Is Abu Dhabi’s first salt therapy room a gimmicky trend or a natural way of treating health concerns?
What is salt therapy?
No, salt therapy doesn’t involve eating spoonfuls of the crystalline mineral; this is far more therapeutic than that.
Today’s salt therapy is a modern version of an Eastern European tradition where people chilled out in natural salt caves to improve their overall wellbeing.
The ancient practice – also known as halotherapy, derived from the Greek word for salt, ‘alas’ – is said to help improve constriction of our airways, easing symptoms like coughing, wheezing and asthma.
Himalayan salt, in particular, is also said to have anti-bacterial and anti-microbial effects, be a natural moisturiser and aid in detoxification, making it a great way to combat respiratory conditions, alleviate stress and treat skin conditions.
It seems overall, salt is a pretty powerful mineral.
How does it work?
Much like a zen room, the salt therapy room at House of Nature is dimly lit, with a wall of pink Himalayan salt bricks, a line of comfy lounge chairs and a floor made of ground Himalayan salt, giving a natural, beachy feel to the room.
A multi-purpose space, the room is used for various services including massages, meditation and even yoga. A vent in the room blows out salt-infused air.
Don’t worry, the particles are tiny so you won’t be sitting in a cloud of salt or be left covered in crystals.
House of Nature is a holistic, natural wellness centre with a certified ayurvedic specialist, Dr Shiji Santhosh.
So first, you’ll have a consultation to make sure that salt therapy is a suitable treatment for your health concerns.
Following my consultation, Dr Shiji prescribes a 30-minute arm and leg massage to aid relaxation while inhaling the salt particles to help with my hay fever.
This is followed by 30 minutes of guided breathing techniques and meditation – with the help of yoga therapist Sowjanya Gopidi – on the salt surface to reduce stress.
Was it effective?
After the hour, I’m certainly reluctant to leave and my body has melted as the tension has lifted.
It’s hard to say if this is the result of the salt therapy or just taking an hour out of my day to focus on relaxation, a rare occurrence in my life. Perhaps it is a mixture of the two, but the treatment is certainly therapeutic.
As far as treating my hay fever goes, I’ll be returning regularly in the hope of seeing more of an improvement, particularly as the weather starts to turn.
From AED 105 for group yoga, AED 150 for self discovery session, AED 250 for private yoga class. Villa 11, near Central Bank of UAE, Marfa Al Bateen Street. Daily 9am-9.30pm.
To find out more, contact: 02 585 7580, honuae.com
WORDS Rachael Perrett