The Healing Power of the Sea

Lisa Kauai

If I could turn back time, and I had to go through the acute stage of fluoroquinolone toxicity again, I would forego 90% of the doctors’ appointments and I would head straight for the beach. Really–I’m not joking at all. The times that I’ve spent at the beach, and, specifically, in the ocean, have been incredibly healing for me. The sea has given me significant symptom-relief, and I have felt great progress in my healing every time I have visited the ocean post-flox.

The sea is like a giant mineral bath. It is full of magnesium, sodium, and trace minerals (including iodine). Our bodies absorb these minerals through our skin. As most who are reading this know, fluoroquinolones deplete the body of magnesium, iron and other minerals. Soaking in ocean water can help to replace those minerals. Additionally, fluoroquinolones damage the thyroid, and the iodine in the sea may help to repair the thyroid.

I am guessing that most of the benefits I feel while at and in the ocean have to do with the absorption of minerals from the sea into my body through my skin, but there are other benefits to being at the beach too. The times that I’ve gone to the beach post-flox have all been times when I’ve been on vacation, and I have been relaxed while I’ve been there. De-stressing is good for everyone, especially floxies whose GABA neurotransmitters are downgraded, causing them to have difficulty relaxing (though the difficulty relaxing tends to be paired with fatigue – a horrible combination, for sure). I also got tons of vitamin D3 from the sun while at the beach, and vitamin D3, as well as other beneficial things from the sun, are anti-inflammatory and good for the body.

This is a bit woo-woo, but I’ve always felt like being in the water was good for me energetically. It feels as if my nervous system is both energized and relaxed when I’m in the water. In my recent interview with Dave Asprey on Bulletproof Radio we chatted about this. The healing effects of submersion in water for people dealing with multi-symptom, mysterious illnesses, are documented–though I’m not sure of the mechanism through which water heals.

Post-flox, I’ve always felt better in the water. Swimming, even in chlorinated pools, has been healing for me. But I never feel as good in a pool as I do in the ocean. The pool is healing, but the ocean is magical for me. It helps–immensely.

I was never a beach person before I got floxed. I was born and raised in Colorado and I am a mountain girl through and through. I never understood the appeal of beaches–they’re sandy, the sea-water makes my skin sticky, and I both overheat and get sunburned easily. After I got floxed though, I started to appreciate the water because it was healing and energizing for me. About 10 months post-flox I went on vacation to Hawaii and felt the healing power of the sea. Being in the ocean felt AMAZING! Ever since then, I have gotten in the ocean whenever I have the opportunity, and each time it has been invigorating and healing. I guess that I’m a beach/ocean person now–there are worse changes in the world. :p

I hope that fellow floxie friends find the ocean to be as invigorating and healing as I do. The sea is one of my favorite kinds of medicine.


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25 thoughts on “The Healing Power of the Sea

  1. jwinn December 2, 2015 at 8:49 am Reply

    I have always spent a lot of time at the beach during the summer…I enjoyed the sunlight on my face and the smell of the salt air. The past 2 years, I have not been able to make the drive, nor have I had the motivation, to go to the beach. I am praying for better days this summer…

    • Lisa Bloomquist December 2, 2015 at 8:57 am Reply

      I hope that you will have better days this summer too! I hope that you are able to get to the beach and that it starts a cycle of healing for you. Actually, I hope that a cycle of healing begins sooner than that for you. Hang in there – the summer, and its healing sun and warmth, will be here soon.

      • jwinn December 2, 2015 at 11:26 am Reply

        Thanks, Lisa. Me too!

  2. Jason December 2, 2015 at 9:25 am Reply

    “though I’m not sure of the mechanism through which water heals.”

    Besides the very important Minerals you mentioned, the water has a great anti-inflammatory effect on the body, which is why a pool can still help, but unfortunately in a pool there are MANY chemicals the body will absorb some in high quantities.

