I was pretty sick recently: I skipped an entire day of class, I slept for an absurd amount of time, soup and water became my main source of sustenance, and tissues became my best friends. I didn’t go to the doctor because I was convinced it was just a glorified cold, and I could overcome it. Plus, going to the doctor isn’t exactly cheap.

One of my best friends believes in trying out alternative methods before heading to the doctor. Whenever she thinks she is getting sick, she looks up homemade recipes and tries out the concoctions—for instance, tea and honey to cure a sore throat or garlic for, well, everything. She inspired me to take a look at natural healing methods.

I turned to the Internet to search for something homemade to help me with my cold. While searching, I found a decent amount of “natural medicine” recipes I could try but what I really liked was the idea of detox baths. I knew baths were used to relax muscles and could be therapeutic, but I had no idea there were specific baths that help with different things.

I looked up detox bath recipes targeting colds and figured I had nothing to lose, so I tried one out. The one I did was called a ginger detox bath. I’m sure there are a lot of variations, but here is what I ended up doing: I filled the tub with steaming hot water, added 2 cups of Epsom salt, 1 cup of baking soda, two bags of chamomile tea and a nice sized hunk of fresh ginger, sliced.

The Epsom salt helps make you sweat, reduces inflammation and relieves muscle aches. Baking soda balances the water and neutralizes any chemicals that may be in the water, while also softening your skin. The chamomile is supposed to relieve any headache you may have. Lastly, the ginger increases circulation, opens pores and makes you sweat. I also found that the ginger helped me breathe better, and it smells great!

After I added all the ingredients, I soaked for about an hour. I made sure I had a cold bottle of water and a cold washcloth so I didn’t faint. When I was done, I was breathing better and my headache had been alleviated.

The point of the detox bath is to sweat. Sweating is the natural way of detoxifying. Bathing is very prominent in Japanese culture, but in western culture we’ve opted for quick showers. Soaking in the hot water helps pull toxins to the surface of your skin. When the water starts to cool down, the toxins are pulled out of your body.

Of course, taking a detox bath can’t replace the doctor, but if it can help me shake a cold or prevent an oncoming one altogether, I am all for it! Plus, I would rather throw a few cheap, household items into my bath versus pricey bath salts, which can be $10 or more. Overall, my experience was great, and detox baths are definitely something I am going to continue.
For more information on detox baths visit here.