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Research Shows Massage Reduces Stress Hormones & Blood Pressure

Image: healingdream / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
The New York Times reports on new research from The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine regarding the "Preliminary Study of the Effects of a Single Session of Swedish Massage on Hypothalamic–Pituitary–Adrenal and Immune Function in Normal Individuals." The report says that there is an increase in oxytocin which affects the Hypothalamic–Pituitary–Adrenal axis which in the end reduces ACTH and cortisol, a stress hormone. Oxytocin is used for breast feeding, giving birth with uterine contractions and other functions. Cortisol affects many biological functions like inhibiting insulin (reduced blood sugar metabolism), reducing collagen (increased skin wrinkles), reduced stomach & kidney functions, inhibiting sodium secretion (inhibiting normal blood ion levels), increasing blood pressure, reduces immunity by inhibiting copper function and T cells, lowers bone formation (increased osteoporosis), increases "flash-bulb memories" but in the long term damages the hippocampus for impaired learning. The results are preliminary but they do make sense theoretically. Now you have a reason to go out and get a massage.


ChiroWorks Care Center
Anthony Tsai, D.C.
Chiropractor in San Jose, CA
ChiroWorksCareCenter.com
Graston Technique Certified
FAKTR-PM Completed

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References:
Ronin Caryn Rabin: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/21/health/research/21regimens.html?emc=eta1
Mark Hyman Rapaport, Pamela Schettler, Catherine Bresee: http://www.liebertonline.com/doi/abs/10.1089/acm.2009.0634
Elizabeth Scott, M.S.: http://stress.about.com/od/stresshealth/a/cortisol.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cortisol
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oxytocin
http://nccam.nih.gov/

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