Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Detox Time

For some, the word alone strikes up an uneasy feeling of starvation and deprivation. So let's start small...with something that is easy, relaxing, and only takes 40 minutes of your time. A detox bath. Detox baths have been used for thousands of years to rid the body of toxins and chemicals that may be bogging you down. A detox bath also absorbs minerals and nutrients that are in the water. Best of all, it will leave you feeling awakened and refreshed. So here's what you'll need:

1.) 40 minutes devoted to relaxation. The first 20 minutes of soaking remove the toxins from your body and the next 20 minutes are for absorbing the minerals in the water. Light some soy candles and play a little soothing music. Turn your bathroom into your own personal, private spa.

2.) A bathtub full of comfortably hot water.

3.) Add Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate). Soaking in Epsom salts actually helps replenish the body’s magnesium levels, combating hypertension. The sulfate flushes toxins and helps form proteins in brain tissue and joints. Epsom salt is very inexpensive and can be purchased at grocery stores or pharmacies. Add 2 cups of Epsom salt to your warm water.

4.) Add 1 to 2 cups or more of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). Baking soda is known for its cleansing ability and even has anti-fungal properties. It also leaves skin very soft.

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 rid the body of a bug of some sort, like the flu, or a cold.

6.) Add aromatherapy 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 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. Remember-you are detoxifying!

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 slowly 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. This is a very important step!

10.) Enjoy the benefits! Detox baths have many health benefits:

-Improved heart health and circulation

  • -Improved ability for the body to use insulin, reducing the incidence or severity of diabetes
  • -Flushed toxins and heavy metals from the cells, easing muscle pain and helping the body to eliminate harmful substances
  • -Improved nerve function by electrolyte regulation. Also, calcium is the main conductor for electrical current in the body, and magnesium is necessary to maintain proper calcium levels in the blood.
  • -Relieved stress. Excess adrenaline and stress are believed to drain magnesium, a natural stress reliever, from the body. Magnesium is necessary for the body to bind adequate amounts of serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical within the brain that creates a feeling of well being and relaxation.
  • -Reduced inflation to relieve pain and muscle cramps.
  • -Improved oxygen use.
  • -Improved absorption of nutrients.
  • -Improved formation of joint proteins, brain tissue and mucin proteins.
  • -Prevention or easing of migraine headaches.

  •  Remember: Do not take a hot bath or a detox bath if you are pregnant, or have heart, kidney, or any other health issues. As with any application of essential oils, be aware of the properties of the oils and any contra-indications (things that might bring about harm) for your particular conditions.

    If you are overall healthy and wish to improve your health and detox your body of chemicals and impurities, get soaking!