Science Backs Ancient Wisdom on Salt Lamps
Updated: Apr 7
Without question, health is your most important form of wealth. Without a strong and well-tuned body that can withstand the test of time and the rigors of living, how can you expect to enjoy all the other wonders of life? Most people, of course, would answer with an unequivocal “yes” if asked whether they wanted to protect their health, and we’re sure you’re among them. Well, good news: One of the best things you can do to protect yourself is to buy a salt lamp. You’ve probably heard of them, however, you might not be clear on exactly what they can do for you – or whether you really should get one.
Salt Lamps: Fabulous Chemistry
First, a throwback to high school science class. The basic makeup of an atom includes protons and neutrons stuck together in a nucleus, while electrons orbit outside. When an atom has a full complement of electrons, which varies by element, the atom is happy and stable. However, when an electron flies off and becomes attached to other atoms, they creative negatively charged ions …
or atoms with an extra electron. These ions want to return to stable, so they look for other molecules to attach themselves.
Salt lamps operate on an other scientific principle as well, that of hygroscopy. The word refers to a material’s propensity to attract water molecules, and salt always attracts water. The main outcome is that the salt lamp attracts a lot of oxygen atoms to which extra electrons can attach, creating those negative ions. As the salt lamp warms up from the bulb inside, it attracts more and more water, and creates further ions through the photoelectric effect, which is when the emission of light through a material knocks extra electrons off the atoms within it.
"One of the best things you can do to protect yourself is to buy a Himalayan salt lamp".
Regulate Breathing and Reduce Coughing
These negative ions are beneficial, because in their hunt to once again find stability, they attach to a number of unhealthy particles in the air, including dust, smoke, pollen, and even bacteria. Once attached, they neutralize the threat. Many people suffer year-round from these substances, dealing with coughing, asthma, congestion, itchy eyes and other symptoms you might recognize from your own life. Plus, negative ions help combat mold as well, as serious health detriment in many households.
All the negative ions created by salt lamps are also a good way to combat the ill effects caused by the constant use of technology. While a wonderful thing in a vacuum, technology in practice generates a large number of positive ions, which diminish lung function and make coughing and breathing troubles even more likely. These positive ions can, of course, be counteracted by the negative ions produced by a salt lamp.
Combat the Detriments of Radiation
Their ability to generate negative ions also means that salt lamps can combat electromagnetic radiation (EMF), which is produced by cell phone signals, wi-fi routers and television sets as well as outside structures such as cell towers. This radiation causes a field in which you are constantly enmeshed, especially when close to technology.
While you can’t do anything about the existence of EMF radiation in the world, you can protect your body from it with a salt lamp. Negative ions help limit your exposure to electric radiation by regulating your own bio-electric field and making sure it is at healthy levels. Doing so can combat much of the harm of being exposed to radiation, such as stress, fatigue, low immunity and even cancer.
A Caveat About Negative Ions: You Need a LOT!
It’s important to understand, however, that salt lamps are a relatively weak source of negative ions. Compared to, say, a thunderstorm or a huge waterfall – both of which generate substantial amounts of them, which explains why people often feel so refreshed in their presence – your salt lamp can only do so much. However, they are one of the best sources of negative ions out there, especially for their cost and ease of use.
So how do you make the most of them? It’s wise to put a salt lamp in every room. In the case of offices or family rooms, put the lamps close to where you work to counteract the effects of technology. In the bathroom they make a perfect nightlight. In bedrooms, put them right next to the bed, they're bright enough to use as a reading lamp. Blanket your house with them, and you might be surprised how much better you feel in just a few short weeks!