Wednesday, October 26, 2011

End Your Day With A Hot Bath

Draw A Hot Bath And...

You may already have everything you need in your medicine chest
and pantry to create a "spa like" experience in your own bath tub.

Soak Away Your Stress

Nothing can relax and soothe like a hot bath at the end of a stressful day. Taking a soak in a hot bath increases the heart rate and lowers blood pressure. When bath salts are included, the minerals not only help relax your muscles, but they also help to release toxins in your system and soothe your skin. And finally, as with the Morning Moment, adding aromatherapy oils to your bath will make for an even more relaxing experience.

Based on a great bath salts recipe that Martha Stewart created (which I can no longer find online), and other research, I have developed my own bath routine. I keep the following items in my bathroom at all times: sea salts, Epsom salts, baking soda, ground oatmeal and essential oils.
    Each ingredient serves a purpose, to help the bath be not only relaxing, but healing as well.
    • Sea Salt ~ the minerals in sea salt are beneficial to the skin and body.  Be sure to acquire coarsely, unbleached salt.  The best sea salts for the bath are Dead Sea Salts and Celtic Sea Salts.
    • Epsom Salts ~ best known for its ability to soothe sore muscles, Epsom salts also draw toxins from the body and regulate the nervous system.  Also known as, magnesium sulfate, the salts are a muscle relaxer and the nervous system regulator. The magnesium also raises serotonin levels which leads to the relaxation of the body and mind.  This lowers blood pressure and counteracts the affects of adrenaline. Externally, they are a natural emollient and assist with exfoliation. 
    • Baking Soda ~  this economic little gem washes away oils and perspiration and neutralizes acids on the skin.  It's great for rashes and skin problems.  Personally, I will take a bath in nothing but baking soda if I feel a bug coming on.  It is great for draining the lymphatic system of toxins and disease. Consequently, it is also a great post massage soak.
    • Ground Oatmeal ~ great for softening and soothing the skin.  Easy on the wallet too.  Just buy some no brand oatmeal and grind it in your food processor.
    • Essential Oils ~ lending their healing aromatherapy quality to the bath, essential oils have a variety of benefits.  I enjoy the relaxing benefits of lavender, the rejuvenating affects of tea tree and the cold and flu healing affects of eucalyptus.  This web site is wonderful for other oil ideas and their benefits. 
    Yes, this is my actual bathroom cupboard and my actual bath-time "medicine" ; )
    Depending on what I feel I need, I put a little of each into my bath as the water is running. And if my skin is especially dry, I also add olive oil. To be honest, I don't keep the olive oil in my bathroom, I just grab the bottle from my kitchen pantry when I need it.

    Soak for no more than twenty minutes or so. When you are finished, smooth aloe vera gel on your skin to assist in removing toxins and be sure to drink at least eight ounces of water. I also like to allow time to lie down and rest, at least fifteen minutes. (I recommend doing yoga after a hot bath.  You will be more flexible, and with your mind at ease, you may find the postures easier to accomplish.)

    As you can see, taking a hot bath is not only relaxing, it is healing as well.  Taken at least three times a week, you will also notice a rise in your energy level as well.  Enjoy!

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