In my blog Signs of Magnesium Deficiency & What You Can Do About It, I discussed how important magnesium is when it comes to your health.
Magnesium plays a number of roles in the body, such as regulating the activity of over 325 enzymes, reducing inflammation, helping muscle and nerve function and helping to prevent artery hardening. Unfortunately there are many things that can deplete the body’s stores of magnesium including:
- Overuse of medications and antibiotics;
- Consumption of processed and refined foods; and
- The depletion of minerals like magnesium in our soils.
This is why I’m a huge advocate of Epsom salt baths, as they can play an important part in improving our magnesium stores and overall health.
What is Epsom salt?
Epsom salt is composed of tiny, colourless crystals that look a lot like table salt. However, Epsom salt is very different from traditional table salt because it’s actually a mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate (this is why Epsom salt is also called ‘magnesium sulfate’). Studies have shown that magnesium and sulfate are both readily absorbed through the skin, making Epsom salt baths an easy and ideal way to enjoy the associated health benefits.
What Are the Health Benefits of Using Epsom Salt?
- Relieves pain & muscle cramps
Epsom salt absorbed through the skin helps to relieve muscle tension, cramps, pain and inflammation in the joints. This is why I recommend Epsom salt baths for those who exercise a lot and for those who experience arthritis pain and swelling.
- Eases stress & relaxes the body
When the Epsom salt dissolves in warm water in a bath, it is easily absorbed through the skin. The magnesium ions break apart from Epsom salt molecules and begin to relieve stress by promoting the production of serotonin and reducing the effects of adrenaline.
- Makes insulin more effective
Both magnesium and sulfate help to improve the body’s ability to produce and use insulin. A regular intake of magnesium – either orally (through supplements) or transdermally (through Epsom salt baths) – may help to regulate blood sugar, lowering the risk of diabetes and improving your overall daily energy levels.
- Relieves constipation
Did you know that magnesium is a natural laxative? If you’re constipated, try having an Epsom salt bath each night before bed. Soak in the bathtub for 20 minutes with 1 cup of Epsom salt. If you haven’t seen any improvement with your constipation after having regular Epsom salt baths, then I recommend you read this blog Why You Could Be Constipated & 14 Tips on How to Relieve Constipation Naturally for more tips.
- Eliminates toxins from the body
The sulfates in Epsom salt help to flush toxins and heavy metals from the cells, helping the body to eliminate harmful substances. Try making our Lemon & Ginger Detox Bath Salts or our Lavender Bath Salts.
- Helps to relieve migraines and headaches
In some cases, headaches can be due to a magnesium deficiency. Aim to increase the amount of magnesium rich foods in your diet such as Changing Habits Cacao Melts, dark leafy greens, nuts, seeds, fish such as mackerel, avocado, figs and bananas. We also recommend using a magnesium spray or soaking in magnesium salt baths to begin restoring magnesium levels and helping to relieve migraines and headaches. If these tips don’t help to relieve your headaches or migraines, then read this blog 7 Common Reasons You Could Be Getting Headaches and Home Remedies for Headache & Migraine Relief for more tips.
- Wards off Insomnia
If you often have trouble falling asleep at night, Epsom salt baths (with a few drops of lavender essential oil) can help. They can relax your body, which in turn can relax your mind. Enjoy a 20-minute soak before bed and let go of the stresses of the day.
You can read more about the benefits of Epsom salt baths here.
What Other Uses Does Epsom Salt Have?
If you want to learn more about how else you can use Epsom Salt – from facial washes to growing better veggies and relieving sunburn to using it as a grout cleaner – read this blog, Epsom Salt: 21 Surprising Uses & Benefits for Health, Beauty and Home.