Last Modified on Feb 14, 2016
Epsom salts are likely to be one of those home remedies you remember from childhood. Mom seemed to recommend it for everything, but darned if you can remember what any of those things were! Well, Earth Clinic has a whole list of natural cures brought about by epsom salts, and the reader feedback to prove it!
Very simply epsom salts is the common name for magnesium sulfide, a naturally occurring compound of magnesium, sulfur, and oxygen. Epsom salts can be an important source of magnesium if used properly, and are used for that purpose medically, particularly for pregnant women in a number of cases, including to prevent eclampsia and cerebral palsy. The magnesium can also be absorbed transdermally, so a warm epsom salt bath is often recommended for those low in magnesium, as well as for aching muscles and joints.
Epsom salt's sulfur content additionally lends it antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal properties, which is why it is recommended as a home remedy for warts, herpes, and acne.
Natural Remedies: Try adding one or two cups of epsom salts to a warm bath to soothe sore muscles, relieve herpes symptoms, treat skin conditions, or simply raise your body's magnesium levels. A quarter hour in the tub is all you need.
Remedies for Epsom Salt
The Popularity of Epsom Salt Remedies - Full List
|Aches and Pains||3||2010-12-12|
|Liver Flush Cleanse||0||2013-04-12|
|Prevent Cerebral Palsy in Babies||1||2008-01-31|
|Sore and Aching Muscles||3||2011-12-15|
|Topical Applications of Epsom Salts||0||2013-11-21|
|Where to Buy: New Zealand||0||2013-07-10|
|Where to Buy: Philippines||0||2007-12-26|
I have very tense neck and shoulders and was recommended to take an epsom salt bath. I went and had a deep tissue massage and then came home and soaked in an epsom salt bath for a half hour. The next evening I felt achy and with a fever and then proceeded with diareha. The symptoms only lasted for 2 to 3 days. Could this be the absorbtion of the epsom salts into my system or was this just a mild bug? Any ideas?
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Melbourne, Vic., Australia
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Posted by Susan (Brisbane, Australia) on 01/19/2008
[YEA] I have been taking epsom salts all year every morning a few spinkles in my 500m water bottle (room temp water) and my aches and pains have all but disappeared. I remember my grandmother always put epsom salts in her tea each morning just a few sprinkles and she said so she did not get arthritus. Well I have to say I think it works but what I want to know is too much bad for you internally anyone know thanks
Replied by Chieko
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Posted by 05/25/2008 (Nowhereville, PA)
[YEA] If you have menstrual cramps, charley horses, eye twitches or any other kind of muscle cramps or just general aches and pains, try epsom salts baths. Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) is an excellent source of magnesium, much more bio-available and less expensive than supplements. You can soak in it in the tub, or make a spray from 4oz by weight of epsom salts dissolved in 32 fluid oz of distilled water. Put the epsom salt/water mix in a spray bottle and spray it on after your shower (rub it in like lotion all over). This is a home made version of "magnesium oil" (magnesium chloride), only made with epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) instead. Magnesium from epsom salts is very well absorbed throught the skin and doesn't loosen the bowels like oral magnesium supplements do. If you want to use magnesium chloride to make homemade "magnesium oil", get some unscented magnesium chloride bath salts and proceed as for "magnesium oil" made from epsom salts. Since I started using epsom salts, my skin is no longer dry...due, I think, to the sulfer content of epsom salts. If you feel up-tight, tense, anxious, nervous, crampy, etc., take an epsom salt soak. Exercise, and stress of all kinds, depleats magnesium, which is why an epsom salt soak after a work out or a stressful day is so good for you.
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London, United Kingdom
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Thrall, Texas, Usa
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YEA (1) 100%Posted by Amanda Rene (Anderson, CA) on 10/22/2008
[YEA] Prepare a bath as directed on the epsom salt container. Do not use ANY soap, bubble bath, etc in this bath. Soak in it for a couple minutes. Then, using a washcloth, scrub the skin for a minute or so. Soak the area in the bath for 20 minutes. Towel dry. Do this daily or every other day.
I found this out accidentally and I was pleasantly surprised to see it had an effect on my rear-end acne. I've been trying to get rid of it for 2 months! Soap and exfoliators seemed to make matters so much worse. After the first two soaks, the skin appeared softer and no longer red and inflamed. The cyst like formations were going away! I've been doing this for a week now and my skin looks and feels so much nicer now. I still have a few bumps but I bet they will be gone in another week. I hope this works as well for others as it did for me!
