If Epsom salts have caught your attention lately, this article is for you. For a while now, the salts have been touted as popular remedy for many ailments. From muscle pain and soreness to stress, these salts are being used widely. They are also affordable and easy to use, and if you are looking to buy them, here is everything you need to know first.
What are they?
Epsom salt is the popular name for magnesium sulfate, which is a chemical compound comprising magnesium, sulfur, and oxygen. The salt derives its name from the town of Epsom in Surrey, England, where it is believed to have been discovered first.
But, it should be noted that Epsom is different from table salt, despite having a similar appearance. While the latter is edible, Epsom is actually bitter. So while some people consume it with water, they probably would not add it to their food.
It is also known as ‘bath salt’ because it gets dissolved in water, and for years now, has been used to treat ailments like as constipation, insomnia and fibromyalgia.
How do they work?
When Epsom salt is dissolved in water, it releases magnesium and sulfate ions, which are then believed to be absorbed by the skin. While there aren’t many good evidences to prove it, Epsom is widely used in baths, and/or applied to the skin as a cosmetic. Sometimes, it is also taken orally as a magnesium supplement, or as a laxative.
Many healthcare professionals think of Epsom salts as therapeutic agents. For those who lack magnesium in their body, Epsom salts can come handy. Again, there are no actual evidences available, despite beliefs that magnesium is best absorbed via Epsom salt baths.
Magnesium is essential for good sleep and reduced stress. It also helps the body produce melatonin, a hormone that promotes sleep. Also, the salt bath is know to have a relaxing effect after a long, hard day at work.
Epsom salts are known to reduce pain and swelling. Many people who have been using the salts believe they help with fibromyalgia and arthritis.
The side effects
If not used correctly, they can lead to problems including diarrhea, bloating, or upset stomach. This, however, is when they are consumed orally. If you are looking to use it as a laxative, drink plenty of water as well to reduce digestive discomfort. Additionally, an excessive intake may lead to allergies and allergic reactions. Consult with your doctor first.