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According to multiple pieces of research, you should consider massages part of your toolkit of strategies to maintain solid mental health, as the latter is considered as one of the biggest issues of the 21st century, but ignored by many people.
Therefore, let’s take a few moments and discuss the positive impact massages can have on your mental well-being, shall we?
It can stimulate the production of feel-good hormones, responsible for alleviating depression
Depression is one of those conditions which can be not visible at all, able to make people feel like they don’t even get out of bed. However, according to several studies, there is a strong correlation between massage therapy and alleviation of many depressive symptoms.
Specifically, it was proven that one of the main massage benefits is affecting body chemistry, thus increasing serotonin and dopamine, the two neurotransmitters involved in depression.
Since massage involves human touch, it can help individuals ‘get rid’ of loneliness, one of the most isolating feelings of depression, by releasing oxytocin, also known as the “cuddle hormone” and responsible for triggering an increased social bonding.
Regular massage sessions can soothe anxiety
Anxiety itself can turn into bigger mental health issues, so for some people, laying on a massage table, alone with their thoughts, can sound like a big challenge. Still, it can help a lot!
A massage session can significantly reduce the amount of build-up stress in the body, thus helping you forget about the anxiety that runs throughout your veins. But this is not everything, as it has been proven that it diminishes the level of cortisol, known as the stress hormone, by almost 30 per cent! And this can really help your body fight anxiety!
As a side note, a study conducted in 2010 showed that a short-term 50 per cent anxiety reduction when it comes to anxiety symptoms can be observed after constant massaging sessions.
It can help you concentrate better
One of the most ignored massage benefits is its ability to solve concentration issues. We know, it sounds surprising, but you should know that this is one of the ways you can boost your ability to handle tasks better.
Technically speaking, the lack of concentration is caused by muscle tension, which eventually diverts blood flow from your brain. However, massage can help release this, increasing the nutrient flow and the amount of oxygen reaching your brain, allowing you to step up your focus.
Studies have also shown that even a 15-minute session in a massage chair can decrease frontal alpha and beta power, which results in enhanced alertness. Even more, people who got massages admitted increased speed and accuracy on math problems!
Last but not least, we shouldn’t forget about probably one of the primary massage benefits: improving circulation.
The body’s lymphatic system is basically the equivalent to a drainage system, being able to remove toxins, as well as waste build-up and bacteria, thus protecting it against any threats.
By applying pressure on the body, the lymphatic system receives a huge boost and detoxifies itself with more ease. But this is not everything as your circulation will improve as well, creating a really nice feeling of freshness!
To wrap it up, a massage session can offer you a lot, whether it’s your mental health or just overall well-being. Schedule your appointment at Maria’s Professional Massage of Clearwater today and you will experience these benefits yourself, even after just one session.
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Have you ever thought about how beneficial a massage for runners is? Sure it not only feels good, but there are so many amazing benefits to having a massage. In this article, we will discuss the top benefits of getting a massage.
Massages for runners can be scheduled at different intervals. Some individuals may only need a massage once a month, while others will find it beneficial to have a massage once a week. These plans are completely individualized to each person in order to get the most out of a massage. In order to find what works best for you, you will need to not only determine what your goals are for running but also what your budget is.
You should also decide when the best time to schedule a massage is in order to get the most out of it. Look at your running calendar. Are there any races or long runs scheduled? If so, plan your massage around them. It could be in your favor to schedule your massages for two or three days after a long run or race. Do not schedule your appointment a day or two before the race or long run as the massage could leave you sore. Likewise, do not schedule your massage a day after either as your body needs time to recover first.
Now that we have talked about how and when to schedule a massage for runners, let us look at the actual benefits. If you are not very flexible, a massage for runners is great. A massage therapist can easily help get the body to be more flexible. Many people may have trouble with their flexibility as they age. Or if they are just starting to run or beginning an exercise program, they may not be that flexible. But scheduling a massage on a regular basis can really help.
Another benefit of massage for runners is that it promotes better circulation. This means your entire body will be much healthier. Your organs will be allowed more oxygen and cells will be permitted to grow. As an added benefit, the skin will look healthier.
A massage for runners can also reduce muscle fatigue and soreness. This will allow a person to be ready for their next run. Recovery is an essential part of any workout, as if the body can not recover fully, there will not be any gain. Massage could possibly reduce inflammation, reduce stress levels, and improve the immune system.
