Salt therapy, or halotherapy, uses the chemical composition of pure pink Himalayan salt to raise negative ions in the air. This kind of feels like a day at the beach! It helps you feel relaxed, reduce stress, improve respiratory function, and more. Not only that, but it is 100% natural, drug-free, safe, noninvasive! We recently installed two salt walls and several salt lamps at Cornerstone Wellness Center, and I can tell a huge difference in how I feel.
Origin of Himalayan Salt
The only pure source of Himalayan salt is in the Punjab region of Pakistan, near the foothills of the Himalayas, where it is hand-mined from rock crystals. (Source) Himalayan salt comes from the primordial seas that dried up millions of years ago.
Always do your research on where you obtain your Himalayan salt, ensuring it is from Punjab and is extracted using a gentle method. Some companies use explosives to mine their salt. They do this because they can get this salt much faster and cheaper, but the structure of the salt is compromised in the process.
Himalayan salt gets its pink hue from the extra minerals it contains above and beyond normal sea salt. These include potassium, magnesium, and calcium among its purported 84 trace minerals.
How does it work?
By raising negative ions in the air, Himalayan salt reaps numerous health benefits. Negative ions are oxygen atoms charged with an extra electron. When we inhale these odorless, tasteless, invisible molecules, we begin to experience its effects. High concentrations of negative ions are naturally found in places like after rainstorms, around waterfalls, mountains and on beaches.
When there is moisture in the air, this moisture is taken in by the Himalayan salt. It then renders positive ions (also called “free radicals”) harmless and puts out beneficial negative ions in the atmosphere. This is sorely needed since the amount of positive ions in our environment has increased due to industrialization and pollution. (Source)
Once the salt absorbs the particles and water, it then returns water vapor back into the environment. The heat from the light activates the ions in the salt, helping to release negative ions. Himalayan salt cleans the air, much like an ionizer, but without the need for filters or cleaning.
Health Benefits of Himalayan Salt
Salt is a natural anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and antimicrobial. And the impact of the negative ions it generates is powerful.
Alleviate Asthma, Allergies and Respiratory Conditions
Dr. Albert P. Krueger, a Microbiologist and experimental Pathologist at the University of California, found that an astonishing small quantity of negative ions could kill bacteria and quickly take them out of the air so they were less likely to infect people. This is wonderful news for those who struggle with allergies. By removing pathogens (for example, pollen) from the air, it can relieve allergy symptoms.
Historically, lung disease sufferers in Central Europe entered underground salt mines to relieve their breathing problems (Source). Since then, the benefits of salt therapy for those with lung conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease have been studied. (Source) These studies have revealed salt therapy benefits for:
- 85 percent of mild and moderate asthma cases
- 75 percent of severe asthma cases
- 97 percent of chronic bronchitis, bronchiectasis and cystic fibrosis cases
Reduce Stress, Depression and Improve Relaxation
In Robert Thayer’s book, The Origin of Everyday Moods: Managing Energy, Tension, and Stress he notes that many studies have shown that negative ions increase good moods. One study showed a link between negative air ionization and lower depression scores. (Source)
This can be partly attributed to the ability of negative ions to both lower blood pressure and reduce serotonin levels in the blood. (Source)
Cooking With Salt Blocks
Did you know that you can even cook with salt blocks? We made the most amazing fish the other night and cooked it on a salt block in the oven. It takes a little extra time to preheat the block of salt prior to cooking in the oven but it was worth it!
Check out this book on Salt Block cooking and expand your skills in the kitchen!
I hope you can swing by Cornerstone Wellness Center soon and experience the healing benefits of salt therapy with me!