Caravan Sonnet: the Lyme Diaries: detox baths

10/11/14

the Lyme Diaries: detox baths

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One of the things with Lyme Disease (and any illness in my opinion) that is most important is the issue of detoxifying. In this series I am going to be sharing some tips and thoughts of how I detox and the first thing I wanted to share is about detox baths. (Actually my very first recommendation for anyone - sick or not- is dry brushing. If you haven't read all of the amazing benefits and why you should be doing this every day you can read my post, the benefits of dry brushing, by click here!) If y'all read my post about "the day in my life" you saw that I take two detox baths a day! I received several emails and questions about this specifically and so I thought I would share why I take detox baths and what my baths look like currently (and where they are heading!)

To be frank, I am not sure why I didn't start doing detox baths before last November. I used to take a relaxing bath once a week when I was teaching (to relax my muscles and such) but I never really investigated the arena of detox baths until last year. After several of my Lyme symptoms continued to flare and extremely worsen I was desperate to find relief and a friend suggested Epsom salt baths. I researched a ton about it, talked with several other "Lymie friends", discussed it with a naturopath doctor, talked with my physician, and continued to research some more. After about 4 weeks of intense research I thought it was worth a try and could help me on this journey. Frankly I have never regretted it or looked back. The benefits that I have found (it has definitely helped lessen a lot of my pain symptoms and some other symptoms) plus the benefits to my health and help in healing have been priceless. I often get asked if I truly keep up with my detox baths and the answer is a resounding "yes"! (If you know me you know that I don't "cheat on my diet or skip supplements or anything of the sort". I am trying to heal!! *smiles*) I do them everyday (even on holidays and when I don't "feel" like it) and plan to even after I am healed (although probably not two a day!). 

One of things that a detox bath helps me with is to simply aid my body in removing unwanted toxins. Due to the fact that I do have the MTHFR gene my body struggles (more than the "normal person") to detoxify. Having added toxins is never good for your health but especially when you are fighting Lyme (or any other illness) you do not need to carry additional toxins. These baths are a simple aid that I can use to help my support this detoxification process. 

A second thing that a detox bath does is to help strengthen my immune system. When you are seriously ill detox baths can be a simple way of allowing you to absorb some things that you might not be able to otherwise do through your skin. Some of the products that you can use in your detox bath can help strengthen your immune system which can also be a wonderful help!

So as I mentioned before I take Epsom salt baths (as my base).There are so many benefits of Epsom salts which include: "(1) improving heart health (2)reducing blood clots (3) lowering blood pressure (4) improving the body's ability to use insulin, (5)reducing the incidence or severity of diabetes,
(6) Flush toxins and heavy metals from the cells (7) easing muscle pain and helping the body to eliminate harmful substances, (8)Improve nerve function by regulating electrolytes and more." (All of this information has been taken off of the Epsom Salt Council's website page.)

I add to the Epsom salt baths a 1/3 of a cup of raw apple cider vinegar (you can read about the benefits of apple cider vinegar here), a 1/3 of a cup of Aloe Vera Juice, and then certain essential oils that I have researched and found to be helpful not only with my symptoms but also help in the healing process of Lyme Disease. [I have also been known to add in additional kinds of Aloe Vera juice, probiotics, and even water from stems of greens]. Eventually as I continue to get stronger I will be adding in Baking Soda (which is a great detoxifying agent) and then eventually (way down the road as I continue to heal) I will be adding in Hydrogen Peroxide. 

There are so many different detox bath recipes that you can find online or in doing research. Kris Carr has created a detox bath recipe which you can find by clicking here. The wellness mama lists three different detox bath recipes on her website which you can find by clicking here.  (Honestly I could list about a thousand so I would encourage you to talk with your physician and do lots of research!)

As far as the temperature goes I actually vary the temperature every day with every bath. It takes a crazy amount of planning but I take the time to really think through and map out my baths and their temperatures. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, many people believe that very hot baths are the best at killing toxins. I believe that there is merit to this, but there is also research coming out of Japan (Kyoto Prefectural University) that states that there is some correlation between extreme hot baths and heart attacks. Due to this (and I don't think this can be stressed enough) it is VERY important to consult with a physician before beginning baths. Second, I also vary the temperature because there is some research that states that taking a cold shower can actually improve your immune function. All of that to say it is best to consult with a physician to come up with a detox bath schedule that works best for you!

At the end of the day there are some negative side effects of detoxing (which again is why you want to consult a physician) and I would encourage you to go slow. Anyone who has done any type of detoxing knows what I mean. Last year when I first was set to begin I researched a bunch didn't talk with a physician and jumped right into doing SEVERAL different detoxifying things. I was sick as a dog for several days and it was awful. When I started the research process again I did things more slowly (even with the amount of the ingredients that I use) and slowly starting adding different detoxifying methods in. At the beginning it felt that I was doing absolutely nothing, but now, almost a year later I can't believe all that my body is doing. So take things slow... and especially if you are seriously ill take things even slower. Treat your body like the warrior that it is and honor it with taking things one step at a time. Drink lots of extra water and rest more. Detoxifying is a process and it is not a sprint so take your time and you will get there!

I would love to know if you take detox baths and what you put in yours! Do you find them helpful? 

Again, ALL of this information is only to be helpful and I can't stress how important it is to follow the path of a doctor in your detoxifying process. Detoxifying is a necessary part of healing but must be done under the care of a knowledgeable physician. 

4 comments:

  1. I love detox baths. I typically use epson salts, baking soda and some oils. I had not heard of Apple cider vinegar and will consider trying it.

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    1. That is awesome that you love detox baths!! So cool that you are able to use baking soda! I have read so many great things about it and can't wait till I am stronger to add that in! Thank you for sharing!
      :) Rebecca

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  2. This is fascinating Rebecca! I used to do salt soaks but haven't done one in a while. Where do you purchase your salts?Thanks for the inspiration :)

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    1. Hi Daisy! Thank you so much for your sweet encouragement and taking the time to comment! I purchase my Epsom Salts through Target currently (simply due to price). I have read that there are "better" quality salts and I do believe this is true but due to finances I have been using Targets! I hope that helps!
      :) Rebecca
      p.s. I would love to email you back directly Daisy but you are a "no reply blogger" and I couldn't find your email!

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