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Massage is Body/Mind/Spirit Nutrition

Timely topics on nutrition have dominated my articles lately, but I got to thinking about my massage practice and the importance of receiving massage on a regular basis for one’s health.  Massage is actually nutrition for the body, mind, and spirit.  Massage is nourishing for the body by providing improvement to circulation, relieving congestion in tissues, enhancing immune function by speeding up the release and elimination of metabolic wastes and toxins, improving digestive function, and restoring muscle actions and tone increasing range of motion.

Massage provides nourishment for the mind, our brains, by improving circulation especially oxygen transport so vital for brain functions.  As well, circulating nutrients reach the brain faster when toxins are cleared away by the immune system.  Waste products and toxins can become stuck in our tissues for many reasons such as poor diet, lack of exercise, inadequate sleep and rest times, and exposures to damaging environmental chemicals found in our food sources, air we breathe, and non-pure or unfiltered water.  To keep our minds sharp and to ward off those dreaded “lapses” in our recalling where we left our keys or people’s names, we need to provide ourselves with a healthy diet rich in nutrients and correct fats.  Supporting these essentials along with receiving massage sessions often keeps our thinking sharp and our brains functioning optimally for us.

When it comes to massage supporting spirit, we all are aware of ourselves at a deeper level of consciousness.  We experience joy and sadness, gain and loss, ease and struggle, happiness or worry throughout our lives.  We also recognize the importance of support from family, friends, and even our beloved pets as we experience those ups and downs.  On the physical level, massage addresses our largest organ, our skin.  A great massage leaves our skin nourished with healthy oil, softened, stroked, and nurtured.  Many people often do not even get hugged enough.  Massage provides that loving touch so important for human survival.  Taking care of ourselves by making wise choices in our activities and habits provides us with a sense of well-being and personal accomplishment. Receiving massage often, even if it is a 30 minute back rub or having our hands and feet massaged regularly, releases the stresses that have accumulated and helps us feel loved and supported.  When we are good to ourselves, we reach out more often to others, expand our awareness and creativity, and can experience more emotional peace.  This in turn releases those “feel good” hormones, serotonin and dopamine, two important neurotransmitters supporting brain function.

Treat yourself and your loved ones this holiday season with gift certificates for massage.  Everyone will be happy.

Krystle Shapiro, LMT, MSHN owns Touchstone Massage Therapy and Nutrition Plus!  She can be reached at (208) 290-6760.

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