In 2020, around 1.8 million people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with cancer, with common cancers including breast, lung, prostate and colon cancer. Over the past two decades, plenty of research has been dedicated to finding ‘alternative’ or ‘natural’ complementary therapies to ease the symptoms associated with cancer.
Today, holistic activities such as yoga and meditation play an important role in everything cancer recovery, since they have a powerful ability to battle stress, reduce fatigue and lift the mood. Reflexology—a type of massage that involves the application of pressure to areas on the feet (or hands), is a known stress buster, but studies show that it can also help those who are battling cancer.
Reflexology Can Ease Cancer Symptoms
A study undertaken by academics at Michigan State University found that reflexology can be a useful aid in helping cancer patients manage their symptoms and carry out their everyday tasks. This was the first large-scale study of its kind; before it, reflexology was thought of simply as a soothing, pleasant experience.
The study, which involved 385 women undergoing chemotherapy or hormonal therapy for advanced breast cancer, showed that those who underwent reflexology treatments had less shortness of breath, which enhanced their ability to do things like climb stairs, get dressed or go shopping.
As stated by specialists in reflexology from Foot Palace (yourfootpalace.com), this treatment can also immerse people in tranquility, melting stress, aches and pains away as the body is restored to a greater sense of balance.
Reflexology And Stress
Reflexology can form part of a multifaceted way to battle fear of cancer treatment. Research undertaken by The Christie NHS Foundation Trust in the UK found that reflexology, when part of a ‘rapid stress management technique’ program, can help cancer patients reduce stress. In the study, participants typically practiced two quick stress management techniques such as reflexology, mindfulness and self-hypnosis. The patients reported that these complementary therapies helped reduce negative feelings such as fear of fatigue and loneliness.
If you already enjoy reflexology therapy but you regularly face high levels of stress, consider adopting additional techniques such as controlled breathing, squeezing and releasing stress balls, spending time in nature, or progressive muscle relaxation.
Cobblestone Walking Is Related To Reflexology
If you want to enjoy a taste of reflexology prior to experiencing ‘the real thing’, try walking over smooth cobblestones or a cobblestone mat. Scientists at the Oregon Research Institute have found that this practice has similar benefits to those of reflexology, since it improves balance and physical performance and lowers blood pressure in older adults. This can aid patients recovering from cancer, since issues such as mobility and balance can be exacerbated in older patients with this disease.
The ancient healing art of reflexology has been found to help reduce some cancer symptoms – including tiredness. Those who receive this unique foot/hand massage often find that they can carry out daily tasks with more energy and that they enjoy a greater sense of calm. If you are recovering from cancer, reflexology – alongside meditation, yoga, and/or other stress calming techniques – can help you feel more positive and energetic, and even improve your mood.