Salt lamps are the latest wellness trend, but are the health benefits claims actually real?

There are so many different ways that we can take care of our bodies. Although there are many tried and true behaviors that promote healthy living, there are far more wellness trends that are untested but still claim to improve our wellbeing. One of the most recent trends is Himalayan salt lamps. This funky-looking lamp reportedly has a lot of health benefits to offer us because of the negative ions it is said to emit.

The lamps have been said to improve air quality, therefore making it easier to sleep. It is also supposed to help tame allergies and asthma, boost our mood and energy levels, and help people who struggle with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or depression. But, is this too good to be true? Can a lamp really help with all of those problems?

Dr. Svetlana Kogan, who specializes in holistic and integrative medicine, says that while these lamps are certainly pretty, they are probably not a cure-all for your health “There has been some talk in the holistic community about the fact that electromagnetic radiation from cell phones, from microwaves, from computers, creates positive ionization of our body,” Kogan said. “The talk has been that the negative ions supposedly produced by the lamps help to neutralize the positive charge. But to be honest with you… I haven’t seen any large studies that would confirm this.”

Kogan said that if a health product sounds too good to be true, it probably is. “Whenever somebody is promising you the world, it starts sounding very suspicious to me,” Kogan said. Many people still claim that these lamps help with asthma or allergies by purifying the air. “I have never once in my career recommended a salt lamp to a patient,” allergist Dr. Julie Kuriakose said. “I’m not saying it doesn’t work; it’s just not very well-studied.” Even though there is certainly skepticism, the connection between salt and respiratory problems isn’t so far-fetched. “In theory, where salt goes, water goes,” Dr. Kuriakose said. “You can somehow thin out mucus (with salt). But with salt lamps, I don’t think the data is there.” So, even though they may not be proven to work, these lamps may be worth a try. You can buy one of these lamps at a variety of places for under $20, so why not try it out and see for yourself?


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