    I can NOT recommend swimming in Ocean enough either, or even a Lake, however for those that don’t have easy access, if they are suffering with Joint issues, and tendon issues, and ANY kind of inflammatory issues of which they are MANY, and MANY Floxies are all suffering from many of these, then cold water treatments just in the shower can help a LOT here.

    Of course if someone’s diet includes many acidic and inflammatory things, then these efforts will be largely undermined, and as well if there GUT health has not been addressed which in many cases it has NOT been in a Floxie comprehensively, then once again these efforts can come to naught.

    Lisa how is the Methylation article coming along? Lisa did you notice the 50 or so comments full of a ton of important Anxiety information I added to the Anxiety article? (I mention this because I think it was overlooked yesterday)

    • Lisa Bloomquist December 2, 2015 at 6:56 pm Reply

      Thanks, as always, for your input! The methylation information is a bit boggling. I’ll get to it – though I’m not sure exactly when. :/

  3. Linda December 2, 2015 at 10:18 am Reply

    yes, Lisa the beach is great! (Love the pic btw). I have been trying to walk on the beach 2-3 times a week. Luckily it is just a 15 minute drive for me. I try to walk in the water for the very reasons you mentioned (but getting c-c-c-c-old now) but also for “earthing.” This is from the NIH site: However, emerging scientific research has revealed a surprisingly positive and overlooked environmental factor on health: direct physical contact with the vast supply of electrons on the surface of the Earth. Modern lifestyle separates humans from such contact. The research suggests that this disconnect may be a major contributor to physiological dysfunction and unwellness. Reconnection with the Earth’s electrons has been found to promote intriguing physiological changes and subjective reports of well-being. Earthing (or grounding) refers to the discovery of benefits—including better sleep and reduced pain—from walking barefoot outside or sitting, working, or sleeping indoors connected to conductive systems that transfer the Earth’s electrons from the ground into the body. This paper reviews the earthing research and the potential of earthing as a simple and easily accessed global modality of significant clinical importance.

    • Jason December 2, 2015 at 11:01 am Reply

      Grounding is another great addition to someone’s “Healing Tool Box”, that, and also using small amounts of low electrical currents too.

      Hulda Clark (famous in the Alternative Medicine World, interesting story too) was a HUGE believer in this. If you google “Hulda Clark The Cure for all Diseases” the first result is a link to this very interesting book I read many years ago, a lot of good stuff in there, 600+ pages (and free as a pdf from the link that comes up)

    • Lisa Bloomquist December 2, 2015 at 6:57 pm Reply

      Earthing/grounding is another aspect of being on the beach that is healing. I didn’t even think of that. 🙂

  4. Max Pierson December 2, 2015 at 3:22 pm Reply

    The ocean is wonderful: has lots of magnesium. A perfect substitute is magnesium oil rubbed into the skin. The skin works as a reservoir for magnesium, whenever I feel edgy I shower and apply. The sunshine brings vitamin D in huge doses. One can supplement that but it’s hard on the liver. The exercise of swimming brings.. well, some exercise. The earth is our best source of electrons, getting in the ocean water brings electrons to your body like nothing else will but sleeping and working on grounded mats works fine too… If you have lots of electrons you have less need for antioxidants, if any at all. The science doesn’t seem to be settled on earthing but my experience is it cures winter depression so seemingly it can’t be bad. Here’s to getting over all the damage done by modern medicine! I’m 71 yo and don’t want any of it, in fact I’m more into making them stay away than anything else 🙂 I’ve been losing my balance continually for a year and a half after just two days of taking Cipro. I quit taking it when I seemed to be allergic to it, glad of that for sure.

    • Lisa Bloomquist December 2, 2015 at 6:59 pm Reply

      Here’s to getting over all the damage done by modern medicine, for sure! Cheers! I hope that your balance improves!

  5. Ruth Young December 2, 2015 at 4:04 pm Reply

    I feel the same way about Lake Michigan! Plus, immersion in really cold water can help with vagal nerve tone, or so I’ve read. That could be why I feel so great after swimming in that big cold lake. Plus, the whole cryotherapy thing. Too bad it’s winter now. Water temps in the 40’s. But in summer anything around sixty degrees is good enough for me. And I like it when there are big waves. I love the feeling of swimming in them, though it is dangerous. Scary how many parents just sit on the beach while their kids are out there in some pretty rough, dangerous water. The kid in me says the danger is what makes it fun.

