There is no single factor limiting the average person's energy level more than adrenal disfunction. Environmental toxins, lack of dietary nutrients and stress all take a toll on our adrenal health and thus, the ability of our adrenals to produce the critical metabolism-supporting hormones epinephrine (adrenaline), norepinephrine and aldosterone. Put simply, you will not feel or perform well when those hormones are not present in proper levels. Adrenal support is a core intention of the Synchro Life Design System, and this regimen with Himalayan salt probably supports adrenal function better than any other single practice.
What's the technique? Well...fundamentally, it's just drinking salty water. But when you drink salty water strategically, the effects can be powerful. And, of course, Himalayan salt is very different than traditional table salt. The unique properties of this specific salt allow it to nourish the body in a way that is hard to achieve any other way.
What Exactly Is Himalayan Salt?
Himalayan Salt is a unique type of sea salt mined from ancient sea beds at a specific site in the Punjabi region of Pakistan. It supplies an astonishing 83 unique trace minerals. There are 21 trace minerals that are widely agreed upon to be necessary for the body's metabolic processes. Most biochemists agree that there are very likely several (even dozens) more that the body will use when available. Most of the 83 trace minerals found in Himalayan salt are extremely rare (if not impossible) to find in food. Because Himalayan salt is mined from 200 million year-old sea beds, it is completely free of the heavy metals and other toxins that show up in sea salts harvested from today's oceans.
Step One: Morning Salt Flushes
The morning salt flush is essentially just drinking a big glass of moderately-salty water immediately after getting out of bed, followed by a big glass of lightly salty water. For the first glass of water, I do ~30oz of (high quality) water combined with 1.5oz of Himalayan salt brine (see recipe below). Drink this first glass relatively quickly. For the second glass, use 30oz of water to 3/4oz of brine (4.5 tsp). Take your time with the second glass, but do finish it before you put any other food or liquid in your body.
Alternate recipe: 1.5tsp of granulated himalayan salt is approximately equal to 1oz of brine. So you can stir 3tsp of granulated salt into 32oz water for a full-on flush -or- 1.5tsp into 32oz water for a non-flush dose of salt and minerals.
Reason 1: Saving Your Adrenals In The Morning
This morning salt flush does a few really powerful things in the body. First, it reduces demand on the adrenals first thing in the morning. When we wake up in the morning our body naturally wants to raise our blood pressure. This raise in blood pressure ensures we get adequate blood to our brain when we transition from laying down to standing (so we don't black out). More generally, the increase in blood pressure will jump-start all of the body's systems that are relatively stagnant when we're sleeping. Problem is, to raise blood pressure, the brain calls on the adrenals to pump out adrenaline. This is a big task for your adrenals first thing in the morning, and can stress them quite a bit (particularly if they are chronically operating below 100%). This is why doing the flush immediately after getting out of bed is critical. The longer you wait to do the flush, the more your adrenals have to work. Drinking salt water first thing in the morning subverts this system by slightly raising your blood pressure for a short period of time. This means your adrenals will have to do less of the work in raising blood pressure, thus saving their output for the rest of your day. This technique produces some pretty amazing results - you will notice your energy levels staying higher throughout the rest of your day if you do this.
Reason 2: Clean Your GI System
The second thing the salt flush does is provide your GI system with a powerful detox first thing in the morning. Clearing out stagnant matter from your GI tract allows your digestive system to function more efficiently - absorbing more nutrition while requiring less of your body's energy resources. Be warned, however, as this is definitely a cleanse of sorts and you will clear some material out, especially in the first week or so. But in reality, you'll feel so amazing doing this regimen, I don't think you'll really mind the cleanse.
Reason 3: Full Hydration
The other important thing this morning salt water technique does is fully hydrate the body. This is so important and yet so overlooked by most people. We lose a significant amount of water through respiration and perspiration during sleep. As such, you're almost guaranteed to wake up in the morning dehydrated. Fully hydrating your body in the morning before you put any other food or liquid in your stomach is a hugely powerful practice in itself. Hydrating first thing in the morning improves digestion, flushes out toxins, improves mental performance and (very noticeably) improves skin. People tend to think of water being the only component of hydration, but electrolytes and minerals play just as critical of a role. Drinking water with himalayan salt actually allows your body to hydrate more completely.
A NOTE: Over time, daily flushes have an impact on gut flora. I recommend flushing every day for a week to start, then cutting back to once or twice a week thereafter. I DO absolutely recommend drinking a bunch of lightly salty water every morning. Drinking your first 32oz of water at the same recipe as your second (3/4oz brine to 31oz water) will give you all of the adrenal-support benefits without inducing a full GI flush.
Step Two: Drinking Your Water Salty
As I mentioned above, water is only one component of the hydration equation. We need electrolytes and minerals in our water for the body to me able to use it optimally. Almost all of the water we drink doesn't have nearly the mineral content our bodies need. Drinking water with inadequate mineral content will actually pull minerals out of our body, further adding to our chronic deficiencies. Drinking your water slightly salty fixes this problem. Shoot for water around .5 to 1oz of brine to 30oz of water.
Fixing Your Mineral Deficiencies
Our hormone system, adrenals very much included, requires a big set of minerals to operate properly and produce all of our many hormones in optimal levels. Many of these minerals are quite difficult to get via food, and a lot of us have chronic deficiencies. Fortunately, himalayan salt is a great source of a lot of these hard-to-get minerals your body needs. Drinking this salt water every day will slowly replenish these minerals in your body over time. Interestingly, a lot of people actually start to crave himalayan salt in their first few days of a regimen like this one. The thought here is that your body is recognizing the salt as a source of these minerals it has been lacking and triggering cravings accordingly.
For some people these cravings might also be for salt, of all things. Sodium plays a critical role in every cell in our body, and the adrenals are particularly dependent on adequate levels of sodium for proper functioning. Many "healthy" people misguidedly avoid salt and sodium in their foods and drink a lot of water (with inadequate mineral content), which further strips the body of sodium. As a result, sodium deficiency is way more common than you would think, mostly in people trying to eat healthy.
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Graham Ryan is the creator and lead writer for Synchro Life. Biochemist and nutritionist by training. Athlete, yoga teacher and relentless experimenter by obsession. Google