Heading to the spa is all about unwinding, of course, but can we expect real health benefits, too?
Yes and no. Psychologically, the feeling of being cared for goes a long way. At a spa, our needs are anticipated, our every comfort considered. Regardless of the service – whether you decompress in a salt cave or get your toes painted, it’s the pampering that counts towards a better mood.
Studies out of Japan and Germany have shown that spa use is linked to better physical and mental health, better sleep, fewer sick days and hospitalizations.
Physically, though, some spa services are healthier than others.
As a caveat, we are talking about day spas, here. There are retreat spas that specialize in detoxification, health treatments and diet, like the Hippocrates Health Institute. These spas are a major commitment – and a big investment. Retreat spas make sense when you want – and can afford – a total health-realignment.
When it comes to day spas, some treatments are pure indulgence and others are really therapeutic. Here are three of the best. Each can fit into about an hour, and won’t break the bank.
Whether you favour Swedish, Shiatsu, Thai or another therapeutic style, the benefits are real. Massage reduces pain, stress and tension, without doubt. Studies suggest massage may also help anxiety, digestive disorders, fibromyalgia, headaches, insomnia, myofascial pain, parasthesias and nerve pain, soft tissue strains or injuries and temporomandibular joint pain. Wow!
Mud Baths and Mud Wraps
The mud used in these treatments is derived from mineral-rich sources: volcanic ash, lakes, seawater and hot springs. Skin absorbs these natural minerals, including magnesium. Since most of us are getting too few minerals in our diets, absorbing them through the skin is helpful. Mudpacks and mud baths appear to have anti-inflammatory activity, reducing redness and irritation associated with some skin conditions. There may also be analgesic benefits to mud treatments – the pain of osteoarthritis, for example, may be relieved.
Saunas and Steam Rooms
The Nordic cultures are onto something: saunas and steam rooms are good for circulation, and the heat triggers the release of endorphins, feel-good hormones that contribute to relaxation and an overall mood boost. Moving from a hot to a cool environment also promotes better sleep. When our body temperature drops, another hormone, melatonin, is released. Melatonin helps us to slip more easily into sleep.
Sweating in itself is beneficial, too – and not just for the short-term satisfaction of water weight-loss. Sweat is great for our skin and releases toxins. You’ll get a healthy pink glow and clearer pores.
And when you can’t hit a spa, but you need relaxation, pronto, there’s Natural Calm.
– See more at: https://topnutritionals.ca/blog/which-spa-services-are-healthiest.html#sthash.sn2sPO5k.dpuf