YEA (2) 100%Posted by Elle (Concord, New Hampshire) on 04/26/2007
[YEA] I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis at 11. At 18 (and it a lot of pain) I was given a book on curing arthritis naturally and set about doing it. One of the main proponents of the book was Apple Cider Vinegar. I took a cocktail of 2 teaspoons ACV, 1 teaspoon honey and 8 oz hot water twice a day. Within 2 or 3 weeks the flareups had ceased. It should be noted I also cut back on red meat and citric acids (they are everywhere!) which I discovered were a major trigger for me. And I took epsom salt baths twice a week. When I went back to my dr and had blood tests done my RA factor was down to a 2. (I have no idea what it was before but I am pretty sure 2 is almost nothing!) That was 25 years ago. I still have RA technically but I rarely have a problem with it. The first inkling I get that its sneaking back up on me I go back to the ACV. I still avoid my trigger food which have come to include, believe it or not, green beans. I believe trigger foods are different for everyone - only you can figure out what they are. I have not been on meds or seen a rhumatologist (sp?) in all that time. Thank god for ACV. Only for it I would be a cripple now instead of living the very full life that I do. I have to say that it makes me so mad that there is a very simple cure for RA and the medical world is not out there shouting about it. So many people suffer needlessly with this disease. If you have RA you owe it to yourself to go out there and find out what works for you. Find your triggers, try ACV, read all you can on natural cures. There is no magic pill - but there is a way and its all in your own hands. Goodluck and Good Health. Elle
Replied by Connie
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Auckland , New Zealand
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Shoreham By Sea, West Sussex, England
YEA (2) 67% NAY (1) 33%Posted by Jean (Franklin, Wi) on 08/18/2009
[YEA] No idea where I ever got the idea to try this, but it has worked every time for me. When I get a cold sore, I put a crystal of epsom salt on it. It stings for a bit, but within a short period of time the pain is down, a few hours I know its already on the mend, and the next day its usually about 1/2 to 2/3 cleared up. It only needs to be done once.
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Sylvania, Ohio, Usa
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Sewll, New Jersey
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YEA (3) 75% BETTER BUT NOT CURED (1) 25%Posted by Kate (Brisbane, Australia) on 07/16/2015
[YEA] I have had success with Msm and also chlorine dioxide for my eczema. However, I am floored by the results of putting at least 2 cups of Epsom salts in a hot bath and soaking for 20 to 30 minutes. It stops the itching, and my skin is softer and heals wicker. I seem to need to do it every 1 and a half days, depending on what I eat. Only been doing it for three weeks now. My boyfriend is a herbal doctor from Iran and he is helping me treat liver problems which is the long term solution, no doubt.
Ocean water and sun also help a lot, but this is not practical for me all the time. Watching my diet is hard, so I really need my skin to feel better, and I am amazed at how effective Epsom salts are, after reading about it long ago, but the concentration has to be strong enough i.e., 2 cups at least for a big bath. Good luck!
Posted by Esther (Tacoma , Washington) on 07/15/2009
[YEA] My son just arrived last week from San Diego with my 3 yrs old grandson who is in a terrible state with eczema. They are spending a fortune on Dr. and Ointments. I took my little grandson and put him into Epsom Salts baths for the past four days and the bleeding has stopped he is not scratching and it is drying out. I remembered that people came from all over the world to Israel for the salts baths at the dead sea so I applied what I learned from living in Israel and it is working. At first it hurt him but after a minute he was fine with the salt water. Try it. Esther Golden Pavek.
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Los Angeles, Ca
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Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
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Michelbach-le-bas, Alsace, France
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Antipolo City, Rizal, Philippines
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Posted by WT (Spartanburg, SC) on 05/31/2008
[YEA] I read somewhere that Epsom salt baths would cure eczema. My secretary has a friend who has a kid who suffers with it really bad, to the point he doesn't sleep well because of it. After I mentioned it to her, the friend tried it and she was floored with the results. It began clearing up very quickly and he has been sleeping very well lately. Another friend tried it with great results. People are simply amazed at the results.
Replied by Kattis
Auckland, New Zealand
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Pretoria, South Africa
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YEA (1) 100%Posted by Gayle (Mountain Home, Ar) on 03/27/2011
[YEA] Epsom salts has lots of remedies and more than I thought. One of those that wasn't mentioned that works for me is a food reactions remedy. I have candida and if I have eaten dairy or another sensitivity food, I will get very bloated and have heart irregularities and espsom salts in water takes the problem away within 20 minutes. The only remedy a doctor recommended was charcoal. I would like to find another way to help with the food sensitivites when needed. Thanks for your site.
Replied by Sophie
NAY (4) 80% BETTER BUT NOT CURED (1) 20%Posted by Kelly (Cincinnati, Ohio) on 02/26/2011
Does anyone know if the epsom salts in traditional gallbladdder flushes is contraindicated for people with high blood pressure? Thanks.
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Rancho Belago, Ca
Posted by Dan (Largo, FL) on 09/17/2006
[NAY] I've done about 20 liver & gallbladder flushes over the last 23 years. I agree about the confusion on "soap stones", which of course are not gall stones. I've never agreed to such claims, as there are just too many that come out even if you do liver flushes a week apart. If that's all that is expelled, there's a good chance that there are missing steps that look "optional", but actually are vital to the procedure. I say "vital" because the lack of these steps could actually prove dangerous. I learned how to do a liver flush from my brother who cave me a copy of the procedure developed by Dr.Kelley.
