When we think of getting a massage, we think about relieving tension in our shoulders or helping workout the stress we are carrying around. What we do not realize is there are so many more benefits that come from getting a massage. A massage stimulates your nervous system, wakes up your muscles, organs, and glands, moves blood and lymph fluid, and gets multitudes of cells to produce and release chemicals and hormones. Below are three benefits of massage that might surprise you.
A full-body massage can be beneficial for our hearts. The vasodilation produced by massage increases our venous return which, in turn, increases blood flow and delivery of oxygen to all of our organs. Our entire cardiovascular system relaxes, and circulation throughout your body improves.
Stress takes a toll on the digestive system, and a full-body massage can have a very healthy effect on how our body processes food and nutrients. The parasympathetic nervous system regulates our digestion, producing needed chemicals, (e.g., saliva, gastric juice, and insulin), and stimulates peristalsis, which moves food through our intestines.
The lymphatic system is crucial to balance the fluid and the function of our immune system. Lymphatic vessels parallel blood vessels throughout our body and large groups of lymph nodes are found in the neck, armpits, and groin. As the massage therapist works on flushing blood through muscle and tissue, they are also draining the lymphatic system, where the lymph nodes filter out dead cells, waste products, and possible pathogens.
If the idea of relieving those achy muscles is not enough motivation to schedule your next massage appointment, then we hope the above benefits will help you see the importance of a regular massage.