Health & Wellness Articles

The Secret Benefits of Massage

The Easiest Way to Combat Stress & Fight Fat


Just got a professional massage yesterday. First one ever. Swedish. Unbelievable relaxation. Took me out of my daily chaos and melted me right into the table. Sound faded into a shadowy haze. Muscles reawakened. Ability to speak--gone.

In other words, I liked it.

It's true what we're learning. Stress can cause you to store fat right where you want it the least--in the belly. And what fights stress better than a luxurious massage? It may be the single most enjoyable way to keep the weight off.

If you think adding massage to your lifestyle sounds too good to be true, let's look at how and why it works:

High Anxiety = Heavy Anxiety
Tension and stress lead directly to weight gain. Stress produces the cortisol hormone. Cortisol, besides causing major damage to tissue and nerves when stored up, also signals the production of insulin. Some extra insulin sounds harmless enough, except that it tells your body to store fat in the abdomen, as more and more studies are showing.

To fight this, you can either burn off the cortisol through exercise (still recommended by the way), or keep it from producing in the first place by staying relaxed. Like, say, through a massage.

Junk Food Is No Accident
Storing more fat isn't the only outcome of needless insulin production. It also causes you to crave sugary, high carb foods and snacks. So maybe those traumatic urges to binge aren't just in your head. They're biological reactions to stress.

You get hit with a double whammy. While stress is promoting fat storage, it's also getting you to eat more food that can easily turn into fat. More massage means fewer munching binges.

TLC For Your Muscles
Finally, the touch and pressure of massage stimulates blood flow and may help boost your metabolism. You can actually feel your body temperature rise during a massage. And we all know what a higher metabolism can do for keeping weight off. Not only that, but the contact loosens your muscles, which helps with muscle tone and appearance.

This has all convinced me to get another massage, soon. Sure, it comes with great mental benefits of well-being, peacefulness and human connection. But next time, I'll also feel good that I'm not just enjoying myself - I'm working hard to fight that fat!

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Member Comments

  • I so desperately need a massage! But I've always been afraid to get one just for the simple fact my butt sticks out further than I would like it to.....and I am self-conscious of what the masseur would think while massaging my back!
  • I use massages as a treat and my favorite is the hot stone massage, Oh yeah Sparkfriend!
  • Would love to get a massage. $$$$$$??
  • did not enjoy this at all
  • I had a friend who's husband was a massage therapist. She said it was wonderfull. !
  • I have a regular massage which was full body by professional & a Chinese one. They were ok but the professional one was better. I just recently started I am so ticklish that they had to basically be rough. No touching my lower back & bottom I actually laughed loudly too. Ha!
  • Wish there was an affordable ebswer yo thid.
    Thanks for posting some of the health benefits of getting a massage. I didn't really think about how massage could help with high anxiety. It makes sense because it is supposed to relieve stress and make you more comfortable. I will have to keep this in mind next time I am stressed. Thanks for the help!
  • Love getting them, but I especially enjoy the "hot stones" therapy during the message session!!! Nothing beats that for me.

    Thanks for reminding me of how good massages really are!!!
  • I purchased a book Called the Trigger Point Therapy Workbook that was extreamly educational and showed me where to locate my trigger points and how to properly massage them myself. I would strongly recommend this to anyone who wants to learn how to manage and diminish their own pain without having to see someone else and pay expensive fees. It wasn't to difficult to understand or learn and with a little practice you can relieve your own pain and feel mobility once again.
  • I've been getting regular professional massages for 15 yrs now. They really help relieve my muscle pain and tension. I think the author is a bit overly optimistic in his assertions that massage can prevent weight gain or even aid in weight loss. I do not believe this is true, except maybe indirectly--- people are less likely to stress eat when relaxed. Whether or not massage helps with weight control, I recommend it.
  • I love them. My hubby aalways give me one. It feel so great.
  • Ahhh luv a massage!
  • Massage = high anxiety for me. I don't like strangers touching me.

About The Author

Mike Kramer Mike Kramer
As a writer and artist, Mike has witnessed countless motivational stories and techniques. See all of Mike's articles.