Did you know that one of the best rejuvenation therapies is an excellent relaxing massage, as it also helps boost bodyâ€™s immune system? Our ancient medicine system, Ayurveda, has always believed in magical healing properties of herbs and oils, and the recent research has only confirmed it by saying that it actually boosts your immune system.
Recent research in Cedars-Sinaiâ€™s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, have found that people who actually go in for the massage, experience considerable changes in their immune system and endocrine response.
This indicates that massage, apart from just lending a feel-good feeling, is also good for your overall well-being. People who got the massage experienced measurable changes in their lymphocyte numbers, and percentages of white blood cells, which play a large role in defending body from disease.
It also caused significant reduction in Arginine Vasopressin (AVP), a hormone, thought to be a cause for aggressive behaviour, and also indicated a decrease in levels of stress hormone, cortisol.
Although preliminary tests have been very encouraging, researchers say that a single massage by itself can bring about considerable benefit.
Dr. Meghna Dixit, practising Ayurvedic expert, explains that the massage helps in lymphatic drainage. It leads the toxins and waste products from the blood and serum from lymph nodes, to the kidney and throws it out of the body, thereby purifying the blood and body on the whole.
Further, it increases basic metabolism rate, and activates the cells to perform at their best, boosting immunity.
Dr. Ajiaz Ashai specializing in sports physiotherapy says that a massage has two-fold benefit. It relieves mental and physical stress.
Apart from relieving muscular tension, a nice rub facilitates the release of lactic acid accumulation. However, it is important to differentiate between stiffness from lactic acid accumulation and spasmodic condition, as rest is a must in the later condition.
When it is not possible to give a complete body massage, at least massage of feet, leg and back is required. In fact, â€œChandan bala lakshadi thelâ€ (Chandan bala lakshadi oil) can do wonders for cough, asthma and cold attacks, and boost oneâ€™s immunity, while sesame oil is also good enough, says Dr. Dixit.
To be able to enjoy a massage and obtain its maximum benefits, the choice of oil is also important. While spas use a blend of aromatic oils, for those planning for a soothing home treatment, some options to consider are sweet almond oil, apricot kernel oil, jojoba oil, fractionated coconut oil and sunflower oil. The sweet almond oil is a popular massage oil among massage therapists.