You may seek out massage to sooth your aches and pains but the effect that a massage therapy treatment can have on the body is much more involved. That chilled out feeling you experience coming out of a treatment room is no coincidence. There are measurable biological changes that occur during and after a massage that not only reduce stress but help to beef up your immune system.
A new study tested 53 adults through two trial groups- one which received deep Swedish massage, and one which received a light touch treatment. Both showed significant changes to hormone levels and circulating immune cells, so if your body isn’t up for it there is no need to have a more intense, deep treatment to reap the stress reducing benefits!
Participants who had a deep Swedish treatment showed reduced cortisol (stress hormone) levels, and even further reduced levels of arginine vasopressin which is responsible for triggering cortisol production. The second group, after light touch treatment, also showed a marked increase in oxytocin, the calm and content hormone. Both groups also showed increased numbers of lymphocytes circulating in the blood for a boosted immune defense, as well as, reduced interleukin- another indicator of a stronger immune system.
To read more about this study from the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine here: A Preliminary Study of the Effects of a Single Session of Swedish Massage on Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal and Immune Function in Normal Individuals.
Broadway Wellness is a community focused, multi-disciplinary wellness clinic. Located in the heart of Vancouver, our clinic offers services by highly skilled practitioners in the fields of Registered Massage Therapy, Naturopathic Medicine, and Chiropractic Care through Network Spinal Analysis (NSA).
Vancouver Massage Therapy Article of the Week