Integrative Health Blog

What to Expect From Reflexology

Posted by Marie Hall on Thu, Mar 09, 2017

massage_reflexology1Dollarphotoclub_86049211.jpgIn a word, expect to feel relaxed. There is significant evidence that reflexology promotes relaxation, and when we are relaxed, we can better cope with the daily stresses of life.

Reflexology is an intense massage to your hands or feet that stimulates your internal organs or other area of the body. It is thought that various reflex points on the hands and feet correspond to organs in the body, or other body parts.  This technique allows the practitioner to determine which areas may have sensitivities or blockages. Reflexology targets those areas to help release toxins, which results in reduced stress and tension. Reflexology is one of the most commonly used alternative therapies in the United Kingdom, and can be used as adjunctive therapy or on its own.

How does reflexology work?

One theory is that reflexology helps to restore the body to balance in a natural way. A commonly held belief is that reflexology helps to increase endorphins, which results in increased feelings of wellbeing and relaxation.  Another theory is that reflexology stimulates the corresponding body part and may improve blood flow to that area. The reflex points on the feet may enhance the nerve connection to the corresponding body part, and help to calm the autonomic nervous system.

Who can benefit from reflexology?

Many people are looking for holistic approaches to improve quality of life or wellbeing, or a natural and effective way to relieve stress.

A study from the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health suggests "the potential benefit of reflexology as supportive care for physical and emotional symptoms among patients with cancer." ¹ It was shown to be safe and contribute to improvements in physical function, dyspenea (shortness of breath) and fatigue. It may also be helpful for those with chronic illness or pain, though it does not treat or cure illness.

Other areas that have shown benefit from reflexology include:

achy hands and feet: symptoms of computer overuse e.g. carpal tunnel

detoxification: reduces the toxin load in the body from chemicals or heavy metals

digestion, constipation and/or yeast overload: may improve symptoms

stress: calms the nervous system

autism: reflexology helps relax the nervous system and may help calm children

reproductive issues: may improve blood flow to the sex organs

headaches: helps relieve head tension

circulation: may improve circulation

To receive the maximum benefits of reflexology, particularly for detoxification, it is recommended that the client combine it with other therapies for detoxification such as the footbath, infrared sauna, or oxygen steam cabinet. These different modalities allow for the toxins stimulated by reflexology massage to leave the body through a painless and relaxing way.

And if you are already relaxed, why not enjoy it as long as you can?

If you would like to schedule please contact Marie Hall  202-237-7000 ext. 138

Gwen Wyatt, Alla Sikorskii, Mohammad Hossein Rahbar, David Victorson, Mei You
Oncol Nurs Forum.
Published in final edited form as: Oncol Nurs Forum. 2012 Nov; 39(6): 568–577. doi: 10.1188/12.ONF.568-577. accessed Feb. 28, 2017


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K.Marie Hall is a holistic practitioner at National Integrated Health Associates and certified reflexologist. She often combines reflexology with other rejuvenation and detoxification treatments for the benefit of the client.


Topics: detoxification, reflexology