A lot of massage therapists seem to believe that massage releases toxins and those toxins are then flushed into the bloodstream and then somehow “washed away” by drinking water following the massage.
We have all been told after a massage or for us therapists, in school, that drinking water after a massage will help to flush out the toxins that are released during treatment.
It does kind of make sense until you really think deeply about it and then like many of us, you’re left wondering: what toxins are flushed from my system? How are these toxins “flushed” by the massage? Where is the evidence is to support such a claim?
Well, as a therapist and a consumer, I started digging and seriously could not find a shred of real evidence to support that a massage would in anyway release toxins.
So in my opinion, it is, NOT true. I do however, purely to be polite and pleasant offer my clients bottled water after their massage and it has nothing to do with anything more than encouraging hydration.
What is a Toxin?
Toxins are a poison of plant or animal origin that produces an immune response.
Caffeine? Nicotine? Aspartame? Preservatives in our food? Chemical fumes? Medications? Chemo therapy chemicals? Is lactic acid considered a toxin, even though it occurs naturally in the body?
Drinking a cup of artificially sweetened coffee, eating a meal full of processed and preservative infused foods, smoking a cigarette and then expecting an hour on a massage table to rid the body of these toxins, is a completely unrealistic expectation.
Massage is recommended treatment for muscle tightness, pain, stress, mobility issues, injuries or for relaxation. Massage is not a prescription for ridding the body of toxins.
The human body naturally rids itself of “toxins” through its metabolic systems, excreting them through the liver, kidneys and digestive system via sweat, urine, feces and even vomit (when you’re sick). A massage does not make these systems perform any differently or more efficiently than normal and there is no scientific evidence proving that a massage affects toxin release in the body.
So go ahead and enjoy the massage followed a complimentary bottle of water because there are definitely benefits to both: