Epsom Salts... and relax!
I have always been partial to a lovely bath. I think that it tracks back to being a child and not having a shower in my house until I was in my teens. I can still remember my grandmother putting me in the bath as a baby and covering me with love and giggly tickles as the rest of the family were spectator to my show. Being piscean, water has always been one of my attractions and comforts, and as I grew older I learned to enjoy a bath at the end of my day as a treat and to wind down from the chaotic jobs that I had. I didn't have a bath every night, as I normally find that a shower is way more convenient, environmentally friendly, and quick. Yet you just can't beat a bath! As part of my Naturopathic Nutrition training, I was asked to try and review 3 different naturopathic techniques and amongst the ones that we covered I was very interested to try the Epsom Salts. I have a page that details more about what the salts are and how to use them (click here to read), but here I wanted to just describe my experience. I bought my Epsom Salts online, certainly the best way to get good quality salt without being ripped off - I checked some of the prices on the high street and they are totally shocking! I was very impatient to try them the moment that they arrived, but with two young and very busy boys and 3 dogs - Jack Russells that will bark at any noise - I though that it was best to leave it until the evening. Once the boys were asleep and the dogs loving some cuddles from my husband, I darted for my bathroom armed with salts, a bottle of water, and a book on the five elements of Chinese medicine. After getting the right temperature for the gallons of water pouring into the tub, I opened my first bag of Epsom Salt and took a good look at the packaging, the salt itself, and its texture. Next, I had a good sniff, but no particular smell hit me. Finally, I could not resist having a test of one of the grains, which look very much like rock salt, but believe me, taste nothing like it! I immediately had to wipe my tongue as the salt is extremely bitter and disgusting - to my tastebuds anyway! - then proceeded to add the whole kilo bag to the water. At last, I was ready for my first Epsom Salt bath. I slowly and gradually lowered my body into the water, allowing my body to get used to the temperature and all the while scrutinising whether my senses would pick up on anything different. I then rested a little while under the light of the chandelier that dangles on top of my bath and decided to pick up my book and do some reading. An Epsom bath should last around 40 minutes: the first 20 for the body to release its toxins, and 20 minutes for the body to absorb Magnesium from the salt. I was very conscious to make sure that most of my body was covered by the water for the first part, but I particularly focused on my feet, as the body releases toxins from the top to bottom and inside-out. Whilst for the absorbtion part I was more conscious to ensure that my core was submerged and even made sure to hold my breath and put my head under the water to ensure that the minerals were getting into my whole body. For the last 10 minutes, I actually had to put my book down as I felt so relaxed that I was going cross-eyed and could no longer read without going over the same line again and again. The bath has to be repeated 3 consecutive nights and the experience has been very similar on all of them. After the bath, once I cooled down and dried myself ready for bed, it didn't take me long at all to fall asleep. On the course, I learned that Magnesium can really help out the body in getting a deeper and better sleep: on the first night, my husband had to wake me up in the middle of the night because I was snoring really loud (the loudest I have ever snored since being together apparently!). The second and third night was apparently a very similar experience for my poor spectator, but for myself I can definitely say that I had very deep and relaxed sleeps all 3 nights. Something that I am not accustomed to as I have often suffered with insomnia and always been a light sleeper. Besides the deep sleep, I have also benefited from the release of an ache in my shoulder that had been playing up over the last few days - which has suddenly disappeared. Although I still have to evaluate whether the Magnesium has also helped my cells health, my hydration and a better flow of my C'Hi in the longer term, I can certainly state that it has helped my relaxation and also my mindfulness - allowing myself to live in the moment of healing and soothing naturopathic experience.