New research reveals how different colors can affect well-being – Color Healing
The ancient healing arts practiced in the temples of Egypt, Greece, India, and China incorporated the use of color healing into certain beauty and wellness rituals.The ancient healing arts practiced in the temples of Egypt, Greece, India, and China incorporated the use of #colorhealing into certain beauty and wellness rituals. Click To Tweet
Today, energy healers recognize an aura, or energetic field, that surrounds each of us. They postulate that these energy fields are a conscious intelligence capable of being disrupted, causing illness, disease and mood disorders. These healers believe that controlled exposure to different colors and their frequencies may be able to correct inconsistencies or discrepancies in a person’s aura and energy patterns, helping to restore balance and equilibrium.
Light, whether white or colored, emits specific frequencies that can be measured. Each color of the spectrum produces a different wavelength, which our brains translate into certain colors. What we perceive as white light is actually all the colors in the spectrum blended together. When it comes to the question of how these frequencies actually affect us, one of the most compelling arguments is a disorder known as SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). An episodic type of depression directly related to levels of melatonin produced in the brain’s pineal gland, SAD typically takes its hold during the light-scanty months of the winter, when days are shortest.
Here’s what happens: Light is absorbed by the body through both the eyes and skin, affecting each of the body’s physiological systems and reaching the pineal gland by way of a complex network of nerves. The pineal gland responds to these light levels, manufacturing melatonin in response to the approach of darkness. During the long, dark days of winter, more melatonin is produced on a regular basis, triggering changes in mood. The most successful treatment for this disorder involves the use of broad spectrum light therapy, which suppresses melatonin production and alleviates symptoms. SAD sufferers are exposed to broad spectrum light (which appears white but actually contains red, yellow, and blue shades) for prolonged, but controlled, periods of time.
Interestingly, metaphysical healers commonly associate specific colors with each of the seven major chakras. These colors are generally believed to possess qualities that coincide with those represented and governed by each of the body’s chakras. For instance, red is linked with the root chakra, associated with strength, courage, and vitality. Blue, commonly associated with serenity and calm, is said to be aligned with the throat chakra. White is viewed as purifying, while black may have grounding qualities.
Lately, a new range of therapies have become available that tap into the ways in which light and color can affect our moods and help to rebalance both energy and emotion, thus enhancing our health and well-being. Soothing and non-invasive, light and color therapies are being introduced as an element in facials and other spa treatments. Light work may be used as the primary form of treatment or to augment another therapy. It’s been determined that certain light frequencies also stimulate the production of collagen, leading to speculation that they could be useful as part of an anti-aging therapy. New technologies include the Lumiderm Photorejuvenation system of light therapy facials, which utilizes red, infrared, and other light wavelengths to heal skin, with the intention of reducing the appearance of age spots, blemishes, coarseness, redness, and enlarged pores.
The healing use of color and light can be manifested in a variety of ways, ranging from exposure to light from colored lamps, color baths, and cloth of certain colors worn on reflex points around the body to the use of color cards and guided visualizations where a healing color enters the body via the breath. LumaLight 2000, with multiple color lenses, is a tool resembling a flashlight being used to enhance the effect of Reiki, aromatherapy sessions, and reflexology. BainUltra manufactures a line of chromatherapy color baths that can be installed in the home. Color therapy may also take the form of Colorpuncture, a system founded by German therapist and naturopath Peter Mandel, which focuses concentrated beams of colored light at precise acupuncture meridian points. Phytobiodermie’s Chromopuncteur treatments focus beams of intense color on chakra points, with the purpose of stimulating the body’s own innate healing powers.
At Canyon Ranch in the Berkshires, guests can slip into colorful baths made to address personal energy imbalances. Therapists at Canyon Ranch take this therapy even further by adding color clay wraps and snapping a chakra photograph with a special device called the Aura Camera 600. The Aura Camera measures and photographs energy fields, producing a full-color image that reveals an individual’s aura and areas of imbalance.
Can’t make it to a spa to give one of the new color and light therapies an official try? You can begin at home, using paint, fabrics to cover pillows and furniture, and by choosing the color clothing you wear to complement or influence your mood. If you’re troubled by insomnia, try painting your bedroom a soothing shade of blue or green. Go with your instincts, and choose a shade that pleases you. If you’re feeling fatigued,and have a busy day ahead, slip on an orange, red, or yellow sweater. You can also purchase colored lightbulbs for lamps and color-coded bath salts to create your own at-home spa experience. Throw a color party and invite your friends. But be prepared – chances are, they’ll be green with envy.
Rainbow of RemediesHere’s a list of the general properties usually associated with the colors of the spectrum as well as the chakras they align with:
Red – A stimulating color, red represents strength and vigor. Usually viewed as having masculine energy. Base (root) chakra.
Orange – The color orange is often associated with pleasure, creativity, hope, and joyfulness, and has a feminine energy. Sacral (spleen) chakra.
Yellow – Like red, yellow is a cheerful, stimulating color, and represents mental activity and reasoning. Solar Plexis chakra.
Green – Earth harmony and overall balance, including balance between body, soul, and mind. Heart chakra.
Blue – Calmness, serenity, and inspiration; aids in communication. Throat chakra.
Teal blue/Indigo – This color is associated with healing and strengthening immunity as well as meditation, intuition, and connecting us to all things. Third eye chakra.
Violet – Representing insight, radiance, and inspiration, the color violet is also associated with dignity, royalty, and self-esteem. Crown chakra.
at a spa near you
A growing number of spas are offering color and light-based therapies and treatments, either alone or to complement other treatments. Here are a few to get you started:
Aqua Terra Spa, Laguna Beach, CA. The Artistic Ritual treatment includes color therapy mud wraps and color bathing. (949) 376-2772, www.aquaterraspa.com
Las Ventanas Resort, Los Cabos, Mexico. Offers Wholistic Crystal Light Healing Massage. (52) 624-144-0300, www.lasventanas.com
The Meadows Massage & Day Spa, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Color therapy treatments. (403) 283-6994, www.meadowsmassagedayspa.com
Mountain View Grand Resort & Spa, Whitefield, NH. Color therapy massages with views of the White Mountains. (800) 438-3017, www.mountainviewsparesort.com
The Post Ranch Inn, Big Sur, CA. Get a customized color reading in a yurt. (831) 667-2887, www.postranchinn.com
Ritz-Carlton Spa, New Orleans, LA. Couples Color Therapy Bath with water infused with essential oils while colorful lights shine alongside the tub. (504) 670-2929, www.ritzcarlton.com
Ritz Carlton Huntington Hotel & Spa, Pasadena, CA. Five Color Clay Mask Facial with colored essential oils and color clays. (626) 568-3900, www.ritzcarlton.com
Somata Spa, Riverview, MI. Color therapy consultations, massages, and baths. (734) 759-1772, www.somataspa.com
Steamboat Villa Hot Springs Spa, Reno, NV. Color therapy tubs. (775) 853-6600, www.steamboatsprings.org
Two Bunch Palms Natural Hot Springs & Spa, Desert Hot Springs, CA. Color-based chakra balancing treatments are given in the Color Therapy Gazebo. (800) 472-4334, www.twobunchpalms.com
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