Massage Wants to Be Seen as Medicine

As more and more people turn to massage for all kinds of ailments, the medical research community is taking notice and making it a priority to discover the benefits that a massage can offer.  Over the past few years, there has been an increase in the number of scientific studies being performed to discover why and how massage works to heal a variety of maladies. 

Finally, new research has revealed what happens in the body after a massage.  For anyone who has experienced a massage knows the relaxed feeling you have and all of your muscle tension is relieved.  One forty-five minute massage led to a reduction in the stress inducing hormone cortisol.  When our levels of cortisol are reduced, we feel a sense of calm wash over us.  Also, there was a decrease in cytokine proteins which are related to inflammation in the body and allergic reactions.  In addition, there was an increase in white blood cells which help to fight infection. 

This surge in scientific research is being led by The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine which is part of the National Institute of Health.  They have promised to spend $2.7 million on research in the coming years.  The non-profit Massage Therapy Foundation will be hosting it’s third conference this summer to further explore the benefits that massage has to offer.

With more and more people using massage regularly it could mean greater insurance coverage making the cost of a massage more affordable.  No longer will massage be seen as a luxury that only wealthy people of leisure can afford, but will now gain the reputation as an effective treatment for a wide spectrum of conditions.