    • Lisa Bloomquist December 2, 2015 at 7:00 pm Reply

      Cold thermogenesis is also really interesting, and certainly good for vagal nerve tone. So, there are benefits to the water all times of the year. 🙂

  6. Robert Nemmer December 2, 2015 at 7:15 pm Reply

    Glad to hear that you had a good time. I lived in Sarasota- Bradenton Florida for 10 years before coming to Utah. Worst mistake I ever made in my life. After my first back surgery 1n about 1983, My Doctors recommendation was to go and get in the water as much as possible. I do believe it helped me very much and I sure miss that area. I dont think I could stay for the summers though.

    • Lisa Bloomquist December 3, 2015 at 8:13 am Reply

      Madiera Beach was gorgeous in November, but I don’t think I could tolerate the summers either. I hope that you find a location to live in that you enjoy!


  7. kris t December 3, 2015 at 8:26 am Reply

    Lisa, you may head for the ocean but I am heading to Arizona! I found out i have severe arthritis in my back, probably due to my injury which was caused with weakening muscles in my back, due to the Cipro. The brain fog and mental screwiness went away in about five months. There were times when I thought I was going insane and having major surgery did not help either. Still have the double vision but eye specialist thinks it will go away but could take months. I just wonder why this drug helps some, but destroys others. Is it because they have stronger magnesium elements in their bodies? Kris T

  8. Daniel L December 4, 2015 at 6:38 am Reply

    I totally agree.

    I surf in lake Ontario.

    Ironically surfable waves mostly form in winter, so that means donning a wetsuit and going out in water that is near the freezing point. Sometimes there is even ice in the water.

    Now that’s cold water immersion.

    Occasionally, we will get a swell in the summer. There was a a swell last July where I was alone at the beach for 2-3 hours. I surfed in the sunshine, catching wave after wave till my arms wouldn’t work anymore.

    That was before Cipro, but this July there was a swell again and I still managed to catch a bunch of waves.

    I love that when I spend a day on the water, when I go to bed, I can still feel myself floating. Also after so many hours of staring at incoming waves, looking for the perfect wave, when I close my eyes, I can still see waves.

    But that’s the lake, the ocean is even more amazing.

    Surfing in the ocean is even more amazing. The waves have much more power and the salt water is amazing.

    I don’t even rinse off after being in the ocean, I just leave the salt on my skin.

    I remember this one time surfing in Martinique. The wind was blowing a mist off the tops of the waves, and each time that happened, it would for a mini rainbow.

    • Linda December 4, 2015 at 8:51 am Reply

      Sounds nice. I watch the surfers here in CA. If I ever get well enough, I’m taking surfing lessons!

      • jwinn December 4, 2015 at 9:06 am Reply

        I’m with you, Linda! 🙂 Hopefully, we will both be learning how to surf!!!

      • Daniel L December 4, 2015 at 12:49 pm Reply

        If you guys lived near me I’d lend you a board and give you lessons myself. 🙂

        I believe the ocean is the Alpha and Omega of all life on earth: it all came from the ocean, and it all returns to the ocean.

        We all flow eventually back to the see, so in a way you’re surfing already.

        (And wow, I wrote that post…hastily. So many repeated words. Mrs Welanius, my high school English teacher, would not approve.)

  9. memcion December 5, 2015 at 5:22 pm Reply

    You are so right. I went to Treasure beach Florida and I was almost my old self again.
    The healing power of the ocean is very real.
    I can’t wait to go back.

  10. Mike February 27, 2017 at 3:00 pm Reply

    There have been no entries on this subject in a long time but I just wanted to put an exclamation point on this correlation.

