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Effects of Foot Bath and How to Enjoy It

足湯 効果

There are probably lots of people wondering what kinds of effects does warming their own feet bring at a foot bath?

Our feet chill very easily since they are far from our heart, but it is said that warming our feet at a foot bath brings many wonderful effects to our body!

We would like to introduce you the appeal of foot bath which promises wonderful effects, as well as ways on enjoying it.

1.What are the wonderful effects of taking a foot bath?

We introduce first the effects and advantages of taking a foot bath.

1-1. What are the 4 effects of taking a foot bath?

It is said that you can expect 4 great effects at a foot bath.

(1) Eliminates swelling

It is said that warming your toes removes swelling from your feet as it improves blood circulation.

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Swelling occurs when blood circulation is poor caused by chilling of your toes.
If the swelling worsens, it might cause walking difficulties, eventually leading to myocardial infraction and stroke, so it is desirable to keep the circulation of blood in good condition.

(2) Eliminates chills in the lower half of your body.

Foot bath is said to eliminate chills in the lower half of your body by improving blood circulation in internal organs such as the stomach.

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It is said that improving blood circulation in your toes doesn’t only affect your feet, but it also prompts blood circulation even among your internal organs. Therefore, you can expect chills to disappear in the lower half of your body.

(3) Relaxing effect

Taking a foot bath also brings relaxing effects similar to dipping yourself in a hot bathtub.

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Taking a foot bath relieves stress and provides you mental relaxation.

(4) Improves the quality of your sleep

You can expect improvement in the quality of your sleep as taking a foot bath relaxes your mind.

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Taking a foot bath is said to eliminate fatigue and swelling of the feet, therefore making your body properly relaxed and fall into a deep sleep easier.

1-2. The four advantages of taking a foot bath

It is discovered that the effects that a foot bath brings are almost similar to the ones brought by normal bathing. Here are the four advantages that you can do in a foot bath.

(1) You can remain clothed
(2) It allows you to do something else
(3) You can do it everywhere
(4) It gives little burden to your heart

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As long as you prepare a vessel and hot water, you can freely do the foot bath wherever you are, not only in the bathroom.

Since you can read books, watch TV and others while taking a foot bath, it is recommended for those who are busy and don’t have time to dip themselves in a bathtub to relax.

The wonderful benefits of taking a foot bath is that it gives little burden to the body and internal organs.

2. Effective ways of taking a foot bath

The specific effective ways of taking a foot bath are explained here.

What to prepare
- foot bath vessel (bucket, basins, etc.)
- Hot water
- Boiled water for foot bath (keep inside a pot)
- 2 to 3 bath towels

Tips
It is better to prepare a vessel with a little bit of depth for the foot bath.
Warming an acupressure point called San’inkou by soaking it in hot water is effective against chills, swelling and exhaustion, therefore improving the effectiveness of the foot bath.

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Where to locate the San’inkou acupressure point: It is located four fingertips away from your foot’s ankle.
Filling hot water into the vessel until it reaches the lower parts of your calves, as if they are hidden, is also effective in eliminating chills and swelling.

*Even if you don’t soak the San’inkou acupressure point in hot water, it doesn’t mean that the foot bath loses it effectiveness.

Ways on taking a foot bath

(1) Fill the vessel with hot water

Fill the vessel with hot water with a temperature of at least 39 to 42 °C to the vessel until it reaches the lower parts of your calves, as if the hot water hides the San’inkou acupressure point.
If you are using a shallow vessel, pour the hot water until it reaches a height in which the water won’t spill out.

*When taking a foot bath in your own room, place a towel under the vessel so that the floor won’t get wet.

(2) Put your feet into the vessel filled with hot water

It is recommended to place a towel above the vessel so that the hot water won’t cool off.

(3) Soak your feet for around 15 to 20 minutes

Pouring the boiled water from the pot adjusts the temperature of the hot water once it cooled down a little bit.
Be sure to maintain the temperature and do not allow it to change as much as possible.

Once your body becomes to feel hot, finish taking the foot bath before you begin to perspire.
Wipe your feet with a towel and make sure not to allow them to chill while wearing socks or others.

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3. Reminders when taking a foot bath

We would like to tell you some reminders when taking a foot bath, as well as some persons who should avoid taking it.

3-1. Reminders when taking a foot bath

♦ Keep the temperature constant
If the temperature drops on in between times, it would weaken the effects of the foot bath.

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Maintain the temperature of the foot bath as much as possible, because you may catch a cold otherwise.

♦ Once done, drink fluids
Drink 1 glass of water with normal temperature. Drinking water while taking the foot bath is recommended.

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♦ Do not prolong the foot bathing
If you prolong the foot bathing, it would make your body feel tired and may increase your exhaustion.
Even if it’s long, let’s tone it down to around 30 minutes.

* For those who have heart ailments and suffering from high blood pressure, wait for around 10 minutes for the hot water to cool down a little bit to 38°C and then begin taking the foot bath. Let’s extend the time and adjust the temperature while keeping an eye on them.

3-2. Persons who should avoid taking a foot bath


♦ Those who are unwell and have a fever

The symptoms may worsen as foot bath, similar to dipping yourself in a hot tub, improves your metabolism.

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Refrain from taking a foot bath if you don’t well or if you have a fever. It would be also better to refrain from taking a foot bath after taking medication as much as possible.

♦ Those who have drunk alcohol or have just taken their meal
Taking a foot bath after drinking alcohol is not recommended since it may affect your heart.

足湯 効果 飲酒後

Let’s calm down and wait for a few hours for the alcohol to go away from our body.
In addition, taking a foot bath hinders digestion after you take a meal, so let’s wait for around 30 to 1 hours to pass.

4. How to enjoy foot bath more effectively

There are two fun ways to bring out more effects from a foot bath:

♦ Use aromatic oils

By using essential oils used in aromatherapy sessions, it increases the foot bath’s relaxation effects.

足湯 効果 アロマオイル

The following are the recommended essential oils for relaxation and recovery from fatigue:
“Lavender”
“Orange”
“Jasmine” and others.

The oils recommended for the reduction of swelling are the following:
“Lemon”
“Cypress”
“Geranium” and others

足湯 効果 レモン アロマ

How to use: add 1 to 2 drops of the oil to hot water and stir.

*Be careful not to pour too much oil
Oils may cause irritation to those who have delicate skin, so try to put a single drop of oil into the water and see if it affects you.

♦ Bath salts

Bath salts are available in drug store, so you can easily purchase one.
Bath salts with “Germanium” is recommended for swollen feet.

When using bath salts, adjust its amount according to the volume of hot water.

5. Summary

foot bath doesn’t only warm your feet, but warming the lower half of your body also brings you wonderful effects such as getting rid of swollen feet, making you relaxed and others.

The wonderful advantage of taking a foot bath is that you can do it with your clothes on even while freely doing other activities.
While making ourselves relaxed with a foot bath, let’s aim to attain a swollen foot and chill-free body!


This article is translation of Japanese article, and the information listed is as of February 10, 2016 (Japan Standard Time).