Benefits and pure joy of bathing
Benefits and pure joy of bathing
Taking a nice warm bath might be a bit more beneficial than we sometimes think. If we remind ourselves of Cleopatra who enjoyed warm baths in donkey’s milk, or Pharaohs who built baths made of gold and diamonds and let us not forget ancient Rome, where bathing played a major part in their culture and social life, all of these facts show us that there must be more to bathing.
Sometimes it's amazing how much benefit we can get from little things, such as soaking in hot water. In fact, there have been quite a few studies conducted that show bathing is not only a great way to unwind and keep a good hygiene, but it can also stimulate your immune system, help skin conditions, improve sleep, strengthen blood circulation and detoxify the body.
Blood circulation & blood pressure
Let us start with improving blood circulation and lowering blood pressure. A recent study has shown that taking a warm bath can lower your blood pressure and boost your circulation. When taking a bath the water creates light physical pressure on the body and increases the capacity of our heart, so we can look at bathing as a sort of an exercise for our blood vessels. Simply put, when inwater (this also happens when swimming in the sea or swimming pool), the heart works faster and stronger. A separate Japanese study showed that 10 minutes soaking in a warm bath improved cardiovascular health in elderly men and women, reducing pain and helping them to perform better in exercise tests.
According to a study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, bathing can also reduce blood sugar levels. It was shown that diabetics who spent just half an hour in a hot tub could reduce their blood sugar levels by around 13% – as the heat dilated their blood vessels, their blood-flow improved and the body made better use of its insulin.
Warm water relaxes the body and prepares us better for falling asleep. And why is that so? When a tense body enters a warm bath, the hot water increases the body temperature and relaxes the muscles, which helps us relax physically but also mentally. Moreover, when sleeping between cool sheets the body temperature drop shifts signals to the body that it’s sleeping time, so the body produces melatonin which induces sleep. Taking a warm bath before sleep raises your body temperature, after the bath our body slowly cools down, which causes your body to feel sleepy. But be awarethat a really hot bath can cause the opposite effect, so if you are bathing for relaxation or to help you sleep, keep the temperature lowand limit your bath time to no more than 20 minutes.
Fighting a cold
A hot bath can help open stuffy nasal passages and ease body aches. The hot steam can also dry out the mucus accumulating in the throat, which can be one of the reasons for ongoing coughing. A few drops of eucalyptus essential oil into your warm bath can help release sinus tension and open your nasal passages.
Detoxifying your body
The natural way of detoxifying is by sweating. It is an important form of excretion, and some waste metabolites are removed from the body this way. We sweat a lot while exercising, but a hot bath is a lot easier way to sweat and, actually, we usually sweat much more in a hot bath than when exercising. It might sound a bit strange, but you do sweat under water, so while taking a hot bath, you can really lose quite a lot of fluid, which means that you must drink water — before, during, and after taking a hot bath! Moreover, soaking in hot wateropens up the pores in our skin and can also assist in pulling harmful toxins from your skin. This ancient remedy assists your body in eliminating toxins and if you add bath salts to your warm water it can as well help absorb minerals and nutrients.
Despite all the advantages I have just listed, a regular soak in a hot bath might not be recommended for everyone, so please:
-Consult with your doctor about taking hot baths, if you have a heart condition or have any concerns.
-Don't forget to drink water before, while and after taking a bath.
– Don’t soak for more than 20 – 30 minutes.
– Be careful with the temperature of the water, I recommend a temperature around 35C (95F)
– If pregnant you should definitely consult your doctor.
Enjoy your next bath and here is a DIY on making your own Relaxing Lavender Bath Salts