Epsom bath salts have been used for hundreds of years and sometimes the old-fashioned remedies are the best! I used to spend a fortune on Epsom Salts until I discovered my local Mrs Flannerys sells magnesium salts in the bulk food section and now I pay less than half of what I used to pay at the supermarket.  Less than half! How good is that? It leaves me more money to indulge in food from Mrs Flannerys!

Magnesium is so important to the body.  It is absolutely essential to every cell in our body! It really is that important. I love nothing more than a soak in the bath with a cup of magnesium salts and some essential oil (the oil I use will depend on the mood that I am in – for example, if I am feeling stressed, I will add lavender oil). Because our soil is so depleted these days, many people suffer from magnesium deficiencies and don’t even realise that some of the symptoms that they are feeling is related to their poor intake of magnesium. One of my relatives had suffered for years from restless leg syndrome and I happened to notice one evening when he was visiting, and mentioned to him that he likely had a magnesium deficiency. Within forty-eight hours of putting him on a good quality supplement, his restless leg syndrome disappeared for the first time and he was amazed as he had seen so many doctors about it. Please note, however, that magnesium is best absorbed through the skin, so supplements will only work for certain conditions.

Other symptoms of magnesium deficiency include osteoporosis, muscle cramps, exhaustion, fluid retention, diabetes, asthma, muscle tremors or tics, nausea and loss of appetite. Magnesium also plays a very important function in good heart health. Where possible, it is always best to get magnesium from our foods but unless you are buying organic food, it is becoming increasingly hard to get enough magnesium from our foods. Good sources of magnesium include all leafy green vegetables, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, bananas and brown rice.

I make my own magnesium oil and I will write another blog about how to do this and the benefits of having a bottle of this on hand.

I am going to focus on the reasons why you should make regular soaks in the bath with magnesium salts a part of your normal routine. Not only is it heavenly and soooooo relaxing, there are wonderful health benefits as well. Because magnesium is so important in regulating over 325 enzymes in our bodies and because it is so easily absorbed through the skin, a regular soak helps to easy internal inflammation as well as helps improve muscle and nerve function. It also helps to flush out toxins and I really recommend that you include magnesium bath soaks when you are doing a detox to help with the detox process. I use magnesium salts with a number of clients who are either going through a detox process or who need to eliminate harmful substances such as heavy metals from their bodies. Magnesium salts contain a lot of sulphates and these will flush out the toxins and heavy metals from the cells. These sulphates also play a vital role in overall body function, particularly in the formation of brain tissue and the proteins that line the digestive tract. They help to stimulate the pancreas to generate good healthy digestive enzymes so that the nutrients from our food is absorbed.    That’s right – soaking in the bath can actually help you with maintaining a healthy diet!

If you have ever done a rigorous workout or worked too hard in the garden, you would already know, that soaking in a bath with Epsom or magnesium salts, helps to relax the muscles and ease the tension. It’s also a great idea to have a good soak in the bath with magnesium salts if you have some cuts on your skin as the magnesium will help to heal the cuts.  For particularly bad cuts, make a paste with water and magnesium salts and apply to the cut and leave for 20 – 30 minutes before washing off.

As mentioned at the beginning of my blog, I like to unwind in warm bath with magnesium salts and essential lavender oil. Often when we are stressed, our body produces more adrenalin in order to cope with the stress. The magnesium will increase the serotonin (the feel-good chemical) which helps the body and mind to relax. The magnesium ions will also help the brain to unwind as well as decrease the effects of adrenalin.

Another important reason to include regular magnesium bath soaks in your routine, is that as they regulate over 325 enzymes in our body, they will also regulate the electrolytes which will assist in achieving good muscle and nerve function.

I’ve written previously on why you shouldn’t use commercial soaps on your skin, so if you want a nice relaxing and moisturising bath, combine one cup of magnesium salts, ½ cup of coconut oil and 6 drops of lavender oil in a bath and soak for 30 minutes.

I’ve shared this recipe for a soothing foot soak with my mother who loves nothing better than a good foot soak at the end of a long week. Add ½ cup of magnesium salts and 6 drops of essential peppermint oil to a tub of warm water and soak your feet for 20 minutes. If your feet have a lot of hard skin or are dry, at the end of your soak, slather on some coconut oil and pop a pair of socks on and leave overnight.

On a last note, many people are aware that the body needs both calcium and magnesium for good bone health. Many modern supplements combine the two – AND THEREIN LIES THE PROBLEM!!!!   If the balance is not correct, the body will not absorb either properly. Now don’t forget, I told you earlier that magnesium is generally BEST absorbed through the skin and so taking a supplement is often useless as the digestive tract can not easily process magnesium. I only ever recommend one particular type of magnesium supplement and even then, it is only in certain cases that I will recommend a supplement. Calcium supplements decreases the body’s ability to absorb magnesium BUT the body can’t absorb calcium without the correct balance of magnesium and so more often than not, taking a supplement is both useless and counterproductive because without the right balance, a supplement will actually DECREASE the body’s ability to absorb both nutrients.  I personally never recommend calcium supplements to clients for this reason as well as other reasons.

So what are you waiting for? Go and fill that tub, throw in some magnesium salts and have a good soak!

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