Taking a New Look
by Christopher Shirley
isn't surprising that many people
have dismissed reflexology. After
all, there just isn't any obvious
reason why a simple massage of
the feet would have any kind of
important therapeutic benefit.
Sure, we can all agree that it
might be pleasurable - even very
relaxing - but, that is about it,
right? There is absolutely no precedent
for the basic premise of reflexology
that areas of the feet correspond
to other parts of the body, and,
that stimulation of these areas
of the feet therapeutically relaxes
the corresponding parts of the
And yet, advocates of reflexology have made far-reaching claims about reflexology.
Some recipients have their arthritis completely cured, been cured of their
headaches, back aches cleared up, asthma symptoms relieved, sinuses cleared,
have been freed of their P.M.S., ovarian cysts disappeared, stomach ulcer healed – and
on and on.
In the December 1993 issue of the prestigious American Journal of Obstetrics
and Gynaecology a research paper presented by William Flocco and Dr. Terry
Oleson showed reflexology reduced women's P.M.S. symptoms by 46 per cent for
the eight weeks of weekly treatments. This was sustained with 42 per cent reduction
of symptoms for eight weeks after treatment. It was not as effective as drug
treatments. However, reflexology had none of the side effects of drugs. The
conclusion was that reflexology should be considered an effective therapy for
PMS. This is the first scientifically accepted reflexology research study conducted
in North America.
We recently discovered that scientific research of reflexology has been conducted
in other parts of the world. For example, we learned that when compared to
North America there has been a much more receptive attitude to reflexology
in Denmark, with the result that there are approximately 3500 practising Danish
reflexologists’ vis-à-vis 3000 practising medical doctors. Some
of these reflexologists are working in medical settings including hospitals,
and large corporations employ some others for their employees. It is apparent
that these corporations find the resultant reduced sick leave and improved
productivity of their employees’ worthy of employing reflexologists.
Simultaneously, three Danish research studies that report positive results
from reflexology treatment for persons suffering from poor blood circulation,
kidney stones and constipation. Another study indicates that reflexology was
beneficial for women in a number of different circumstances during childbirth.
Research conducted in Australia evaluated reflexology's benefit for person's
suffering from arthritic pain, unexplained internal pain and tension headaches.
The study reported positive results. Similarly, in Switzerland, a research
study evaluated the benefits of reflexology for persons with terminal cancer,
all of whom were suffering from pain. The results showed that reflexology not
only relieved their pain, but also added quality to the dying person's life.
And in China, X.M. Wang of the First Teaching Hospital, Beijing Medical University
published "Treating type II diabetes mellitus with foot reflexotherapy". This
study reports numerous symptoms greatly reduced by reflexotherapy and concludes
that it is an effective therapy for type II diabetes mellitus.
In summation, from around the world, scientific research has shown that reflexology
is an effective therapy for a diverse range of health conditions: P.M.S., kidney
stones, constipation, childbirth, arthritis, internal pain, tension headaches
and the pain suffered by persons with terminal cancer, and, diabetes mellitus
type II. Maybe it is time to take a second look at reflexology and all the
claims that have been made.
It appears that reflexology might be the difference between requiring drugs/surgery,
and helping your body to heal itself. In a preventive sense, it’s the
difference between getting sick and staying healthy.
Reflexology therapeutically reduces stress and tension throughout the whole
body. Blood and lymph circulation improves, nerve supply to the cells is improved,
and the release of toxins from the body is increased. These physiological benefits
facilitate improvement in the body's assimilation of nutrients, elimination
of wastes, and the functions of the immune system.
Reflexology is also a very effective complement to other natural health therapies.
For example, it can facilitate more effective chiropractic adjustments that
hold for longer. Reflexology complements massage and other physical therapies
by reducing stress and tension in the internal glands and organs of the body,
and, by relieving stress from parts of the body that are too painful to be
directly worked on: i.e. whiplash. Reflexology complements nutritional and
herbal therapies and colon therapy by facilitating more efficient assimilation
and elimination in the digestive system.
Luckily, the instructional video "Recreational Reflexology" puts the benefits
of reflexology right at your fingertips. Helene Meurer reviewed this video
in alive Magazine #128. She states that even her four-year-old was able to
follow the instruction and be effective. In short this video takes a person
step-by-step through giving a complete foot reflexology session, allowing you,
your family and friends access to reflexology whenever desired.
syndicated from Pacificreflexology: