Stress affects not only mental well-being; it has a physiological impact on health as well. Stress may cause sleeplessness, poor appetite, and even high blood pressure. Alleviating stress reduces levels of cortisol, reducing blood pressure.
It improves blood circulation, promoting healing. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to cells and organs and removes toxins. Tense muscles can constrict blood flow. Relaxing these muscles can reverse this, and even improve the immune system (according to the Mayo Clinic).
Massage stimulates the body's secretion of endorphins, neurotransmitters that regulate stress and pain. They create a feeling of well-being and enhance immune response, in addition to alleviating headaches. Studies have shown that massage triggers the secretion of endorphins.