Why Getting a Massage Is More Important in December


2016-12-23 09:32

If you frequently get massages, getting one or two during the holidays can prove to be more significant for your health.

The news is raising awareness about the fact that heart attacks spike around December. Stress over traveling and last minute shopping, overeating, and partying too hard are a very bad cocktail for a cardiovascular system that's already being weakened by plaque buildup and long-term cardiac tissue damage.

If you have a heart condition, it's imperative you not stress yourself, party too hard, or overeat when you're celebrating with your family. And it's even more important to take your medications over the holidays. But some amount of stress over holiday planning and activities is unavoidable – and you're obviously going to eat and drink more than you usually do. Luckily, researchers found that getting a massage can help protect your heart from these cardiovascular-taxing holiday activities.

According to the University of Utah Health Care, getting a massage lowers stress and blood pressure while also improving your circulation. All of these relieve strain on your heart and help bring more oxygen and nutrients to your deprived cardiac tissues. Doctors found these protective effects last for up to a week. Getting a massage a few days before you enjoy the holidays helps shield your cardiovascular system for the entirety of the holidays. If you stay away for longer, simply ask a loved one to give you another massage.

But massages do more than just protect your heart. According to CentredTherapies in Lincoln, experts also found that getting regular massages helps alleviate depression, asthma, back pain, fibromyalgia pain, and much more. Massage therapy has even been found to improve your digestion, which also helps protect you when you feast with your family.

But one of the most noted benefits of getting massages is their ability to boost your immunity. Researchers found that a single massage boosts your immunity, but participants who get regular massages for five weeks experienced improved endocrine responses and healthier hormone profiles in their brain and the rest of their nervous system. They even found that repeated massages may even help treat HIV!

If you're getting a professional massage, don't forget your feet! Harvard says that foot massages can relieve pain, tension, and improve circulation in your feet. They say doing so is even more important during the holidays because that's when you're on your feet rushing to shop and attend numerous holiday events. Massaging your feet acts like a diagnostic tool when you're too busy during the holidays that lets you check for and treat blisters, toenail problems, bunions, and other potentially harmful conditions that can lead to infections. You can even do it yourself! Here's what they advise:

First, sit comfortably. Bend one of your legs and rest your raised foot on your thigh. Pour lotion or oil on your hands and gently rub it all over your foot – don't forget to get all of your toes, heel, and arch. For a deeper massage you can use your knuckles or thumbs of both hands.
Stretch the muscles underneath your toes by pulling your toes back and forth gently. Repeat the whole process with your other foot!

Get a massage before rushing off to see your loved ones for Christmas – it will help protect your heart from the holy festivities. Don't forget to massage your feet too!