Take a mindful self-care journey along the Colorado Historic Hot Springs Loop.
For centuries, cultures around the globe have been drawn to geothermal water. These natural resources are still used to enhance wellness and boost immune systems. Resorts along the Colorado Historic Hot Springs Loop give guests the opportunity to reset and rejuvenate the body and mind.
The formal term for the practice of thermal bathing for health purposes is called balneology. It’s a wonderful way to improve overall wellbeing. Not only are there physical benefits but also mental advantages. Regular soaks are thought to reduce the symptoms of arthritis, asthma, depression, fibromyalgia, skin conditions and sleep disorders.
Let’s break it down into three basic components: water, heat and minerals.
The human body is made up of about 60% H2O so aquatic immersion seems like a natural thing to do. Hydrotherapy is used in a variety of ways to help increase mobility. When floating in a pool, buoyancy cushions joints and encourages muscles to decompress. This provides an ideal environment for low-resistance movement.
For some serenity, find a remote spot and focus on the sound of a trickling waterfall – it automatically calms the mind.
Deep within the earth, magma heats pockets of water which then rises to the surface through fissures. This forms a hot spring.
Submerging in warm water is relaxing and simply feels good. Slightly elevating the body’s temperature can stimulate circulation which in turn increases blood flow. Breaking a sweat helps remove toxins and can even burn calories. Breathing will be easier, too, because steam can clear sinuses and open airways.
Soaking in super-saturated minerals enables the body to absorb these nutrients through the skin. Each hot spring has a unique mix of elements when it percolates through different layers of rock. Hot Springs of America lists common minerals found in these waters and how they help promote good health.
- Boron encourages healthy bone development and building muscle mass. It helps manage arthritis and osteoporosis, and boosts brain activity.
- Calcium promotes healthy bone growth. Maintaining proper levels of calcium reduces chances of colon and breast cancer.
- Chloride is essential for the proper balance of body fluids. An electrolyte, it helps maintain proper blood volume, blood pressure and pH.
- Fluoride promotes hardness and stability of bones and teeth.
- Iron increases resistance to stress and disease, as well as preventing fatigue. It also promotes healthy skin, hair and nails.
- Lithium has a calming and mood-stabilizing effect. It promotes brain health and alleviates depression.
- Magnesium is important for the breakdown of fatty acids and cholesterol. It helps maintain hormone levels, along with regulating heartbeat and blood pressure.
- Manganese also assists in the breakdown of fats and cholesterol. It contributes to healthy bone metabolism and growth.
- Nitrogen is needed to make proteins in muscles, skin, hair and nails.
- Phosphate is critical for energy storage and metabolism. It assists in kidney, muscle and nerve function.
- Potassium reduces high blood pressure and cholesterol. It is also vital for heart and kidney health.
- Silica is not considered an essential nutrient, but studies have shown that it can prevent the thinning of hair and plays a vital role in assisting calcium in bone growth.
- Sodium is another electrolyte that is necessary to maintain the body’s fluids system. It also plays a pivotal role in enzyme operations, plus nerve and muscle functions.
- Sulfate is a compound found in every cell of the human body. It helps relieve nasal congestion and is essential for production of collagen and maintaining healthy skin, hair and nails. It also helps flush toxins and purify the body.
- Zinc helps with proper functioning of the immune and digestive systems. It plays a key role in thyroid function and healthy vision.
For a geothermal pilgrimage, make the trek to these mountain towns: