I’m a smart, debonair type of guy (that’s what is says on my Twitter bio, anyway) and I always thought all the amazing things I heard about salt lamps were a ton of unscientific rubbish. I mean, we’re talking about a big chunk of salt, right? And even if there were some health benefits to salt lamps, salt is salt – what difference does it make if it comes from a mountain? I stood firm in this belief right until I saw what a Himalayan salt lamp did for my nephew.
He came to stay with us for a few days. He told us he was plagued by allergic rhinitis. The name is a bit terrifying – especially if you’ve ever read Kafka – but all it really means is that he would sometimes go on sneezing for hours on end. We were mortified that our filthy flat kept setting him off.
After cleaning out every single speck of dust, hair, and belly button fluff in our home, our nephew was still in no better shape. Desperate, I remembered sneering my way through various conversations about Himalayan salt lamps. Hadn’t someone claimed a salt lamp had helped with her allergies? I got on Amazon Prime and had one at our doorstep in minutes.
Color me surprised, but somehow it worked. Feel free to be skeptical. I was, even after I saw the effect it had on Sir Sneezealot. I even turned it off and on to see the effects on my guinea pig, I mean, nephew. It’s quite mind-boggling but his symptoms DID ease up whenever I would fire up the Himalayan salt lamp, and crept back when I turned it off.
So now you’re looking at a newly converted fan who’ll share with you everything I’ve since learned about Himalayan salt lamp health benefits.
How salt lamps work — negative ions
It’s no coincidence that people feel at one with the universe while standing beside a thundering waterfall, a windy ridge, or on the beach with the waves riding high in the background. If you can close your eyes and try to recall similar experiences — that feeling after a thunderstorm, or when you’re outside and thunder hits somewhere nearby — you may remember the electric feeling that goes with these experiences.
You feel energized and buoyed. Rejuvenated and cleansed. Remember?
This is the effect of Mother Nature producing negative ions and releasing them into the air. There have been many scientific papers about the positive effects of negative ions. For example, plants in certain areas grow faster because of their exposure to negative ions.
But what about humans?
- Negative ions neutralize free radicals (which cause cancer)
- Negative ions revitalize cell metabolism
- Negative ions boost the immune system
- Negative ions purify the blood and lymphatic system of the body
- Negative ions balance the autonomic nervous system
We don’t have to fly kites in lightning storms to get our daily dose of negative ions – that’s where Himalayan salt lamps come in.
Where do Himalayan salt lamps come from?
From Arkansas. Next question.
Seriously though, real Himalayan salt lamps are mined from deep in the mines of Khewra, Pakistan. Khewra is located at the western edge of the Himalayan mountains.
These salt mines were formed millions of years ago when light and energy dried up the primal ocean. An ancient inland sea evaporated and left behind these mineral salt deposits. The earth shifted and the seabed was sealed and buried under great pressure. The tectonic plates shifted further pushing up and forming the Himalayan mountains.
It is said that Khewra, the largest mine of six, holds 6.7 billion tons of salt. The miners go down 1500 meters down to harvest these salt lamps by hand.
And they’re happy and content. Very much so. A side effect they say of working in the salt mines.
Now let’s try to cover all the benefits of salt lamps to humans.
Himalayan Salt Lamp Health Benefits
If you don’t have one in your home yet, it’s time for you to get one.
Himalayan salt lamps –
#1 – Reduce or totally eradicate allergy attacks
This appears to be the case with the nephew. Genuine salt lamps reduce allergens and irritants in the air caused by dust, pollen, mildew, and pet fluff.
#2 – Cleanse the air in your room
We have an ever-increasing number of electric appliances and devices in our homes from the dryer to the washer, to the electric wires running through our walls and the wifi that’s always on. A salt lamp helps clear out the resulting electro-smog that is nowadays typical in many homes.
#3 – Promote better sleep
Positive ions are produced by everyday electronic devices. It’s ironic but scientifically speaking, positive ions are harmful while negative ions are beneficial to human health. Positive ions cause allergies, stress, and insomnia.
If you have difficulty sleeping, try getting a Himalayan salt lamp. Set the dimmer to the lowest setting if you are sensitive to light during sleeping.
#4 – Boost immunity and eases coughing
I sometimes think of my salt lamp as being similar to those janitor fish in an aquarium. Both clean up the pollutants in its environment.
When a Himalayan salt lamp is turned on, it absorbs water, particulates, and moisture from the air. It binds excess positive ions with their negative ions. As the salt lamp heats up, it releases cleansed water vapor back into the room expelling negative ions along the way. As we breathe, it increases our cilial activity and helps keep our lungs clear.
#5 – Energize and alleviate fatigue and depression
Positive ions and everyday stresses can be draining and result in depression, insomnia, and fatigue. If you want a pharma-free solution, buy a salt lamp. Apart from all the other effects on the body already discussed, it also gives a boost of serotonin – the body’s happy hormones.
#6 – Soothe and relax
Did you know? Himalayan salt lamps come in different colors like orange, pink, and white, with white as the rarest. The color depends on the vein that the salt lamp was mined from.
According to experts, the wavelengths of salt colors are within the 600-700 nanometer range. This range produces soothing and relaxing effects on the body.
And science aside, a lit salt lamp is simply beautiful. It feels totally relaxing to have one in the room with you.
Just ask this little kitty.
Now read our article on the Best Salt Lamps and see which one’s right for you.
Author: Mary Lou
In the Before Times, Maru spent vacations traveling and making stops at showrooms to test the latest massage chair models. Nowadays, she’s hunkered down in her small sunlit home dotted with her ever-growing collection of fiddle fig trees, indoor plants, and Himalayan salt lamps. Find her at LinkedIn.