Stressed? Anxious? How about trying a long soak in the tub? The holistic benefits of baths have been known for centuries – including in the societies of Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, and even in many communities of Ancient Indians. Ancient Rome developed aqueducts to supply water to populous areas and had indoor plumbing to embrace this ritual.
Bathing is a staple in the practice of holistic health for many reasons. For one, it lifts your mood and reduces stress. A 2002 study showed that a bath can wash away a host of emotional and physical ailments. Neil Morris, a psychologist at the University of Wolverhampton, studied 80 people who took a bath every day for a fortnight. “I found that bathing improved general psychological wellness radically. There was a significant drop in feelings of pessimism about the future and increases in hedonic tone, the internal feeling of pleasurability,” he said. To further enhance your mood, you can add certain pure essential oils to the bath. Try lavender for relaxation and peppermint to uplift energy.
As well as centering yourself in a holistic way, baths can help with certain skin conditions. Soothe itchy skin with oatmeal baths.
Bathing can help with muscle pain, stiffness, and even arthritis. Soak in a bath of epsom salts. The salt reduces swelling in cells by dehydrating them and inhibits the inflammatory-causing pain. Baths can also help with sleep by increasing our body temperature. This can help us fall asleep faster and deeper.
Many people are deficient in magnesium, the second most abundant element in our bodies. Soaking in magnesium bath flakes can help us absorb the element to help regulate enzymes and reactions in the body – like blood sugar levels, muscle and nerve function, blood pressure making protein, and cell and bone formation.
So, whether you try epsom salts, magnesium salts, essential oils, or simply choose to soak in your favorite bubbles, the holistic health benefits of baths are clear. Make some time in your schedule to relax and improve your well-being!