Almost of all of us go to great lengths in the quest for good health, while we overlook one simple and fast daily practice that can do wonders for our body and mind. That simple practice is called foot massage and requires a very little time. Daily massages can have far-reaching benefits, many of which are based in reflexology.
The Health Benefits of Reflexology
Reflexology is a safe and completely natural enhancer of the quality of your life. It uses massage therapy techniques to stimulate nerves, mostly in the palm of your hand and bottom of your foot. Each of these nerves branches off to different organs and glands in your body.
Reflexology can help you live a happier and more importantly a healthier life. It can help with cold symptoms, stress, to alleviate headaches and many other daily inconveniences.
Reflexology has been used for centuries and it has maintained a large following over the millennia because of the effectiveness in providing relief and promoting good health.
The Health Benefits of Foot Massage
In the realm of reflexology, the key to every body part lies in the sole of the foot.
Massaging your feet each night before going to sleep can bring relief to a pair of sore feet after a long day and bring wellness to your entire body by stimulating pressure points.
Below you can few benefits of foot massage
1. Foot massage promotes mental health and wellness
Foot massages on a daily basis can help keep the psychological aspects of your health in balance.
According to a 1999 study, a five-minute massage can reduce stress, blood pressure and heart rate to critical care patients.
A 2010 study showed that massage of the soft tissues of the hands or feet can bring emotional comfort to people grieving the death of a loved one.
Another study found that participants with stressful jobs felt reduced anxiety levels and improvement in the mood after a 10-minute foot massage.
2. Foot massage can serve as a natural pain relief
Foot massage can relief you of pain in general, not only pain in the feet.
A 2004 study showed that post-operative patients reported a greater reduction in their pain symptoms after a massage of the feet or hands compared to those who only used pain medication.
Another study showed that women who have been given foot massage after a C-section birth reported reduced post-op pain compared to the placebo group.
3. Foot can provide some relief to cancer symptoms and chemotherapy side effects
Studies are confirming that cancer patients are feeling a relief from the pain after a foot massage.
A 2012 study showed that breast cancer patients reported a dramatic reduction in physical symptoms, shortness of breath and improved energy levels after a foot massage.
4. Foot massage can ease Multiple Sclerosis symptom
A team of Iranian researchers found that reflexology was able to provide some relief from the crippling fatigue that so many people with multiple sclerosis suffer from.
5. Foot massage can lower your blood pressure
Research is showing that reflexology foot massage can lower your high blood pressure significantly.
Another study is showing that the systolic blood pressure and blood triglyceride levels were both improved after a therapeutic massage.
Further research found that patients with high blood pressure receiving massage specifically targeted at reducing blood pressure had symptom improvement that was significant enough that they were able to reduce dosages of their high blood pressure medications while undergoing the reflexology-based treatment.
6. Foot massage for relief of PMS symptoms
According to a 1993 study, women reported a reduction in their PMS symptoms following a reflexology—including foot massage therapy.
7. Foot massage for swollen legs
A 2010 study found that pregnancy-related edema was significantly reduced by a regular foot massage.
How to give a healing foot massage
One of the best gifts to a friend or a loved one is a relaxing and healing foot massage.
Below you can see one of many techniques for giving a foot massage:
- Put some warm lotion or oil in your hand. Smooth the lotion or oil over the foot.
- Hold the foot with both hands and rub the top of the foot using a firm motion with your thumbs. Start at the tip of each toe and move slowly all the way up to the ankle. Move back towards the toes and rub with a lighter stroke. Repeat this step 2 or more times.
- While holding the foot with both hands, move your thumbs to the bottom of the foot and start rubbing it. Start at the tip of each toe and move your thumbs down towards the heel. Go back in the direction of the toes and rub the bottom of the foot with your thumbs. Repeat this step 2 or more times.
- Repeat the same steps on the other foot.