The Science Of Salt Lamps…

The Science Of Salt Lamps

In the back of the yoga studio where I teach there is a Himalayan Salt Lamp that we turn on during classes. Its glow is like marmalade met peach and they melted together under the warmth of the bulb inside the lamp. It adds to the ambiance, especially for the evening classes, but are salt lamps just pretty links to nature sitting on our desk or is it possible they offer health benefits, as well?

SEE ALSO: How To See The Beauty In Every Moment

What is a Salt Lamp?

A salt lamp is a piece of Himalayan salt that has been hollowed out to house and embrace the heat emitted from a small light bulb. Salt lamps come in many different sizes and you want to purchase one that is made from pure Himalayan salt.

Ions: The Negative and Positive

Salt lamp manufacturers and many salt lamp users claim that there are health benefits to salt lamps because of the negative ions they emit. And, while they do emit negative ions, the salt lamps, by themselves, do not produce the negative ions.

Salt, by its own nature, attracts water.

It is the added element of heat that causes this water to evaporate creating the negative ions. Negative ions are naturally found in nature near waterfalls and oceans and before rain storms. These are sources that generally make us feel very peaceful. My spirit is always renewed by being near an ocean. Whether that feeling is attributed to negative ions or the beauty of the moment is irrelevant when I am standing in front those waves mesmerized by their movement and sound.

“Normal ion counts in fresh country air is 2,000-4,000 negative ions per cubic centimeter. At a large water fall you might find over 100,000 negative ions. Polluted air such as in large cities might have less than 100 ions.”  (

Positive ions are emitted by technology like computers, cell phones, microwaves. There have been many claims that these items are detrimental to our health and Dr. Oz has stated on his show that cell phones should be at least five feet away from where you are sleeping.

Mold, bacteria and pollution are also bad for our quality of life, and all carry positive charges. Positive ions are absorbed into our body as free radicals and cause cell damage and premature aging. The negative ions pair up with the positive ions and help cleanse the air.

The Salt Lamp Claim: Truth or Myth

Salt lamp companies claim the negative ions created from the heated salt lamp will neutralize the positive ions in the air in your space. It is true that the evaporation of the attracted water combined with heat will produce negative ions. The rest may be up to you to decide.

A few various websites stated the following:

*The [salt] lamps do not produce enough of these ions to make a difference. (

*On the contrary, ” Dr. Albert P. Krueger, a microbiologist and experimental pathologist at the University of California, found that an astonishingly small quantity of negative ions could KILL bacteria and quickly take them out of the air so they were less likely to infect people. A separate series of scientific studies elsewhere show that Salt Lamps and salt tea lights can increase the negative ion count by up to 300%!” (

*The lamp will help neutralize the air if placed right next to your computer (

*A study was done on babies with respiratory issues. The babies in rooms with negative ions added fared better than those without (

*Some people think salt lamps are a hoax while others claim they feel and breathe better due to their salt lamps.

Generally, you can find whichever answer you are looking for if you just go to Google. I am partial to that last point, though, because a positive placebo effect (if that’s what it is) is valuable. If anything, can we attribute the calming claims of the salt lamp users to the Law of Attraction? They think the salt lamp is beautiful and that it brings peace and calm and those are the thoughts they put out to the Universe and…so it does.

Take it With a Grain of Salt

I have two salt lamps in my house.

I like the looks of them, I like the feel of them and, whether studies have wasted money to prove this or not, I set my intention that there are healing benefits to the lamp as I turn it on. In my world, everything stems from intention. My yoga practices begin with an intention, my Reiki offerings are ensconced with a healing intention, and my verbiage to myself is prefaced with intention.

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “A good intention clothes itself with sudden power. ”

The next time you turn on a salt lamp, pause and imagine yourself clothed with sudden power…the power to manifest what you need in your world- even negative ions.


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