Supporting Your Immune System

Massage Therapy and Immunity

I know we all strive to be healthy in one way or another, whether it’s eating properly, maintaining an active lifestyle, getting adequate sleep and water intake, or going for your massage regularly… Wait a minute, how can Massage Therapy assist in your overall health!? We tend to typically think of visiting our Massage Therapist when we’re experiencing pain, or when we’re feeling particularly stressed, but receiving regular massage treatments can actually assist in maintaining a balanced and healthy immunity.

The lymphatic system contains lymph, a milky fluid contained within the tissues comprised of waste products and white blood cells. White blood cells are responsible for fighting infection. Massage Therapy helps to encourage circulation and drainage of the lymphatics, thereby helping it to work to remove waste and toxins from the body more efficiently. This is particularly beneficial if you are trying to fight an infection or illness. Blood then carries oxygen and nutrients back to the cells, providing energy and allowing for the repair and regeneration of cells. The lymphatic and circulatory systems work simultaneously to remove waste from the body. Thus, by improving circulation, Massage Therapy helps the body work more efficiently. Furthermore, massage also helps increase the production of Natural Killer Cells, which play a major role in the rejection of tumor cells, while also protecting against a wide variety of infectious microbes.

Cortisol is commonly referred to as the “stress hormone,” as it is involved in the response to stress and anxiety. Cortisol can increase blood pressure and blood sugar, which in turn destroys Natural Killer Cells and reduces immune responses. Massage Therapy decreases cortisol levels, boosting your immune system. Massage Therapy has been shown to even boost immunity in those with compromised immune systems, such as cancer patients or HIV patients.

As you can see, regular Massage Therapy treatments can not only help with pain or stress relief, but it can also help you achieve a balanced and healthy immune by promoting circulation and reducing cortisol levels. So the next time you want to give your immunity a little boost, think not what your body can do for you, but rather what Massage Therapy can do for your body!  To book a Massage Therapy appointment with Sarah Nottingham, RMT.

Sarah Nottingham, Registered Massage Therapist, Bloor West Village

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