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Valentine’s Day Detoxification

Toxins – Better out than in! – Swee Boon Chai

Contrary to what you may have thought on reading the title of this post, I love Valentine’s Day and all those other “Hallmark created holidays”. Maybe there are some people who do need to be reminded to spoil their loved ones and remind them that they are, in fact, loved. For the rest who do not; why not use this day as an excuse to celebrate the love that is present in your life? There is so much hate, anger, aggression, disease, strife, irritability, impatience, arrogance and all that construes “ugliness” in this world that I embrace a day that is aimed at spreading and celebrating some love.

The argument that the day saddens singles is silly. Do women that are not mother’s hate Mother’s Day? Or non-Irish people tirade against having a few too many beers on St Patrick’s Day? Or do people purposefully try to bring in the New Year in a miserable state? Yes, some do so by attending or hosting a big party, some enjoy a dinner, others a relaxed night in with Chinese take-away. But, I do not know of anyone who tries to be miserable and if they do, they are pitiable.

I suppose my enthusiasm for holidays and celebrations of any kind is hereditary. I have written before that every single year my ma has hosted themed and fully planned parties for both of us – well until we our 21st’s anyway. From there the responsibility has fallen on us but the tradition remains. On Valentine’s Day every single year my ma decorates the entire kitchen with red ribbons, and glitter and hearts and makes a special breakfast. Our school lunch boxes would contain no food, just chocolates of all kinds and a love note. (Ah, the endearing love letter. One of my other, well, loves.)

The point is, Valentine’s Day is not only for couples but for everyone to celebrate that they are loved by – and love in return – their friends, family and even pets. Cherish it and delight in that spirit for all the days following.

For Valentine’s Day this year I decided to DIY a little gift for my ma. Making pretty and clever crafty things is her and my sister’s area of expertise but I think she will appreciate my attempt.

IMG_20130213_210017To trivialise her experiences in the love department: she has not had it easy. Having my dad deceive her for many years and leave her and their two daughters with nothing is scratching the surface of this chronicle. She has had some years to cleanse herself of this pain and disappointment but I think the detoxifying process is still far from over.


1.  to counteract or destroy the toxic properties of

2.  to remove the effects of poison from

I believe the detoxification process is an integrated one. The body, the mind and the spirit needs to partake in and revel in this process. The most obvious and I suppose the easiest level for most to work on is the physical. A cleanse or a fast can aid weight loss, improve the condition of the skin, help digestion and in general  energise and vitalise.  A deeper transformation of the self, incorporating the mind and the spirit takes time, dedication and work. Hard work. There is a link though; detoxifying old emotional patterns will greatly improve the physical detox.

Based on the fact that fasting and purification techniques have been used for centuries as aids to spiritual advancement I made her a little detox pack for the bath, which is where I know she does most of her spiritual detoxification. The mind and the body connecting to accomplish one goal.


Ma, I love you and hope your detoxification process is progressing well. You know I am always here to listen and make tea whilst you work through the mind part of it all (although I do realise I am a little impatient but only because I think you deserve better and because I hate seeing you constantly trying to come to terms with something which might never make sense).

In the meantime, here are your instructions for your Detox Bath (along with the health benefits which will be realised):


1.   Take forty minutes out of your ridiculously busy and productive day. Take some time for yourself. I recommend this time not only because it  takes twenty minutes for your body to remove the toxins and then twenty minutes for absorbing the minerals in the water but because you need more than two minutes to focus on just you. Time alone is paramount to mental and emotional well-being.

2.   Fill, yes fill  (this is no time to be frugal), the bath with warm water.

3.   Add two cups of the mixture of Epsom salts and sodium bicarbonate from the tin.

  • Magnesium is not easily absorbed through the digestive track but can be absorbed through your skin by soaking in a bath with Epsom salts (scientific name is hydrated magnesium sulfate).
  • Soaking in Epsom salts helps to replenish the body’s magnesium levels whilst the sulfate flushes toxins and helps form proteins in brain tissue and joints.
  • Magnesium is the second most abundant element in human cells and the fourth most important positively charged ion in the body.
  • Most people are deficient in this mineral which keeps enzyme activity regular in your body, and it helps your bodily functions to run smoothly, including eliminating harmful toxins.
  • The medical benefits seem endless (improved heart health, flushes toxins, eliminates muscle pain, improved nerve function because of the electrolyte regulation, necessary to retain proper calcium levels in blood, relieves stress as magnesium binds adequate amounts of serotonin – the mood-elevating chemical – in the brain which creates a feeling o well-being and relaxation, improved oxygen use, improved absorption of nutrients, prevention or easing of migraines).
  • Baking soda is known for its cleansing ability and has anti-fungal properties too (people who suffer from thrush or other yeast skin infections such as eczema can bathe in baking soda to alleviate these symptoms)
  • Baking soda neutralises lactic acid in the muscles, perfect for aches and pains after tough training/exercise sessions.
  • In addition, bicarb softens the skin.

4.   Add the Evening Primrose Bath Oil. I know this is your favourite and the benefits of this oil are well documented.

5. Add aromatherapy oils. There are so many to choose from but I chose two to experiment with for now:

  • Lavender: With its calming effects, this oil eases anxiety and is a natural sleeping aid. The oil is also anti-bacterial, not to mention that it has a lovely aroma.
  • Eucalyptus: a highly anti-septic oil which has been used for years to remedy everything from flu, fever and sore throat to skin and muscle pain. It is a very popular oil to relieve sinus and lung congestion such as asthma. In addition the oil is especially appropriate for skin eruptions and oily complexions, it is used to clear acne and chicken pox. The scent increases brain wave activity and counters physical and mental fatigue. (So, basically it can help fight everything we do suffer from.)

(Based on the above two points, the eucalyptus oil will be perfect for a morning bath and the lavender  for use after a long stressful day.) 

6.   You can also gently rub your body with a loofah – this will help stimulate the lymphatic system which will aid with the release of the toxins.

7.   Drink plenty of water.

8.   Soak. Indulge. Read. Think positive thoughts. Relax. Rejuvenate. Restore.

“The cure of the part should not be attempted without the cure of the whole. No attempt should be made to cure the body without the soul, and if the head and body are to be healthy, you must begin by curing the mind. That is the first thing. Let no one persuade you to cure the head until he has first given you his soul to be cured. For this is the great error of our day in the treatment of the human body, that physicians first separate the soul from the body.” -Plato

PS. I bought you some shoes too because, well, if all else fails – retail therapy!


PSS. I have joined Instagram, my user name is femmegypsy if you would like to follow.


4 thoughts on “Valentine’s Day Detoxification

  1. All – please read this and share real love as I felt it right down in my soul. Thank you Tam the effort leaves me speechless but my heart SO FILLED WITH LOVE xxx

    Posted by Elvira Nel | February 14, 2013, 7:56 AM
  2. Tamsin, your article is really really good. Not only is it worthy of being in a high street ‘caring’ magazine; it is heartfelt, considerate, personal and speaks of the strong bond of love that you and your sister share with your mom. It also shows what an amazing mother you have; the values she has instilled and the lengths she goes to, to look after her girls. I would start taking your work to publishers ..

    Posted by peter | February 25, 2013, 11:27 PM
    • Hi Pete, thank you so much for your kind comment! I am so glad that you could feel the emotions I was trying to convey. I do have an amazing mother! And sister, thanks to her! My dream is to have my work published one day, any tips or contacts? Research and sharing what I find through writing is my absolute passion.

      Posted by femmegypsy | February 26, 2013, 12:20 PM


  1. Pingback: Musing Monthly Matters: February 2013 | femmegypsy - February 27, 2013

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