Taking a relaxing Epsom salt bath offers health benefits that have led many people for years to make soaking in the tub a regular routine. Epsom salt baths are fantastic for relaxing and detoxing your body and getting the health benefits of magnesium, but if you don’t have time to take a bath, you can get the same benefits by doing an Epsom salt foot soak.
What is Epsom Salt?
Epsom salts are a naturally occurring pure mineral compounds made of sulfate and magnesium. They were named after a saline spring in Surrey, England, where they were first discovered.
There are many extraordinary uses for Epsom salt, however it is most commonly added to a hot bath or foot soak where the salt penetrates into the skin to reduce stress, detox the body and even promote weight loss.
Epsom Salt Bath Benefits
When Epsom salt is added to a hot bath, magnesium and sulfate are broken down and readily absorbed through the skin where they penetrate into the blood stream. Through a process called reverse osmosis, Epsom salt pulls harmful toxins out of the body through the skin and allows the magnesium and sulfates to enter.
Magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body so make sure you are aware of the hidden warning signs of low magnesium levels. Magnesium supports nerve and muscle functions, reduces inflammation, and it improves circulation throughout the body.
Sulfates are needed to maintain and build healthy joints as well as nervous and skin tissue.
The Benefits of Epsom Salt Foot Bath
Using Epsom salt foot soaks regularly can improve athlete’s foot, toenail fungus, sprains, gout, muscle soreness and bruises. It may also be able to restore immunity as it pulls out harmful toxins from the body and reduces inflammation.
Other benefits of Epsom salt baths include relief from:
Stiff joints and tight muscles
Arthritis pain and swelling
Soreness from diarrhea
Swollen and tired feet
Complications from sunburn
Epsom Salt Bath Recipe
Try this ultimate Epsom salt detox bath recipe for all your general care needs:
1-2 cups of Epsom salt (you can change the amount according to your body weight – read the next section below)
10-20 drops of lavender essential oil (optional)
1 cup of baking soda (optional)
1/3 cup of apple cider vinegar (optional)
Fill the bathtub up with warm water. Do not make the water so hot that you will not be able to sit in it.
Add 1-2 cups of Epsom salt directly in the water and soak for approximately 15-20 minutes up to three times per week. Don’t use Epsom salt in a hot tub, whirlpool, or other tub with jets unless the manufacturer says it’s okay.
Essential oils in your Epsom salt bath
You can also add 10-20 drops of your favorite essential oil such as eucalyptus or lavender to the bath for extra relaxation and medicinal benefits.
Apple cider vinegar in your Epsom salt bath
For added detoxification and benefits add apple cider vinegar (ACV). ACV is an excellent skin softener and rebalances your skin’s pH. It’s also an effective natural cure if you’re suffering from a fungal or microbial infection, due to its anti-fungal and antimicrobial properties. Add in 1/3 cup of ACV.
Baking soda in your Epsom salt bath
Some people like to add 1 cup of baking soda to their Epsom salt bath due to its fantastic cleansing ability as well as anti-fungal properties. Baking soda also leaves the skin very soft and helps soothe irritated skin.
How Much Epsom Salt to Use According to Your Weight
I found a few references claiming that the quantity of Epsom salt you use should correlate with your body weight.
Here are the quantities of Epsom salt to use in your bath according to your weight:
Children under 60 lbs (27 Kg): ½ cup to a standard size bath
Individuals between 60-100 lbs (27 kg- 45 kg): 1 cup
Individuals between 100-150 lbs (45 kg – 68 kg): 1½ cups
Individuals over 150 lbs (68 kg): 2 cups
Epsom Salt Foot Soak Benefits
Your foot contains 26 bones, 33 joints and more than 120 ligaments, muscles and nerves. With so many opportunities to experience pain, it is no wonder that approximately 75 percent of people in the United States are plagued with foot pain.
A foot soak with Epsom salt pulls toxins from the body while reducing inflammation and body aches. If you suffer from painful bunions, corns and calluses, hammertoe, plantar fasciitis, flat feet or tarsal tunnel syndrome, consider taking a warm Epsom salt foot bath two or three times per week.
Fill up a large bucket with hot water. Add ½ cup Epsom salt to the bucket and soak feet for 10 minutes at a time.