The big difference is he uses apple juice with Phosfood drops for several days to a week before the flush. The malic acid in the apple juice and the phosphoric acid in the Phosfood drops act to soften the stones. If the stones aren't softened, they may not pass, and you've just wasted a lot of your time and half a cup of perfectly good olive oil. etc.
Also, if the stones aren't softened, they may get stuck, and I'd guess if you check around you'll find cases where people had to get emergency medical treatment because of a flush gone bad. Another missing step that I've seen is the Epsom salts. I've seen procedures where this step was called "optional". I beg to differ. The Epsom salts is a necessary part of the procedure. The magnesium sulfate serves three purposes.
First, it causes an evacuation of your gut by relacing all of the sphincter muscles. This is important, because if your intestines are full of food, the oil won't have as big a reaction. What we're trying to accomplish here is a huge spasm of the gall bladder to as completely evacuate it as possible. That's why we take so much oil. But this does no good if the intestines are still of food, as the sensing of oil in the duodenum is what causes the gall bladder to contract. (I've also assisted the contractions with gall bladder massage, but that's another story.)
Secondly, the Epsom salts magnesium causes the bile ducts to relax and dilate. This allows any larger stones (if present) to pass without getting stuck. And once again, we don't want half measures on this, as you look kind of silly when you have to call 911.
So, these two steps are vital. You might as well not do a flush if you're going to skip these two steps. Yes, the Epsom salts tastes bitter. No, that's not a good reason not to take it. Thirdly, the magnesium helps to relax you so you can actually sleep with an otherwise uncomfortable feeling in the abdomen. So, these two steps (apple juice phosfood and Epsom salts) are not optional. They are important to the procedure and may help debug any lack of success that one may have had when omitting them.
Posted by Alexa (Phoenix, AZ) on 09/12/2006
[BETTER BUT NOT CURED] RE Dr. Hulda Clark's gallbladder/liver flush: While many would like to say that the gallstones obtained from a gallbladder flush are simply the products of the flush ingredients, that does not explain a few things I have experienced in performing the flush.
While fresh, more recently formed gallstones are the pea-green characteristic of new bile and might be supposed to be related to the olive oil used in the flush, there are several types of stones obtained in a flush. Tan, granular stones are also observed, as are dark-colored "pigmented" stones (pigmented by bilirubin) as well as yellow, fatty chaff.
Further, the olive-oil-stone theory does not in any way explain the presence of bile-duct flukes unseated by the cleanse. These were identified as Opisthorchis sinensis -- apparently my sushi-eating years left some souvenirs behind.
You can "explain away" stones all you want, but it's pretty hard to make olive oil into flukes complete with visible proboscis.
Posted by David (Tampa, FL) on 09/09/2006
[NAY] MR SARDI IS WAY OFF BASE. I FIRST HAD AN ULTRASOUND THAT SHOWED MY GALL BLADDER WAS SO FULL OF STONES THAT THE SMALL ONES HID THE LARGER ONES FROM VIEW. I THEN DID THE OLIVE OIL GRAPEFRUIT JUICE EPSOM SALT FLUSH. I PASSED SO MANY GREEN STONES IT WAS UNABLE TO COUNT. YOU KNOW, THE ONES SARDI CLAIMS ARE NOT STONES. WELL, I THEN HAD A SECOND ULTRA SOUND. ALL THE SMALLER STONES WERE GONE EXPOSING LARGER STONES. I SAVED THE STONES FOR THE DOCTOR. HE SAID THEY WERE A FORM OF STONES AND THEY DID NOT MELT. I DID A SECOND FLUSH AND PASSED SOME WHITE HARDER STONES. ON A THIRD FLUSH, I PASSED A HARD WHITE STONE THE SIZE OF A SMALL WALNUT AMONG OTHERS. I WILL SAY THAT I DO USE SARDI'S PRODUCTS EVEN THOUGH HE IS MISINFORMING THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE FLUSH. I AM LIVING PROOF. PLEASE NOTE, IF YOUR LIFESTYLE AND EATING HABITS DON'T CHANGE,YOU WILL CONTINUE TO PRODUCE STONES.
Replied by Melissa
Yazoo City, Mississippi
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Posted by Melva (Red Lake, ON) on 04/16/2006
[NAY] I tried the gallstone cleanse and couldn't believe the amount of "stones" and "gravel" I passed. I showed the stones to my doctor and he agreed that they were indeed gallstones. Then he suggested that another ultrasound be done and whoops! All the original stones were still sloshing around in there. So we sent some "stones" to a lab and the report came back - "These are NOT gallstones". So I have concluded that the ingredients of the cleanse form the stones, with the oil stimulating the gallbladder enough to add bile for the greenish coloring.