Staying in Touch®
Hello, and welcome to the July 2022 newsletter! Enjoying your summer? Whatever your plans this summer, be sure to devote some time to relaxing your body and your mind. Your overall health sets the tone for your quality of life.
This month’s issue covers massage and arthritis. This is a health concern that increases as we age. Here are some statistics on arthritis:
Prevalence by Age
From 2013 to 2015 in the US:
Of people aged 45 to 64 years, 29.3% ever reported doctor-diagnosed arthritis.
Of people aged 65 years or older, 49.6% ever reported doctor-diagnosed arthritis.
The risk of arthritis increases with age and arthritis is more common among women than men.
As you can see, arthritis is something many of us will deal with as we age, so it’s good to know that massage can help.
Want to live a longer, healthier life? The second article sheds light on what might help you to do just that.
Do you have other questions on how massage can help you? Be sure to ask at your next appointment; see you then!
Does massage help arthritis?
By Meg Walters
Living with constant joint pain may have you wondering—does massage help arthritis? Arthritis can be a frustrating and painful condition. Its main symptoms are chronic joint pain and stiffness, which can make daily movement difficult and uncomfortable.
There are two types of arthritis: osteoarthritis, which results in the breakdown of the cartilage that protects the joints, and rheumatoid arthritis, in which the immune system mistakenly targets the lining of the joints. Both types of arthritis can lead to inflammation and pain in the joints. While massage can't completely resolve this type of joint pain, it can help to ease symptoms of both types of arthritis.
"Massage can help to relieve pain from arthritis and improve joint mobility," says Jonathan Wills, Director of Operations and Licensed Massage Therapist at The Woodhouse Day Spa. “As The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases states, massage can help to decrease arthritis pain and improve flexibility in the muscles, joints and tendons.”
Countless studies have shown that massage can be an effective temporary treatment for people with both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. It can help to improve pain, reduce stiffness and make completing daily tasks easier.
One 2017 study found that the majority of people with osteoarthritis of the knee had an improved quality of life and greater joint mobility after receiving Swedish massage. A 2018 study also found that bi-weekly massages significantly improved pain, stiffness and function in people with osteoarthritis.
How does massage help arthritis?
So, how exactly does massage help with the symptoms of arthritis? The science is unclear.
"We know that massage reduces anxiety quite well and can reduce certain painful conditions rather well, but we don’t know how those things are happening,” says Christopher Moyer, PhD, a psychologist at the University of Wisconsin in Stout. Research also indicates that massage helps the body to relax by reducing stress levels—so, massage may not actually directly help with joint pain.
“The actual mechanism that comes into play is still under investigation," said Rosemary Chunco, a licensed massage therapist. "For example, a more restful sleep that results from a massage may help with arthritis pain.”
As people with the condition will know, rheumatoid arthritis inflammation, or ‘flare-ups’ can be triggered by a range of factors. Many experts believe that massage not only helps to tackle pain, but also helps to reduce the frequency of flare-ups by reducing stress. ...
‘Landmark study’ shows eating only during daytime could add years to your life
Eating primarily during the day instead of at night could be the key to a longer life, new research reveals. Researchers from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center say it’s not just what you consume, but when.
Their study finds that cutting down on fatty and sugary foods and having meals at the right time increased the longevity of mice by 35 percent. Experiments found the body clock’s daily rhythms play a big part in the benefits of a healthy diet. Rodents are nocturnal animals that are most active in the dark. Meanwhile, humans are generally livelier during the day. With that in mind, study authors say people should restrict their dining to the most active hours of the day.
In lab animals tracked over four years, a reduced-calorie diet alone extended survival by 10 percent. However, the improvement increased significantly with an exclusive nighttime feeding schedule. The combination tacked on an extra nine months to their typical two-year average lifespan.
Lead author Professor Joseph Takahashi says a similar plan for people would restrict eating to the daytime hours. Eating less is known to boost health. Studies on a variety of animals have shown it can lead to a longer, healthier life. The latest findings add to the evidence that having a hearty breakfast or lunch instead of dinner is also key—at least for humans.
Does intermittent fasting really work? Prof. Takahashi, a molecular biologist, adds that their research helps untangle the controversy surrounding diet plans that emphasize eating only at certain times of day — which many people refer to as intermittent fasting. Although these plans may not speed weight loss in humans — according to a recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine — they can lead to other health benefits which increase the average lifespan. Prof. Takahashi and his colleagues have unraveled the effects of calories, fasting, and circadian rhythms on longevity. ...
The results suggest time-restricted eating has positive effects on the body even if it doesn’t promote weight loss. The study found no differences in body weight among mice on different eating schedules. “However, we found profound differences in lifespan,” Prof. Takahashi notes in a media release. ...
But what is happiness except the simple
harmony between a man and the life he leads?
— Albert Camus
The content of this article is not designed to replace professional medical advice.
If you’re ill, consult a physician.
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