Baths are beneficial and it’s a pity we don’t bother with them more often. I know I love them, but I wanted more proof as to why they’re so good for us. I found so much information; but for now, let’s just say that without a doubt, baths are beneficial! Here in the southern hemisphere at least, most of us have a quick shower, probably because it’s hotter and the idea of soaking unless it’s mid-winter just isn’t appealing. While I was in the process of trialing my BathCalm blends, I gave little samples to my friends to try out. Without fail, every single one of them said to me ‘That was so good! I need to have a bath more often!’ This led me to ponder… why don’t we ? Time? Effort? A little of column A, a little of column B? Baths really are beneficial, so without further ado, here’s 7 reasons why we should bother with them.
Reason 1 – Lose weight and lower your blood sugar level while you’re at it!
If you haven’t already heard this exciting little fact, lying in a hot bath burns as many calories as a brisk 30 minute walk. Fact. Researchers at Loughborough University conducted a study of 14 healthy, non-smoking men and measured the amount of calories they burned during a bike ride, then how many they burned during a hot bath. Unsurprisingly, the bike ride burned more calories, but a hot bath still burned 130 calories (nearly 544 kilojoules) – as much as that 30 minute brisk walk. How good is that?! Researches put this calorie loss down to the rise in the body’s core temperature. Interestingly, each participant’s blood sugar level was 10% lower after a bath as well. Scoffing chocolate followed by a hot bath? Works for me…
Reason 2 – 5 baths a week may be good for the heart
Medical News Today ran an article citing studies that showed how having 5 baths a week can improve cardio vascular health in seniors.
A team of Japanese-based scientists led by Prof. Katsuhiko Kohara, of Ehime University in Matsuyama and his team found that “hot water bathing showed a favorable effect on atherosclerotic (plaque build-up on the arteries), and central hemodynamic parameters (heart rate and cardio output).”
In layman’s terms, Prof. Kohara found that there was “an association between having regular hot baths and some indicators of better heart and circulatory health.”
He did note though that we shouldn’t be throwing parties about this just yet (or seniors into hot baths), asking us to note that “this is just an observation and might be related to other lifestyle factors, such as people who have regular baths may also be more likely to live a low-stress lifestyle, or have a healthier diet.” Which leads us to the next point.
Benefit 3 – Baths can help improve your mood
A 2018 study reported in New Scientist established that taking regular afternoon baths was associated with “a moderate but persistent lift in mood among people with depression,” and went on to say that “the size of the effect was greater than that of physical exercise – a more established mood booster.” Again, less exercise, more hot baths! They really are beneficial!
Over eight weeks, the study followed 45 participants with depression. Half of this group took a bath twice a week for 30 minutes at 400c (104 F), each time, followed by 20 minutes of being wrapped in hot blankets with hot water bottles. The other half of the group took 40 to 45 minutes of aerobic exercise twice a week. After those eight weeks, the hot bath group scored on average, six points lower on a commonly used depression scale, whereas the exercise group scored only three points lower. If I was in the exercise group, I would have felt ripped off.
In all seriousness, these statistics are worth noting, with depression at an all-time global high. And let’s face it, adding your favourite fragrance to your bath can go towards helping you feel just that wee bit better as well.
Benefit 4 – Get your glow on
Open up those pores, give them a good steam and clean that skin! Everyone gets that soft smooth glow on their skin after a warm bath and we feel so much the better for it!
Benefit 5 – Feeling fluey?
Soaking in a warm bath for 10 – 15 minutes can really make a difference when you’re feeling unwell. A hot bath acts as a really effective decongestant. It steams your nasal passages and letting that mucous flow baby. Gross? Yes. Does it feel better though? Hell yes!
Benefit 6 – Smell delish and sleep well!
Ever heard of a “circadian rhythm?” According to the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, circadian rhythms are “physical, mental, and behavioral changes that follow a daily cycle…that respond primarily to light and darkness in an organism’s environment”. It turns out that our circadian rhythm is also highly attuned to our body’s temperature. So, when our body cools down after having a hot bath, our circadian rhythm kicks in. We start to feel sleepy and ready for bed.
By adding your favourite relaxing essential oils to your bath, such as lavender, chamomile or bergamot, you get a double dose of sleepy. I felt tired just typing that…
Benefit 7 – We can recycle!
And the final of the 7 reasons why baths are beneficial and why we should bother to take them…we can reuse the water! Scoop it out with your bucket and chuck it over your garden or pot plants (watch out for the cat) – it doesn’t have to go straight down the drain!
It all adds up!
So there you have it! What are you waiting for? Give yourself something to look forward to and promise yourself a lovely hot bath (or a warm one, if you’re a lightweight) in the not too distant future. Plan your fragrance, plan your music or just buy one of BathCalm’s beautiful blends as we’ve done all the work for you, depending on what mood you’re in!
But I don’t have a bath!
Don’t have a bath? Then organise to go stay with a family member or friend who does. Because everyone deserves to feel that relaxed!