and given that most of us are under chronic stress, our bodies are magnesium deficient. In fact, 68% of adults in the U.S. consume less than the recommended daily allowance of magnesium. When Epsom salt is dissolved in warm water, the magnesium is absorbed through the skin to help replenish magnesium levels in the body. Magnesium helps promote a feeling of calm and relaxation. It also increases energy and reduces irritability. Epsom salt baths can help improve your sleep and concentration.
Helps You Detox
Epsom salt baths are a great way to detoxify your body. The sulfates in Epsom salt flush toxins and heavy metals from the cells helping the body eliminate these substances.
Eases Muscle Pain and Improves Function
Epsom salt baths can reduce inflammation and ease pain, which makes it a great treatment for sore muscles and migraine headaches. It’s also shown to help regulate electrolytes in the body, which helps with the functioning of nerves, muscles, and enzymes.
Softens and Smooths Your Skin
If you have dry, itchy skin or a more serious condition like eczema or psoriasis, Epsom salt baths can help. The mineral-rich bath water can help soften, smooth and soothe skin. Enjoying Epsom salt baths regularly can help keep skin soft and prevent wrinkles. Just remember to rinse off any salt that might be left on the skin and apply a moisturizer afterward. You can also add your own moisturizing oils and essential oils to your Epsom salt bath for extra benefit.
The great thing is that you don’t have to devote a lot of time to this practice. You can reap the benefits of an Epsom salt bath in as little as 10 minutes. I usually soak for about 30 minutes and have relaxing music playing in the background. Just fill your tub with warm water and add ½-2 cups of Epsom salt. The more salt you add, the more detoxifying it will be, so you may want to start small and work your way up.
If you’ve never indulged in an Epsom salt bath, I encourage you to go to your local health food store or drug store, buy some Epsom salt, and give it a try. It’s an efficient and inexpensive way to relieve stress and improve your health.
I would love to hear your thoughts. Have you tried epsom salt baths before? If not, do you think you’ll give it a try? What are your favorite ways to relax and de-stress? Share in the comments below!