Did you know that massage for runners can also improve the pulmonary function. It does this by loosening tight respiratory muscles. And these massages can encourage fast removal of metabolic waste products as well.
Massages for runners should be scheduled several times before a big race. Only having one massage administered is not going to help very much. But having a series of massages will allow the body to reap all of the benefits. Any massage you receive should be done by a licensed and trained massage therapist, such as Maria’s Professional Massage.
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Losing weight and fighting obesity, in particular, are some of the most popular subjects, as people are constantly looking for methods of obtaining great results quickly. There are tons of available diets, some of them good, some bad, but, unfortunately, there’s no magic formula for losing weight overnight. Well, except liposuction, of course, but that’s another story.
However, it appears that scientists made a surprising discovery: a simple cup of coffee can have some positive effects on humans’ brown fat functions.
To be more specific, brown fat – or good fat, as it’s also known – helps our bodies turn nutrients into energy, thus generating heat. In contrast, other types of fat, known as yellow or white fat, result from storing calories in excess.
Therefore, knowing that it’s impossible to have zero fat in our bodies, it’s obvious that brown fat deposits can actually help us have overall great health, maintain a lean silhouette, as well as proper body weight.
And how can we achieve this? Apparently, drinking one cup of coffee per day!
According to a study conducted at the School of Medicine at the University of Nottingham and conducted by Professor Michael Symonds, caffeine has indeed an effect on thermogenesis or brown fat heat generation.
The study began with exposing adipocytes, the fat-storing cells, to caffeine, eventually noticing that this can significantly increase the levels of UCP1, but also boost the cells’ metabolism.
The next step was to validate the same changing on humans, so through thermal imaging, they were able to spot brown fat reserves in the human body, in the neck region, evaluating their overall heat-generating abilities.
It resulted that the effects of drinking a cup of coffee were similar to those of drinking water, but coffee can actually stimulate the temperature of the supraclavicular region. This is where a lot of brown fat accumulates, indicating thermogenesis.
“We need to ascertain whether caffeine, as one of the main ingredients in coffee, is acting as the stimulus or if there’s another component helping with the activation of brown fat. We are currently looking at caffeine supplements to test whether the effect is similar,” Prof. Symonds revealed.
The conclusion of this study could be considered a great start of a revolutionary weight management regime, as well as part of a glucose regulation program, able to prevent obesity or diabetes, as soon as the team will confirm which component is responsible for storing brown fat.
Besides helping you fight obesity, brown fat has way more benefits over one’s health, improving blood sugar control and blood lipid levels. Still, until this happens some time will pass, as there’s no way of stimulating such activity in humans.
Generally speaking, the study’s conclusions are amazing, as it was the first time when it was proving that something as plain as a cup of coffee can have direct effects on brown fat functions. Obviously, the potential implications are really big, since obesity is one of humanity’s major concerns, not to mention the constantly growing diabetes epidemic. Simply put, finding a way to stimulate brown fat can be a solution for a lot of health issues.
There are definitely people out there who are excited after hearing such news, as they are planning to rely on coffee for losing weight. As for those who want slightly faster results, they can opt for something like a massage, as it was proven that it destroys fat-storing cells. But its main purpose is definitely making you feel better!
At Maria’s Professional massage you can start on the path to having a healthier mind and body. Schedule and an appointment today and begin your transformation.
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If you have ever had a massage, you know that they feel great. They can help to relax the entire body, eliminating stress. For some people, they help relieve a headache, and for others, a massage is part of their weekly or monthly plan for having what is called “me” or alone time.
There are various different kinds of massages that can be given. Some like using relaxation massages while others swear by deep tissue massages. Cupping massages are an alternative that many will use while others prefer to use barefoot massages. Warm bamboo massages can feel great to many individuals that want their muscles to relax while others like Thai Yoga massages.
All of the massages listed above are said to relieve tension in the body, as well as melt away stress. Others state that pain and discomfort are dissolved. No matter what, body massages do lower the toxicity levels of the body, increase blood circulation, improves Lymphatic drainage, and improves muscle tone and flexibility. Massages have been known to reduce fatigue, improve sleep quality, reduce fibromyalgia pain, enhance exercise performance, decrease the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, decrease pain in those that suffer from arthritis, improve balance in older adults, help chronic neck pain, and manage lower back pain.
But how well does massage work? Well, this is a question that can be tricky to answer. According to a massage therapist at the University of Alberta, the answer is not always right in front of us.
