Contributed by Healing Waters Spa and Salon, Springs Resort, Pagosa Springs, Colorado
Ancient native tribes in North America worshiped the healing powers of hot springs and considering them healing gifts from their gods. Many natural mineral springs, when finally discovered by white soldiers, had foot paths pounded down and leading from them like spokes on a wheel…a testament to the many pilgrimages made to the waters by the native population.
In our modern world, as we seek wellness through natural means, we find our food supply depleted of natural minerals previously found in our soils and we have to seek them elsewhere. Warm mineral soaks are healthful, recreational and healing.
A warming mineral soak prior to massage or other skin and body treatments, opens up the body and maximizes the effects and benefits of the treatments. Other benefits of warm mineral soaking can be curative to the lungs when the steam is inhaled. Anecdotal testimonials of asthma sufferers finding relief in areas where hot mineral springs exist are some of the more exciting stories of relief being associated with soaking in warm mineral water.
When trace amounts of the mineral lithium are found in the warm waters, soakers admit to ‘attitude adjustment,’ and relief from insomnia is another therapeutic benefit of ‘taking the waters.’
Sulfates in the water can provide anti-inflammatory benefits to bones and joints, and some soakers tout the benefits of ingesting the waters to prevent colds and infections. This practice must be done with extreme caution, as heavily laden mineral water can have a strong purgative effect with as little as a quarter teaspoon of ingestion.
It has been said by those who are able to work their way up to actually drinking cups of heavier waters that the purgative effect is the minerals working out the toxins in the body. Once the toxins are flushed over time, the drinker can enjoy a cup of the waters daily and experience only the effects of better health. Europeans have made bottled mineral water of a lighter variety a staple on their meal tables and in their daily lives.