    I have been floxed for years now and NOTHING has really helped. I’ve tried so many supplements etc… I have progressively gotten worse over the years. Two weeks ago I went to Tulum and spent a lot of time in the ocean and on the beach soaking up sun. It was the closest I have felt to normal in years. It has been the ONLY thing that I can honestly say was effective for healing!!!!

    It even carried over through a week after I got back. My brain fog was so much better. My joints still hurt but not as much. I feel like my old self. My brain is working.

    I wonder sometimes Lisa if this is not just an ocean thing but an altitude / oxygen issue as we both live in Colorado at elevation.

    Either way it makes me want to move…

    • L February 27, 2017 at 3:43 pm Reply

      Some of I imagine has to do with magnesium absorption; some with “earthing” from walking on the sand, in the water; some with lowered stress levels. Good all around!!

  11. Ruth Young February 28, 2017 at 3:24 am Reply

    Most floxies do feel better in water. Swimming seems to help a lot of people. With the added minerals and electrolytes and the ocean and making some Vitamin D from the sun I could see how it would be very beneficial.

    I spent a lot of time in Lake Michigan during this past late summer and fall and I found it to be very healing as well. The waters of the Great Lakes are high in magnesium. I found out the beach I go to in Racine, Wisconsin has tested so clean in water quality tests that it often tests “clean enough to drink.” So swimming there was much better than any pool and better than most lakes.

    I think there is something psychologically healing about it as well– a complete release from stress. Lake Michigan can get some pretty good sized waves rolling in, similar to the ocean, and swimming in those waves makes you focus all your attention on what you are doing. There is suddenly no room for stress or even a thought about anything else, except the next wave rolling in. Plus, Lake Michigan is often quite frigid and I have heard that immersion in cold water helps activate the parasympathetic nervous system. I believe that to be true as I always felt calm and relaxed after I left the beach after work.

    I wish it were still an option for me. My work situation is intolerably stressful and would be even if I were not floxed. I go to the gym after work now to deal with stress. It helps and I am glad to be feeling physically well enough to go, although I am not quite as fit as I was before I got floxed. My stamina is decreased still. But I miss the way the beach was a wonderful escape.

    Nothing else I try: exercise, walking in nature, swimming in a pool, meditating, listening to music– nothing is as effective to combat stress as going to the beach was for me in fall. Maybe cross country skiiing would have provided a release but we never got any snow, except once in December and I was sick at that time so I did not get to enjoy it.

    I am deeply becoming deeply depressed and I don’t think it is a flox thing so much as a job issue. I thought all the coping skills I gained from getting floxed could get me through anything, but my job is sucking the life out of me. If I had access to a beach year round I would probably be coping better. I do think there is huge healing power there for floxies, especially larger bodies of water where the waves crash against the shore. Even just sitting on the beach the sound of the waves is therapeutic and calming. Just thinking about it is making me feel a little better, actually.

    • L February 28, 2017 at 10:57 am Reply

      Sounds like it’s time for a new job Ruth! I am originally from the midwest, and I we did get some waves on Lake Michigan. In fact, I can recall a few friends actually surfing on it! 🙂 You’re lucky the water in Racine is so good. That is a rarety these days. Erin Brokovich has been following water quality across the states and it is pretty dismal.

  12. Tisha February 23, 2019 at 11:02 am Reply

    I am fighting Lyme disease (for 7 years now….infected 15 years ago), and the only place I feel good is at the beach. It’s the only place a get a glimpse of being well. Not only for the reasons you mentioned, but the water also detoxes (most of the Lyme battle is overload of toxins from bacteria). The sand pulls toxins from the body…because if you detox, but can’t drain fast enough like me, detox alone will make you horribly sick. So, the sand balances it. The movement of the water also creates negative ions in the air, and those are also very healing. It is said that walking in wet sand will strengthen the adrenal glands, too.
    Waterfalls, rivers, and even the woods create negative ions, which help me, but none as good and in as good of a combination as the beach. We missed our usual Feb trip this year, and I haven’t been able to go since the end of July (9 1/2 hour car trip), and my body and mind feel it.

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