Massages are difficult to measure how well they work. While there are benefits for the body and mind in massage, one thing that should always be done at a massage is fulfilling the needs of the client and addressing their main concerns.
A massage therapist should be connecting with the four major physiological systems while trying to manipulate the soft tissue which can obtain favorable results for the client.
The neuromuscular system will be addressed while a massage is taking place. This not only includes the muscles but the nerves as well. Muscles that are tight or weak can be worked on.
The second part of the body that a massage therapist will work on will be the connective tissues. Tendons, ligaments, scar tissues, and cartilage fall into this category. Range of motion can be increased when a massage works on these places.
The circulatory system can benefit by increasing the blood flow to the tissue. More oxygen will be delivered this way and metabolic waste can be gotten rid of.
And finally, the autonomic system can benefit from a massage as it helps to regulate the heart rate. Using massage on this system can help individuals calm down when anxious or stressed out.
One of the best things about massages is that after a person has had one, they will feel the effects for a long while afterward.
Research has found that massages do help with Parkinson’s disease and dementia. The reasoning for this is because a soft massage can decrease anxiety and aggressiveness.
“We can gain some insight by working with other disciplines in medicine and science such as physiotherapy, sports medicine, and chemistry. They have the ability to measure the different molecular structures within blood and tissues, and then we can see if we’re making a difference as massage therapists,” Deborah McIntyre stated.
If you are looking for a massage therapist that can help out various conditions you may have, consider trying Maria’s Professional Massage. Here you will find a high-quality massage that uses various techniques and modalities to help any condition you want to treat.
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More and more people are turning to various exercises as a way to get healthy. Many attend weekly yoga classes, others swim daily, and some find a combination of running and walking do the trick. However the more a person exercises, the more likely they are to develop an injury.
But the good news is there are ways to relieve pain when one does get injured. One of the key elements in feeling better is to have a sports massage done. The best kind of sport massage will include the use of topical pain relief products. These products can help reduce inflammation and alleviate pain.
Those that use sport massage can find great relief when incorporating topical pain products into their healing schedule. A therapist could use a topical spray to the affected area. It can then be wrapped or kinesiology tape can be placed over it. The therapist may also recommend a therapeutic balm to nourish the skin overnight. This balm can also increase the circulation to the painful area, which will help to lessen the aches. The skin will also be soothed when it is rubbed in.
Sports massages work great with topical pain relief for many reasons. They contain a variety of ingredients (ginger, ho wood, and turmeric) that help to prevent muscle aches and stiffness. These ingredients also warm the aching muscles so they can relax and assist in increasing circulation to the area that is injured.
Other ingredients that work well with sports massages include witch hazel for diminishing pain and fatigue and arnica to help with pain and inflammation. Pain can also be managed with magnesium sulfate.
Chili pepper extract, known as Capsaicin, is a very effective ingredient for pain. This hot topical pain relief works well to soothe the area, causing an analgesic effect. Many receiving sports massages have excellent results with this product.
Sports massages can be done in a variety of ways. Fascia work is often done to open up different muscle groups. Lymphatic work can be done if the area is inflamed or swollen.
If you want a massage that allows the use of topical pain relievers, consider using kinetic chain release. In this sports massage, the person is fully clothed. Large areas that are injured, such as the back or shoulders, have a great effect when a sports massage is used in combination with topical pain relief.
If you have been injured while playing a sport or exercising, you know how painful it can be to heal. Sports massages can help one heal faster and bring relief. If you need a sports massage to help your pain, consider contacting Maria’s Professional Massage offers sports massages that utilize several techniques and modalities. Not only will you heal your body, but you will bring a sense of peace and relaxation to yourself, which is essential in today’s busy world!
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Lately, people are looking forward to discovering ways of staying healthy until a late age, which is nothing but great news. We all know how important is to pay your doctor a visit regularly or stick to a daily – if your schedule allows it – exercise routine, combined with a healthy diet.
On the other side, it’s less known that proper massage therapy, conducted by a professional, can also have a huge impact on one’s health. In fact, let’s take a few moments and see which are the essential benefits of this type of therapy!
It relieves stress
There’s no doubt that this is one of the main benefits massage therapy comes with. It was scientifically proven that being constantly exposed to stress can increase the risk of heart disease, but also diabetes or hypertension, so getting massage regularly is pretty much one of the best things one can try in order to deal with what’s called “the disease of the 21st century”.
