THE ORIGINS OF DETOXIFICATION OF THE HUMAN ORGANISM IN VICHY, France, DATE BACK TO ANTIQUITY
IN THE BEGINNING, THE HOT THERMAL SPRINGS
Sweating is a basic process of purification and detoxification for the organism and has been used in thermal baths for a very long time. Sweating occurs because of the hot thermal springs which supply the baths with hot water. It was during Antiquity that the sudatorium was created: a room, especially in ancient Roman times, used for hot-air or steam baths. In these small rooms the temperature was very hot, and people would go there to sweat. The sudatorium is in many ways the ancestor of the present day Turkish bath with its steam room. It allowed people to detoxify their body and regain their energy. In Vichy, hot water from 9 thermal springs is used.
IN THE 17TH CENTURY THE THERMAL BATHS AT VICHY STARTED TO PRACTICE SUDATION
The Middle Ages, respecting the tradition to detoxify their body, is a key period in the design of steam rooms. From the 18th century, steam rooms logically became an integral part of the therapeutic arsenal used in thermal medicine at Vichy. Jacques-François Chomel, who also gave his name to one of the hot springs at Vichy at 43°C, was the first Medical Doctor to develop a teaching and training process for the practice of sudation. Although he confirmed that the roots of the tradition lay in Antiquity, he also turned to ethnography and described in detail the "sweat lodges" of the North American Indians.
Doctor Jean-François Chomel introduced thermal steam rooms in Vichy which were a mix of antique tradition and savage exoticism. The thermal centres at Vichy started to use the hydrotherapy techniques which were developing and progressing during the 19th century. For example, in 1893, the Établissement Thermal de Vichy thermal centre used equipment developed by Mr. C.A. Berthe. The working principles of the old steam rooms used in Vichy during the 18th century were updated and reused in his "box vapour baths". But with further technical developments this type of equipment became more elaborate and more technical.
VICHY BECOMES PART OF A MULTI-CENTURY TRADITION
Since the '70s thermalism in Vichy (France) has focused more and more on those people with "modern hyperactive lifestyles", inviting them to wind down, relax and detoxify their bodies through stimulation and revitalisation. The existing material being used was abandoned, but the underlying principle maintained, with the creation of the sauna in 1965, which ever since, has never stopped having its qualities praised! "By its detoxifying action, the sauna repairs the temporary physiological damage caused to the organism through fatigue". Today, saunas and Turkish baths are considered as traditional care treatments.
Vichy's experience in terms of detoxification belongs to these various thermal practices. The different thermal centres used them as a complement to the classic treatments used by Vichy's historic thermalism.
2010, THE LAUNCH OF THE DETOX CURE TREATMENT
The Scientific Committee of the VICHY CÉLESTINS SPA HÔTEL were concerned by the alarming observation of the high number of pollutants which affect our daily lives:
- heavy metals such as mercury, lead, aluminium, and there are many others, are present in the atmosphere and everyday consumer products;
- stress is recognised as an important generator of toxins;
- diet rapidly becomes unbalanced due to the excessive consumption of animal proteins, added to which are sugars and food preservatives;
- tobacco and alcohol also contribute to accentuate the disequilibrium of the human organism.
The Detox cure treatment, launched in 2010 in Vichy (France), responds to the expectations and requirements of our patrons who want to regain their normal energy levels after a period of major physical and mental fatigue. It is often the body that sounds the alarm: difficulty waking up in the morning; digestion taking a long time and often accompanied by stomach acidity; reduced creativity and physiological performance.
Our regular clients, interested in preventive health care, take their cure in the spring. The Detox cure health care programmes of our destinations VICHY CÉLESTINS SPA HOTEL 5* et VICHY THERMALIA SPA HOTEL 4* are based on the 5 keys to global health, using the Vichy Method.
Discover them at our destinations!
Article co-authored by Mr Pascal Chambriard, Historian of the Compagnie de Vichy.