Epsom salt has numerous health benefits as well as many beauty uses. It is made up of the chemical compound magnesium sulfate.
Magnesium, one of the components of human cells, is required by the body to regulate more than 325 enzymes and plays an important role in many bodily functions. Magnesium deficiency has also been associated with health problems like high blood pressure, osteoporosis and migraines.
Sulfate plays a key role in the formation of brain tissue and improves the body’s absorption of nutrients. It also helps in the detoxification process.
As magnesium sulfate can be absorbed through the skin, enjoying Epsom salt baths on a regular basis is an easy and ideal way to enjoy the health benefits of Epsom salt. Epsom salt also can be used topically or taken internally.
Here are the top 10 health benefits of Epsom salt.
1. Eases Stress
Epsom salt can help you calm down when you are feeling stressed. Stress drains the body of magnesium and increases adrenaline levels.
Magnesium plays an important role in the release and uptake of serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical in the brain. This creates a feeling of well-being and relaxation while also reducing anxiety, irritability, insomnia and abnormal heart rhythms.
- Add 1 cup of Epsom salt to warm bath water.
- Soak in it for 20 minutes to feel more relaxed and sleep better.
- Take an Epsom salt bath about 3 times a week to enjoy a stress-free life.
2. Aids Detoxification
Epsom salt can assist in eliminating toxins from the body. The magnesium in Epsom salt is required for detoxifying cells. It also helps detox the body of environmental contaminants that can potentially cause ill health.
To enjoy a relaxing detox bath, stir in 1 to 2 cups of Epson salt in a bathtub filled with warm water and soak in it for 10 to 15 minutes, 2 or 3 times a week.
3. Relieves Muscle Cramps
Epsom salt can help treat muscle cramps and relieve sore muscles after workouts. Magnesium effectively eases pain and reduces inflammation. This in turn promotes muscle relaxation and healing.
- Make a thick paste of Epsom salt and hot water. Apply it on the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes to get soothing comfort.
- Another option is to soak your body in a tub of warm water with 1 cup of Epsom salt for at least 20 minutes.
Your muscle cramps will likely heal after one application or bath. If needed, repeat the process the next day.
4. Eases Aches & Pains
Epsom salt can help alleviate symptoms like pain, swelling and inflammation. Magnesium helps regulate the pH levels in the body.
This in turn reduces stiffness, inflammation and pain associated with any form of arthritis, including gout. It helps in bone mineralization as well. Plus, Epsom salt promotes nerve functionality and soothes nerve pain.
- Add 2 tablespoons of Epsom salt to hot water.
- Soak the aching body parts in it for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Do this up to 3 times each week.
5. Adds Volume to Hair
Epsom salt is also healthy for your hair. It can add body to your hair, remove excess oil from your scalp and keep your scalp healthy. Plus, it can remove the buildup of hair products on the scalp that cause problems like thinning hair, hair loss and oily hair. Also, the minerals in Epsom salt help repair and strengthen damaged hair.
- To make a volumizing hair mask, mix equal parts of a warm deep conditioner and Epsom salt. Apply it on your slightly damp hair. Leave it in for 15 to 20 minutes, then rinse thoroughly with cold water. Use this hair treatment once a week only.
- If you have oily hair, add a little bit of Epsom salt to your shampoo and wash your hair as usual. Do it 2 times a week only.
6. Exfoliates Skin
For healthy and smooth skin, it is essential to exfoliate properly once or twice week. This helps get rid of dead skin cells and remove oil from skin pores that can cause itchiness, pimples, blackheads and other common skin problems.
- You can simply rub a handful of Epsom salt over damp skin to remove dead skin cells, then rinse it off with warm water.
- Another option is to mix a handful of Epsom salt with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and rub it all over your wet skin to exfoliate. Rinse thoroughly.
Use either of these treatments on a weekly basis to make your skin healthy, smooth and soft.
7. Treats Sunburn
Epsom salt is very soothing for sunburned skin. Its anti-inflammatory properties alleviate mild sunburn irritation like itchiness and pain. It can even help maintain an even skin tone.
- To treat sunburned hands and legs, mix 2 tablespoons of Epsom salt in 1 cup of water and store it in a spray bottle. Spray it on the affected area. Leave it on for 10 minutes, then take a bath. Do this several times a week to notice improvement.
- Another option is to fill a bathtub with lukewarm water and mix in 1 cup of Epsom salt, stirring thoroughly so the salt crystals dissolve properly. Add a few drops of lavender essential oil and soak in the water for 20 minutes.
8. Alleviates Foot Problems
Be it athlete’s foot, foot odor, dry foot, pain or any other foot problems, Epsom salt can be used to treat these issues. Also, its natural exfoliating properties will help soften rough and callused skin on your feet.
- To get rid of foot odor or relieve symptoms of Athlete’s foot, add ½ cup of Epsom salt to a foot tub filled with warm water. Soak your feet in it for 10 minutes once daily until the problem is resolved.
- To treat toenail fungus, soak the affected toes in hot water mixed with a handful of Epsom salt 3 times a day until you get rid of the problem.
9. Improves Heart Health
Epsom salt also improves heart health. The magnesium helps maintain a normal heart rhythm and healthy arteries. When the arteries are healthy, there is less risk of blood clots, plaque buildup and damage to arterial walls.
Also, Epsom salt improves blood circulation, which in turn reduces the risk of heart disease and strokes.
Enjoy an Epsom salt bath 3 times a week to improve your cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of heart attack.
10. Improves Digestion
Epsom salt assists in the elimination of harmful toxins and waste products from the body and the digestive system. It also works as a laxative to soften stools, making them easier to pass, and can be used to treat constipation.
- Dissolve 1 or 2 teaspoons of Epsom salt in 1 cup of warm water and drink it on an empty stomach once a day. When taken internally, Epsom salt can cause some side effects, including gastrointestinal irritation, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. Consult your doctor before taking Epsom salt. Do not take it longer than 1 week.
- Also, soaking in an Epsom salt bath helps reduce water retention and tummy bloating.
Warning: Epsom salt must be avoided by those who have kidney problems or diabetes. It is also not recommended for children under 6 years of age.