Water and the Myths of Massage, can we massage out toxins?

I hope you brought your water pills cause its time to take your medicine!  Oh you’re out? Well you can find more at your local grocery store in the Snake Oil isle. You know the one? The place where everyone can pretend they are treating their illnesses with placebo! Speaking of myths lets jump into one of my industry’s most absurd: drinking water after a massage to flush out toxins.  Massage does not remove toxins from your body and the water you drink after a massage doesn’t help flush out anything that was worked out of your muscles. The water is a courtesy, its welcoming and it quenches your thirst. It feels good to take a delicious, cool drink of water after a magnificent massage. The water has no effect on DOMS, which is that achy, uncomfortable quasi painful sensation after a session or when we exercise.

If you are feeling pain after a massage there are two better remedies than drinking a bottle of water. The first is to communicate more effectively with your massage therapist. If something hurts, tell them. If they are hurting you, tell them. A massage should never hurt. This experience should feel wonderful! If you are twitching or recoiling from their touch this is a bad thing. Your muscles should be inviting them in, not fending them off!

The second way to avoid this pain is by getting a different massage therapist.  A quality massage is one that is safe, ethical and feels wonderful. If your therapist is hurting you they are achieving none of these requirements. Stand up for yourself and demand the quality of service you are paying for. Become your own advocate and create the world you want to live in! Make the most of your moments and find a magnificent massage therapist who actually knows how to give a marvelous massage.

Massage doesn’t flush out toxins

Massage doesn’t flush out toxins, but did you know trying to sweat them out is equally ineffective? Sitting in a sauna, sweating and melting away may create a puddle of skin coolant under you, but it will do nothing to eradicate the supposed “toxins” in your body. We sweat to cool ourselves, not to excrete waste products or clear toxic substances. When we need to clean our inside zones we turn to the real filtration centers: our kidneys and liver. They a do a great job on their own, they don’t need massage, saunas or wraps to get in their way.

These kinds of practices, the methods of removing toxins can be incredibly dangerous especially when taken to the extreme. We have seen this time and again when alternative medicine attacks the vulnerable. Alternative medicine is alternative because it isn’t real medicine. When you don’t give proper care to the  seriously ill, they typically die. We saw this in 2012 when Naima Houder-Mohammed paid Robert O Young, the father of the alkaline diet, $77,000 for treatment, where he infused sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) into her blood stream. She was treated by him for three months, during which her health worsened until she died.

A more relevant experience to massage was when a Quebec woman went to her local spa expecting to sweat her toxins out in a hot wrap, but was instead cooked alive for nine hours until she died of heat exhaustion. [1] Dr. Joe Schwarcz, a professor of chemistry at McGill University in Montreal compared sweating out toxins with someone sitting in a bathtub worrying about drowning. “Removing a dropper-full of water from the tub will theoretically reduce the risk — because the chance of drowning is lower in less water — but getting rid of so little water will be effectively meaningless.” [2]  The same is true for the toxins we sweat from our pores.

 


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