A massage session can be an intensely relaxing experience, as you’re simply lying back and feel how the tension ‘living’ your muscles is immediately going away.
It helps you get better sleep
The lack of sleep can also be a tremendous problem, affecting the majority of adults in the United States and leading to a range of chronic conditions, like cardiovascular disease, depression, diabetes, or even obesity. But guess what? Massage therapy can be one of the best solutions to it.
By getting rid of muscle tension and setting a moment in the day when you slow down a bit, you can enter a prolonged state of intense relaxation, which can last long after the massage session.
No more high blood pressure
How many times did you analyze your diet? Just do it once and you’ll most likely notice that you are eating too much…salt. Yes, salt, and this has a negative impact on your blood pressure, placing a strain on the heart, leading to hypertension and increasing the risk of a stroke.
It was proven that massage therapy can contribute to reducing high blood pressure, lowering systolic, as well as diastolic blood pressure. Also, according to recent research, it regulates the levels of cortisol, the hormone responsible for raising the pressure.
It strengthens the immune system
Recent studies have proven that massage can significantly improve the response of the immune system. Specifically, people who started massage therapy admitted experiencing a notable spike in the production of lymphocytes, the cells responsible for protecting your body from diseases.
Combined with its stress relieving ‘powers’, a massage session could be incredibly helpful for anybody who wants to maintain their immunity at top levels.
So, supercharging your health through massage sounds like an excellent idea, don’t you think? If you’re located in the Clearwater area, Maria is the one who can help you. Combining multiple massage types, including Ashiatsu, Cupping, Deep Tissue, or even Warm Bamboo, with her modern anatomical knowledge and the philosophy of Asian culture, she is the one who can introduce you to massage therapy and its full benefits.
Picture Credit: Nicole De Khors
One popular belief says that in order to lose some weight and obtain that slim look you always wanted, you need to exercise like crazy. Well, it’s time to bust the myth: That’s not true. You can lose more weight if you start eating less, instead of exercising. Actually, you can do it by paying more attention to what you’re eating and don’t exercise at all.
The idea is simple: in order to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume. Exercising consumes far fewer calories than many people think. Let’s say that you go for a 30 minutes jog. In that amount of time, you manage to burn less than 350 calories, as long as you have a constant pace, but more people can’t do this, so the amount of burnt calories is smaller.
Sure, exercising has its benefits, but there are way more problems with it when it comes to relying on it to control your weight. And studies also confirm this.
A 2011 meta-analysis – a study of studies, that is – found that being active is not actually the key determinant in whether a child reached an unhealthy weight. As for the adult population, studies had difficulties finding if a physically active person is less likely to gain excess weight than a person who can be considered sedentary.
Besides all these, it’s important to mention that exercise increases appetite. Therefore, if you go for a jog – or any other type of exercise – it’s somehow difficult to lose weight if you can’t control your appetite, as your body will send signals, asking you to replace them.
But we’re not saying that exercise and maintaining a good fitness state plays no role in your mission.
Adding exercise to diets is definitely beneficial! The idea is to combine exercise with diet, for more sustained weight loss, but for longer periods, like at least a year. Studies have shown that doing this for shorter periods, like six months, made little to no difference.
Therefore, why this belief that only by exercising you can drop some pounds? It’s actually very simple.
A lot of people can manage to find at least an hour in their daily schedule to go to the gym, but complain that they don’t have the time to prepare a healthy meal, able to help them with their weight loss efforts. The truth is that if they would try spending just half the time they dedicate to exercising to prepare a healthy meal, they would see much better results.
Last but not least, we need to mention one more aspect that has a big impact on your weight: stress. It is highly recommended to totally avoid it and your fitness can significantly improve.
A great way to relieve the pressure of everyday life is through massage. Thanks to specialized training and years of experience, as well as an Asian heritage, Maria’s Professional Massage can help you obtain a healthier mind and body.
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If you had a long day, sitting relaxed on the couch with your significant other and watching some Netflix sounds very good. But how about enjoying that amazing feeling you get after working out intensely, right after you’re done with your job?
Of course you do, but in order to achieve this, let’s see how we can get you motivated enough!
Set some personal goals
…and we’re not talking just about setting them in your mind, as writing down is one of the best things you can do. Seeing the things you want to achieve jotted down on a piece of paper can have a powerful impact, as it reminds you why you’re going to the gym. And this is the key to staying motivated!
