Moody Hormones Meet Your Match: Massage Therapy

hormalHormonal ups and downs can wreak havoc on your life.  They can affect your mood, your weight, your food cravings, even your desire for sex.  For many women, hormones balance normally and it’s smooth sailing–but for others, any imbalance can be a train wreck.

Enter massage therapy. Among the many benefits of massage therapy are those related to the body’s production and regulation of neurohormones. Neurohormones are produced by the nervous system and affect an individual’s behavior and general well-being. Recent studies have solidly concluded that massage can help balance mood levels by moving your body toward homeostasis (a naturally balanced state). And the story’s even better! Research conducted at the TOUCH Research Institute at the University of Miami suggests that massage increases the availability of all neurohormones affecting brain chemistry.

Massage tends to elevate the levels of dopamine, a neurohormone released by the hypothalamus gland. Dopamine influences fine motor activity like painting, playing a musical instrument or navigating with a mouse. It affects intuition, inspiration, joy, and enthusiasm. If your dopamine fall, you will likely exhibit clumsiness, poor focus, and be easily distracted.
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Massage Therapy Can Help Depression

 

depressionblogDepression is a huge public health issue, and treatment ranges from pet therapy to heavy-dose medication. A research report published by the American Journal of Psychiatry indicates that massage may help.

While massage can ease stress and tension and may have emotional benefits, studies of the use of massage therapy in depressed patients were lacking.

 “Overall, the studies showed that massage therapy had “potentially significant effects” in alleviating symptoms of depression” (American Journal of Psychiatry, March 2010)

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