Ten ways to reduce inflammation through Ashiatsu massage and Proper Nutrition
Many people experience inflammation. Some from time to time, and some have chronic inflammation. Actions that you can take to reduce inflammation may seem at first glance to be a luxury but on further review can be found to be imperative to your health. Health that you will need to continue to lead a strong and productive life. That means designating money to excellent nutrition, supplementation, physical activities and alternative medicines. The good news is that diet, exercise (including massage) and lifestyle changes can be powerful tools against inflammation. Here are 10 ways you can help stave off—or tamp down—inflammation.
Enjoy a Massage - Of course I am a huge advocate for massage. Especially Ashiatsu Massage. However, a massage isn’t just a treat—it can be part of staying healthy. According to a study in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine. “Massage may decrease inflammatory substances by [appropriately] increasing the amount of disease-fighting white blood cells in the body,” says Mark Hyman Rapaport, M.D., co-author of the study. “It may also lower stress hormones. Either way, these inflammation-lowering results can be seen after just one massage.” (Book Your Massage With Me Today- Click Here)
Balance Your Omega Fats - Yes, balancing your fats can help you reduce inflammation. To balance your omega fats, opt for as much fresh, unprocessed food as possible, swap your omega-6-rich corn or sunflower oil for omega-3-packed canola and load your plate with omega-3-rich foods. If it proves difficult to get the recommended 1 to 4 grams of omega-3s daily through food (3 ounces of salmon delivers about 2 grams, 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed has 3 grams), ask your doctor about taking a supplement.
Up Your Soy - The Food and Drug Administration has indicated that eating 25 grams of soy protein daily helps to reduce your risk of inflammation-driven cardiovascular disease. But according to two 2009 studies, even as little as half that may be helpful (if you have a hormone-sensitive condition, such as breast cancer or endometriosis, check with your doctor before increasing the amount of soy in your diet).
Limit Bad Fats - The Nurses’ Health Study out of Harvard found that trans-fatty acids are linked to a significant bump in total body inflammation, especially in overweight women. Trans fats can be found in items including fried foods, packaged cookies, crackers, margarines and more. Check the ingredient list for partially hydrogenated oil, and if you see this, the product contains trans fats. Cut back on the saturated variety as well, replacing butter with olive oil and being choosy about your protein sources.
Eat Your Greens - Green leafy vegetables, whole grains and nuts are all rich in magnesium, a mineral that about 60 percent of us don’t consume enough of. “I encourage anyone who’s susceptible to inflammation to assess their magnesium intake,” says Forrest H. Nielsen, Ph.D., a research nutritionist at the USDA’s Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center in North Dakota. (Ask your doctor to check your magnesium levels with a blood test.)
Keep Stress at Bay - Does stress cause inflammation? YES! A study in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity found that stress increases blood pressure and heart rate, making your blood vessels work harder. Essentially, you’re pounding on them more often and creating damage. If that damage happens over and over, inflammation persists.
Sleep More - If you’re not clocking at least 6 hours of restful sleep a night, you’re more susceptible to inflammation than those who have a solid night of slumber, according to research presented at the American Heart Association 2010 Scientific Sessions in Chicago.
Exercise Often - How does exercising reduce inflammation? Well, losing excess weight via exercise (or eating better) is a great way to lower inflammation. Working out, however, can lower inflammation even if you don’t drop one single pound. Even brisk walking lowers levels of the key inflammation markers.
Including Yoga adds an extra benefit - A 2010 study in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine found that women who had regularly practiced 75 to 90 minutes of Hatha yoga twice-weekly for at least two years had markedly lower levels of interleukin-6 and C-reactive protein (CRP), two key inflammatory markers, compared to those who were new to yoga or practiced less frequently.
Drink Green Tea - I love coffee, but green tea is simply better than coffee. Green tea is full of potent antioxidants that help quell inflammation. In fact, researchers from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock recently found that green tea can inhibit oxidative stress and the potential inflammation that may result from it. This is one of the reasons I offer my clients a cup of tea before each massage.