A hot shower used to be my definition of ‘me time.’ Then I wised up and realized that soaking in a long hot bath would exponentially increase my self-care time!! Soaking eases tension, not only in your muscles but also internally as your mind has a chance to slow down and be quiet for a bit. I find the best time for a leisurely bath is after my kiddo goes to bed; I can relax without rushing and afterwards sleep like a baby.
A detox bath is one of the easiest healing therapies we can do to live a REVIVIFIED life and facilitate our body’s natural detoxification system. Plus, it relieves stress; something most all of us have in abundance!
Taking a detox bath can also soothe sore muscles, help stop colds and infections and open congested sinuses. As your pores open and blood is drawn to the skin, detox ingredients like Epsom salt and apple cider vinegar can draw out toxins and deliver minerals like magnesium.
Toxins are in the air we breathe, the food we eat, the medications we take and in the water we drink. Toxins cause irritation, harm and destruction in the body if left unchecked.
Detoxification is the body’s way of removing and metabolizing these dangerous compounds. It is a process the body does naturally without us even knowing it. However, the capacity of the body’s detoxification process is not endless.
A detox bath encourages the body to efficiently flush out toxins.
Our toxic burden is a result of the toxins we are exposed to and our body’s ability to naturally detox. The more toxins we are exposed to, the harder the body has to work at eliminating these toxins.
The list of toxins that could potentially harm our bodies is almost endless; many start their day with a hot shower, the water is contaminated with pollutants, the soap and shampoo is full of chemicals, the toothpaste has fluoride, from there we may have breakfast where the food has been treated with pesticides or even genetically modified. We haven’t even left our house, yet we have been exposed to toxins that can potentially cause ill-health.
Even more alarming is our exposure to toxic substances is on the rise:
- 2,100 toxins, including pesticides, herbicides, PCBs, and medications have been found in our water supply
- 80,000 metric tons of carcinogens are released into the air annually in North America
- Over 80% of food have genetically modified ingredients
- The EPA estimates the average US citizen has residues from over 400 toxic compounds in their body
- 82,000 chemicals are in use today in the US, but only a fourth have ever been tested for toxicity
Don't worry... it's not the end of the world
It impossible to abolish our exposure to all toxins, however, we can reduce unnecessary exposure, and improve our body’s efficiency and ability to eliminate them.
When metabolic waste from toxins builds up in our body, we get sick. Problems with detoxification is one root of illness.
Let's Break It Down
The liver removes toxins and metabolic waste from the body by converting them to water-soluble compounds.
Once water-soluble they can be eliminated from the body through urine. Some waste products are not water-soluble and are transformed by the liver and excreted in the bile. The bile is then transported to the intestines where it exits the body through our bowels.
Toxins not eliminated or completely removed by either of these processes may be eliminated through our skin via our sweat.
A detox bath is one of the easiest healing therapies that can be done to facilitate and enhance our body’s natural detoxification process.
Typically, a detox bath is made with Epsom salt also known as magnesium sulfate, which not only draws out toxins, but has health benefits of its own:
- Ease stress and improves sleep and concentration
- Help muscles and nerves function properly
- Regulate activity of 325+ enzymes
- Help prevent artery hardening and blood clots
- Make insulin more effective
- Reduce inflammation to relieve pain and muscle cramps
- Improve oxygen use
- Flush toxins
- Improve absorption of nutrients
- Help form joint proteins, brain tissue and mucin proteins
- Help prevent or ease migraine headaches
How to Draw a Detox Bath
1. Add 5-10 drops essential oil (I love lavender) to 2 cups Epsom salt, then add to a standard tub full of water.
2. Ideally, you want the water quite hot as we are looking to create a nice sweat.
3. If your bath water is not filtered, add 1 cup of baking soda as this helps neutralize the chemicals, primarily chlorine, as well as increase mineral absorption.
4. Immerse yourself in the water, all the way up to your neck. You want as much of your body underwater as you can. Close your eyes, do some breathing exercises and soak for at least 20 minutes.
5. Once you are done soaking, rise out of the tub very slowly and cautiously. You may feel a little dizzy and light-headed, this will go away as you shower off quickly in cool water.
6. It is important not to use harsh soaps or shampoos as your pores are open and will just absorb the chemicals found in those products.
7. Once dry you can apply a natural moisturizer like body butter, shea butter or coconut oil and some aluminum-free deodorant, try to avoid lotions with perfumes, dyes or chemicals.
8. Do not eat immediately before or after taking a detox bath.
9. Instead hydrate yourself with filtered water before and after.
10. Allow time after your bath to rest and rejuvenate.
5 Detox Bath Recipes
Epsom + Coconut Oil
The easiest no-fail detox bath? Dump in a bunch of Epsom salt and soak for 60 minutes. Epsom salt delivers a dose of magnesium that has a number of benefits, including eliminating toxins, stimulating blood flow and soothing sore muscles. But when my skin is dry (which is pretty much all the time) I add a big scoop of coconut oil with about two cups Epsom salt. It’s like using a moisturizing body wash – the oil coats and hydrates your skin. This nicely counters the drying effect of soaking in hot water. You can apply more oil when you get out and go to bed all warm and oily.
Mustard + Baking Soda
Combine 1/4 cup mustard bath (I use Dr. Singha’s) with one cup of baking soda to balance your skin’s pH and draw out toxins. This bath is an anti-inflammatory treat for sore muscles or achy joints. While baking soda soothes dry, itchy skin the mustard bath creates a warming ‘icy hot’ effect with cooling essential oils like eucalyptus and thyme that help relax tight muscles and promote internal healing.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Add 1 cup of apple cider vinegar plus 1/2 cup Epsom salt and about 5 drops of lavender essential oil to help relieve skin or vaginal infections. The ACV draws out toxins and cleans out pores – even in sensitive regions. If the ACV smells ruins the sensory experience add the anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties of lavender oil to counteract the vinegar smell.
Hydroden Peroxide + Ginger
A great bath to try at the first sign of a cold. Add a bottle of hydrogen peroxide and 1 tablespoon of freshly grated ginger to bring on a good ‘sweat’ to help cleanse the body and draw out toxins. If you’re already feeling puny and congested, let a hot baths can speed healing as the steam works to open sinuses.
Sea Salt + Eucalyptus
For a weekly purifying bath combine 1 cup sea salt, 1 cup Epsom salt, 2 cups baking soda and 10 drops eucalyptus essential oil in hot water and soak for as long as you can. The salts and baking soda draw out impurities and excess water while delivering a dose of natural minerals. The essential oil is great for congestion as well as being stimulating and rejuvenating.
Now get soaking!!