Five Reasons to Hydrate Following Massage

Thirsty Yet?

We’ve all heard that hydrating after a massage is important, but why?

We’ll explore five reasons why it’s important to drink that tiny cup of water and more water after a massage.

TL/TR – watch a short video instead.

Flush Out Metabolic Wastes

Help your body flush out metabolic wastes

A common goal in massage is to release muscle knots that generally cause pain and lack of motion. These knots commonly constrict nerves, lymphatic, and blood flow. As the knots get released, metabolic waste products like salts, phosphates, nitrogenous compounds, and even viruses can be released into the muscles tissue. This makes the job of the therapist to use proper techniques to get those wastes flushed into our lymphatic and circulatory systems important. These systems require water to carry out waste products, so with just as much importance comes the job of rehydrating with 2-3 eight-ounce glasses of water following massage. It also helps having a glass beforehand as well. Without water, the waste products can become stagnate in our muscles and cause increased soreness and possibly illness.

Rehydrate your Muscles

Rehydrate your muscles

Our muscle tissue is nearly 80% water, making water crucial for proper muscular function. During massage, deep tissue especially, your muscles can quite literally have the water squeezed out of them. As necessary as the deep tissue work may be to get the knots out, rehydrating your muscle tissue so it can function properly and allow your body to carry out the processes above is of equal importance.

Stimulate Metabolism

Stimulate your metabolism

Metabolism is the process of our bodies turning the food and liquid we consume into energy. Our metabolism slows at rest, so being mostly sedentary on a massage table for a given amount of time is by no means speeding it up. This can lead to a situation where a person can feel “massage drunk”, or disoriented following massage. The body is trying to metabolically process everything that just occurred, which takes time. One way to speed the process is by drinking water to stimulate your metabolism.

Keep in mind that the lower the water temperature is, the higher the energy required for your body to metabolize will be. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism revealed that within 10 minutes of drinking 17oz of water, caloric burn rate in both men and women jumped 30% higher than normal. This effect reached its peak 30-40 minutes after drinking and lasted over an hour. So, if your energy levels are feeling low, perhaps opt for a cool room temp drink of water instead of something ice cold.

Reduce Headaches

Reduce symptoms of headaches

Hopefully, it is already clear how important it is to drink water. Yet another way water can help is by eliminating dehydration caused headaches. Our brains sit in our skulls with roughly 73% water content. If this percentage drops, our brains can temporarily shrink from fluid loss. This mechanism causes the brain to pull away from the skull and in turn produce a dehydration headache.

Improve Overall Health

Improve overall health

No statement highlights the importance of water more than a human being can only survive without water for roughly 3 days. Water is crucial for our life and health. If you start listing our body’s systems such as the muscular system, respiratory system, nervous system, circulatory system, lymphatic system, and so on–all of them require water to function. Furthermore, they all work together. Drinking water will not only ensure that your body’s systems are able to function, but will also affect how you look, feel, and the decisions you make.

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