Epsom salt got its name from a bitter mineral spring at Epsom, in Surrey, England.
Epsom salt is not a traditional mineral, it is a mineral compound comprised of magnesium and sulfate (MgSO4). It is composed of small, colorless crystals similar to table salt (sodium chloride). Epsom salt has a long history of use for health and beauty, household cleaning and gardening. Originally it was derived from mineral water, while now it is obtained through mining.
Ten Benefits of Epsom Salt:
1. Boosts Magnesium Levels - Magnesium is necessary for 700-800 enzyme functions in the body. Most people (70-80 % of the population) are deficient in magnesium. Its nearly impossible to obtain sufficient amounts of magnesium from diet alone as the soil is deficient in it. Magnesium deficiency is a major factor in chronic diseases, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, migraines, etc.
2. Reduces stress - Magnesium is called the "antianxiety mineral". Soaking in Epsom salt not only will relax your muscles but can calm your mind, too. According to research from the University of North Carolina magnesium deficiency magnifies stress reactions. Excess stress hormone adrenaline depletes magnesium. Magnesium is needed in the body to bind serotonin, the "feel-good" hormone. Reducing stress promotes better sleep as well.
3. Increases Energy - Magnesium is needed in 6 out of 8 steps in ATP production, which is the body's energy production taking place in the Mithocondria, Therefor increasing magnesium levels can help feeling more energized without being restless.
4. Helps to Remove Toxin - The sulfates in Epsom salt assist the body in flushing out heavy metals and other toxins. Our skin is the largest organ and it also takes part in detoxifying. Detox baths stimulate the lymph system and increase oxygen and blood flow in the body. Sulfates in Epsom salt stimulate the pancreas to make digestive enzymes necessary to detoxify the body.
5. Relives Constipation - Epsom salt is an FDA-approved laxative and it is commonly used to relieve constipation. When taken internally, it acts as a laxative by increasing water in the intestines and cleansing the colon of waste. Just like any laxative, Epsom salt can provide temporary relief, but cannot be used on the regular bases. Healthy diet high in fiber have a more permanent result in improving digestion and normalizing elimination.
6. Reduces Inflammation and Pain - Low magnesium is associated with high C-reactive protein (CRP), which is a marker for systemic inflammation in the body. Increasing magnesium levels help lowering CRP. Epsom salt baths also help to reduce pain, including headaches, sore muscles, after child birth, etc. If you have a splinter, soaking it in Epsom salt water. in order to drive the slinter out.
7. Improves Blood Sugar Levels - Both magnesium and sulfate in Epsom salt help regulate insulin production in the body. Healthy magnesium levels reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
8. Hair Volumizing - Adding Epsom salt to a natural hair conditioner provides a texturizing and boosting effect for the hair. It also decreases excess oil.
9. Relieves itchy skin and bug bites - Epsom salt works by drying out itches and insect bites while leaving healthy skin smooth and cleansed.
10. Boosts the health of house plants - House plants are beneficial in cleaning the indoor air. They benefit from the occasional magnesium boost as well. Adding some Epsom salt as part of the regular watering/fertilizing treatment results in robust house plants.
Epsom salt can be found in most drug stores and it is very affordable. It comes in smaller and bigger packages.
Uses of Epsom Salt:
1. For bath soaks: Mix 1 cup of Epsom salt and 10 drops of lavender essential oil, Soak in it for 20-30 minutes.
2. For internal use: Follow the instructions on the package or consult your physician.
3. For splinter removal: Mix 1/3 cup of Epsom salt in 1 cup of water, soak the body part in it for 10 minutes.
4. Hair volumizing treatment: Mix 1 part Epsom salt with 1 part natural hair conditioner, leave it on for 20 minutes then rinse it off.
5. For house plants: Sprinkle some Epsom salt on the soil or mix 1 tsp Epsom salt in with the water. 1-2 tsp is enough for about a month.