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The Healing Sands of Porto Santo

Updated: Jul 1, 2023

Scientists from the University of Oslo in Norway and the University of Aveiro, just south of Porto in mainland Portugal found that the ‘carbonate biogenic sands’ that cover Porto Santo’s 9km of uninterrupted golden beach are high in calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, sulphur and strontium, all extremely helpful in the relief of rheumatism and other arthritic complaints - along with gout, osteoporosis and fibromyalgia!

“Cristiano Ronaldo swears by it…”

There are only two beaches in the world that have such biologically helpful properties, Porto Santo and Ibusuki Beach in Southern Japan.

The prescribed method on Porto Santo, as you can witness if you take a stroll along the shore on a nice, warm day, is to be buried up to your neck in healthenhancing silica and soak up its benefits for at least an hour or two! Your skin needs to get hot enough to

perspire to get the full effect. Repeat on a daily basis for at least 5 or 6 days and you’ll be as ‘good as new’! Or so they say!

If you prefer something more sophisticated and are happy to pay for it, hotels such as the Hotel Porto Santo offer a comprehensive spa experience including their ‘Hot Sand Therapy’.

Cristiano Ronaldo swears by it. Experiencing some thigh muscle issues in 2018, the Madeira-born soccer superstar, accompanied by his mother, Dolores, headed to Porto

Santo for a weekend to take ‘the treatment’. He hasn’t looked back since. In fact, it was rumoured he took some Porto Santo sand away with him - which you’re strictly not supposed to. But then, who on these islands is going to argue with CR7.

Whether it’s true or not, I’m always delighted to stroll the lengths of Porto Santo’s beach. There’s something magical about this stretch. Even in the depths of winter - January and February - not that Madeira’s winter has much depth, you can really enjoy the air and visual delight of this wonderful beach.


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