For anyone looking to fend off colds and the dreaded flu as the Winter months arrive should seek out a massage therapist for prevention strategies. Regular massages have been shown to help make the immune system stronger, according to studies.
Regular therapeutic massage sessions provide significant benefits beyond the obvious and immediate relaxation we enjoy. It is a well-known fact that anyone who experience high levels of stress tends to get sick more than others. Along with this stress there is often a lack of sleep and poor nutrition, and our immune system’s ability to naturally protect itself against bacteria and infection is greatly reduced. So the question is: What are the benefits of massage on immune system?
Massage therapy increases the activity level of the body’s white blood cells that work to combat viruses. According to research from Cedars-Sinai, participants in a Swedish massage group experienced significant changes in lymphocytes, which play a large role in defending the body from disease. A lymphocyte is one of the three subtypes of white blood cells in the immune system.
White blood cells are an important part of our immune weaponry; they fight infection and repair our tissues and organs. “White blood cells are stored in specific glands and these are connected to the skin through nerves so massage is stimulating these nerves allowing the glands to release white blood cells in circulation”. Fulvio D’Acquisto, Roehampton University
According to the BBC programme Trust Me I’m a Doctor, the study found that massage increased the white cell count by almost 70%!
Massage therapy may be a great addition to your exercise program. Just like regular exercise can keep your muscles strong, regular massage can help keep your immune system performing at its peak.
Remember; only receive massage therapy when you’re healthy and always seek medical advice when unwell. Massage is not an alternative to medical assistance; this article is about helping the body strengthen naturally before it becomes sick.
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