Learn how to draw an herbal bath and which herbs make the best bathing partners. Try an herbal foot bath, too.
The restorative power of water — from the ancient Greek and Roman bath to the modern jacuzzi — has been undeniable. A good soak can cleanse, soften, and nourish the skin, rejuvenate a tired body and spirit, and address sore and aching muscles. By adding herbs to your tub, you can customize and boost the effectiveness of bath time. So next time you draw a bath for yourself — or for your child or your partner — include a selection of herbs.
Choose one of these easy methods to prepare an herbal bath:
The word for medicinal bathing — thalassotherapy or hydrotherapy — comes from the Greek philosopher Thales, who believed that everything is derived from water. The Greek word thalassa means "small sea."
Choose one or a handful of herbs from the following groups, depending on the desired effect. Remember to include something aromatic!
agrimony herb, calendula flowers, chamomile flowers, mugwort herb, rosemary leaf, sage leaf, thyme leaf
Tip: Add a bit of oatmeal to your herbal blend to further soften and cleanse your skin.
agrimony herb, burdock root, chamomile flowers, comfrey leaf, elder flowers, hop flowers, hyssop herb, jasmine flowers, lavender flowers, lemon balm, linden flowers, marjoram leaf, marshmallow root, meadowsweet herb, mugwort herb, mullein leaf, passion flower herb, rose petals, sage leaf, sassafras root bark, slippery elm bark, valerian root, vervain herb
angelica root, basil leaf, bay leaf, comfrey leaf, eucalyptus leaf, fennel seeds, lavender flowers, lemon balm, lemon peel, lemon verbena, lovage root, marjoram leaf, meadowsweet herb, nettle leaf, peppermint leaf, rosemary leaf, sage leaf, savory leaf, spearmint leaf, thyme leaf
I enjoy the softening effects of a milk bath. Can I incorporate herbs?Sure. Simply infuse the herbs in warm milk for several hours, then pour into the bathwater.
What’s the best temperature for an herbal bath? That depends on whom you ask and what the desired effect is. Some experts suggest that the most healthful baths are a warm room temperature, about 70 to 85 degrees. Others suggest that body-temperature water, around 98 degrees, is most soothing. If you're interested in loosening tense muscles and relaxing, you may opt for a warmer soak (not over 106 degrees), but don’t stay in too long or you’ll exhaust yourself and dry your skin. (Hot baths are not recommended for the very young, very old, or those with heart conditions or high blood pressure.) To close pores and energize after a bath, you might rinse in a cool shower. If it’s bedtime you’re after though, don’t break the warm spell; simply dry off and snuggle in.
How can I give myself an herbal foot bath? Simply make an infusion or decoction of herbs and pour into a basin of warm water. Soak your feet for half an hour or so, then pat dry and moisturize. Follow with a foot massage, for maximum effect. Good herbs for a footbath include agrimony, alfalfa leaf, burdock root, eucalyptus leaf, lavender flowers, mustard seeds, peppermint leaf, sage leaf, and wormwood herb. For a relaxing treat - try our Fancy Foot Soak on our Herbal Foot Care page.
Never underestimate the importance of exercising for at least 30 minutes
Reduce Belly Fat Quicker With "Interval" Training...
Interval training means alternating periods of intense exercise with low-intensity exercise or rest, and can be used successfully with any type
of aerobic sport, such as walking, biking or jogging. Alternate slow and
fast cycling or fast walking and running, recommends the Mayo Clinic.
In resistance training, a person increases their muscle strength and
endurance by doing repetitive exercises with weights or weight machines. Building lean muscle speeds up metabolism and fat burning efficiency.
With stress, the body increases its production of Cortisol, a dangerous hormone that increases the appetite and makes people crave high-fat, high-sugar comfort foods such as cookies, cake and ice cream which
all pack on unwanted, unhealthy pounds.
To effectively reduce stress, try gentle stretching, deep breathing, yoga or meditation, or take a long nature walk.
Studies show that inadequate sleep affects levels of two key appetite hormones, Leptin (which decreases hunger) and Ghrelin (which increases hunger).
Several studies have proven that people who sleep only 5 hours compared to those who sleep at least 8 hours experience a dramatic decrease in Leptin and increase in Ghrelin, resulting in additional weight gain.
Eating Green Vegetables Improves Your Immune Defenses, Study Confirms
News media stories have alerted the public to a growing threat to our health: plastic bottles.
Plastic bottles were once thought to be miracles of modern science as they allowed us to preserve and store foods for convenient use. Indeed, most of us use plastic bottles every day. Plastics are made from coal, natural gas or (most commonly) petroleum. They have been around for almost 200 years.
Unsafe choicesPlastics in the human body look remarkably similar to hormones. Some look like male hormones, others like female hormones. Yet, they are not hormones; they are artificial substances completely unusable to the human body. They tend to accumulate in hormone tissue around the body and cause inflammation.
Many plastics have been directly implicated in health-related concerns. For example, in the book Living Downstream, Sandra Steingraber details numerous disease clusters related to plastic manufacturing. Ms. Steingraber suffered from breast cancer. She lived downstream from a plastics manufacturer. In graphic detail she discusses how certain plasticizers (chemicals used in making plastics) actually cause disease. According to another organization, Healthy Child ,especially damaging to children.
Plastics are identified by a numbering system from the American Chemistry Council. The number is stamped on the bottom of a plastic bottle in a little triangle (numbers outside the triangle are not relevant). According to Healthy Child, several numbers are simply too toxic to be safe for children – or anyone else! They include numbers 1, 3, 6 & 7. Number 7, for example, contains Bisphenol A (BPA), a plastic chemical known to disrupt brain chemistry in ways similar to ADHD, schizophrenia and autism. BPA is similar to testosterone. It is harmful to women and girls and even more harmful to men and boys. (Maybe BPA is one reason why ADHD and autism are more prevalent in boys?)
ConclusionPlastics are inherently unsafe in large amounts. However, with two centuries of use it seems that small amounts in our environment are tolerated without ill effects. Time will tell just how much and how often we can tolerate plastics in our environment and which ones are safest. For now, we know that we are serving our Wellness Journey best when we drink only from Number 2 plastic bottles.