The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention post that our nation is housing more than 70 million baby boomers that are nearing the retirement years and are expecting health-care costs to rise due to illness, disease and injury. Prevention is one method we all hold a certain level of accountability for that can aid in the reduction of health-care costs through conscious living and body/mind health maintenance.
Baby boomers are a more active generation than their predecessors which shows great potential for maintaining a healthier lifestyle than can produce vitality that many tend to believe is lost once we get ‘old’. Now is the time to realize that growing older doesn’t mean growing old. While you’re accomplishing a new yoga pose or taking in a morning surf and the questions arise about what more can be done in your regimen to keep renewing your health? What else can you do to be active in prevention of disease and illness from within? Keep in mind your body holds the answers! Massage and bodywork is becoming more recognized for its healing and restorative nature rather than seen as a mere self pampering tool. The effects of this feel-good session are truly deeper than you may have once thought.
Improved Circulation, Healthier Skin (Inside and Out)
During the aging process our circulation slows and our skin loses its resilience. Loss of body tone and pigmentation both begin to reveal what kind of lives we live on a day to day basis. The youthful vitality and bounce is barely noticeable. Many experts are expressing the mechanical nature of massage and bodywork as a combater to these effects by increasing circulation through tissue manipulation, improving the appearance and condition of the skin and its elasticity, and toning muscle tissue. Continuous massage over a period of time can reveal results of a much improved overall skin appearance. Massaging stimulates cellular function in the hypodermis, dermis, and epidermis layers of the skin and increases the production of skin-nurturing sebum. Your skin will show decreases in wrinkles and expression lines and the skin color will illuminate a healthy glow to ensure you that not only are you stress free, you are healthy inside and out.
Susceptibility and Stress
Not many people pay enough attention to their bodies to realize just how detrimental stress can be to the body. Experts say the majority of disease we encounter today is associated with stress and even though we cannot prevent all stressors in our daily activities, we can definitely learn to eliminate the stressors we do have control over.
If that is not enough, stress is a huge factor in premature aging of the body. Researches have shown chronic stress to make cells appear up to 17 years older than they really are. Stress aggravate, and sometimes can be the leading cause for problems such as heart disease, gastrointestinal disorders, depression disorders, and more noticeably decreased immune function.
Massage is one of the leading methods for stress reduction. Through its effects, massage decreases stress, while boosting the immune system. Massage encourages the release of oxytocin, a stress-reducing hormone in the body most often associated with birth and bonding, and activates the parasympathetic nervous system and its relaxation response. Massage reduces cortisol levels and increases dopamine and serotonin levels in the body, all of which are linked to decreased stress.
While aging is never going to be a process anyone truly looks forward to, it can be accepted as a positive journey with new accomplishments to reach. Massage and bodywork should be enlisted as a routine health regimen to help you stay vital, healthy, and strong along the way.