Recently a friend visited a spa and chose one of their rejuvenating packages. The process involved a regular massage followed by a full body mud-pack. She said that she was not too comfortable being covered by mud and was unsure about the result. But after the initial hesitation, she was glad she went ahead. These were her words – “This was one of the most relaxing experiences I’ve had and I didn’t expect mud to be so soothing.”
This was nothing but the practical application of mud therapy.
What exactly is mud therapy and how does it work?
Mud therapy is a natural therapy, which uses mud for improvement of health and treat disorders. Mud is utilized in different forms to throw out waste and toxic matter from within. It not only treats diseases but also provides strength and energy to our own body and improves its immunity and strengthens vitality
Mud(earth) is one of the 5 elements of nature. It possesses a unique characteristic of being able to retain hot and cold effect of the body. This is because of the high mineral content, which easily stores the heat releasing it slowly to the body when used (to know more on the science behind this click here).
Also its dark colour helps absorbing the different colours of light and transferring its properties to the body (To know more about benefits of colours click here).
Mahatma Gandhi who was amongst the pioneers of mud therapy used to say “Heal this idol of earth(our body) with earth”
The different types of mud that are used in mud therapy are:
- Clay or potters mud
- Mud found at bottom of river or well
- Farm mud free from chemicals
- Multani mitti or fullers earth
- Ochre – A type of clay which becomes very soft as water is poured. This does not have pebbles or limestone crystals
- Pindol – A type of very soft clay. Sand is mixed with this before use
- Black clay
Preparation of clay for mud packs
Clay or mud cannot be used as is. Some initial preparations are required:
- First place the clay in sunlight till it is completely dry
- It should be pulverized, crushed and pebbles and stones should be sieved out
- Store this in an airtight container
- Before using, water should be added 1/2 to 1 hr prior to using it
- Once used it should not be reused till it is sun dried
According to Ayurveda and Naturopathy mud therapy has the following benefits
- It rejuvenates the body by helping it regain all elements in a balanced amount.
- It helps relieve aches, pains and stress.
- It helps in detoxifying the body.
- It is useful to heal wounds.
- It helps in relieving urinary and gastric problems
- It activates intestinal and abdominal functions
Practical application of this therapy is in the form of mud packs, poultices, mud bath, clay therapy and barefoot walking.
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