For an extra boost of gym motivation, pin that piece of paper in your office, so you can see it all day long.
Plan your workouts
Putting down your workouts ahead of time will make you less likely to skip them. In order to do this, start your week by deciding which days you will be visiting the gym and plan a routine for each one.
At the end of the workout, look back at your plan and see what you managed to accomplish. This will make you feel amazing and keep the momentum going.
We know, this may sound a bit unusual, but starting up the day with a great breakfast will help you throughout the day, as your body remains energized and ready for a workout when you clock out.
Get equipped before leaving work
By doing this, you’re basically giving yourself a visual reminder that you are committed to working out as soon as you leave office, not to mention that it’s great for holding yourself accountable.
The idea is simple here: after changing into your workout clothes, you will feel way worse about backing out. And there you have it, gym motivation in an instant!
Track your progress
No, we’re not saying that you should post on social media or check-in each time you enter the gym – after all, what normal person still does that? – but keeping record of your training sessions in a dedicated app can actually transform into some real gym motivation.
When you will see better and better results with each day, you won’t be tempted to skip your after work session anymore. After all, you want to beat last week’s personal record, right?
Train with a gym buddy
The simple fact that you’re meeting a friend at the gym – and you don’t want to make him or her wait for you and train alone – will make you less likely to back out. Eventually, you can grab dinner and some drinks together, after the workout. And this sounds even better if you have a cheat day…
On the side, after an intense workout session, you can also opt for a massage! Besides relaxing your muscles and helping you avoid any pain, a massage will also reduce your stress levels and improve your overall health and well-being.
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Day by day, we keep seeing tons of ads for various products, promising to keep us looking as young as possible. Apparently, people are terrified by the idea of getting older and try to hide any signs age puts on their faces. Sure this can be done with make-up, intense training, a healthy lifestyle and, why not, some Botox.
But these do cost. A lot.
What if we told you that there are a few secrets of how can one stay young and have a great health, without using any of the above-mentioned things? Let’s take a few moments, relax, and see what can you do…
Take a break
If you’re reading this while on a comfortable chair, you’re on the right path, as one of the most important things you can do is to give yourself a break from time to time.
According to recent studies, stress causes physical changes in the body, thus accelerating the aging process. These days, there are stress factors all over, so the most effective way to break this destructive chain of events is to meditate. Even if it’s for as little as 10 minutes per day.
Pick a quiet place, close your eyes, fully relax and breathe deeply. Then thank us in a few years.
Besides helping you lose weight and being excellent for your health, regular exercise is also great for toning muscles, building healthier bones and – very important – boost your mood and help you think clearly.
Actually, there’s a connection between physical exercise and better brain power!
“Walking for just 10 minutes a day lowers your risk of Alzheimer’s by 40 percent,” says Gary Small, MD, director of the UCLA Center on Aging. “Physical conditioning reduces stress and anxiety, which wipe out your memory bank.”
A few short workouts per week are a great start. Running, biking, swimming, you name it. If it gets you off the couch, your health can improve and you will stay young!
Drink some wine
Believe it or not, a study showed that mice on a high-fat diet supplemented with a substance found in the skin of grapes had way longer average lifespans than those who weren’t given the substance.
Resveratrol, the substance we’re talking about, reduces the risk of diabetes and liver problem in mice, besides other benefits. So basically, if you’re drinking one glass of wine per day, you’re constantly helping it to maintain its health. Just make sure you keep it within the limits.
Consume more good fat
This can be a pretty surprising piece of advice, but we’re actually talking about fats that are good for your health, like Omega-3 fatty acids, like the ones found in salmon. These play an important role in stabilizing your mood, as well as maintaining bone structure and helping prevent visible signs of aging, something we’re all after.
“Omega-3s also boost the ability of the body’s enzymes to pull fat out of storage — from your hips, say — and use it as energy,” says Nicholas Perricone, MD, a leading anti-aging expert and author of 7 Secrets to Beauty, Health, and Longevity. “Omega-3s keep you healthy and your skin radiant.”
As mentioned above, the best way to start this journey is to relax from time to time. Meditation can be great, but sometimes, nothing compares to a good massage. And Maria knows exactly how to reduce your stress levels and improve your overall health and well-being.
Schedule an appointment today and embark on the road to obtaining a healthier body and mind.
Picture Credit: Nguyen Thi Minh Nguyet