This was written by Stevie Duren, owner of Bliss Bodyworks
I’ve been a massage therapist and energy worker for 17 years now. I’ve fielded a lot of questions in those years, and this one never seems to come up. I guess I’ve figured it’s pretty much common sense, but then, that assumption has been known to backfire. I’m going to give you my take on what to eat for an optimal massage experience, give some whys and recipes, and offer insight into what is best for an energy session, as there are differences in what bodies need, post-massage, versus post-energy work. Here we go.
It’s best to eat something light an hour or two prior to your massage. You don’t want to come into your session starving, but you definitely don’t want to be full. You can think of your massage treatment like a work out: after all, a massage is a work out for musculature. A therapist manipulating muscle tissue in a deep tissue massage is pretty close to you working them out in the gym. There is a lot of research that supports this, particularly in the arena of people with paralysis maintaining muscle mass with regular massage and minimizing atrophy…but this is fodder for another blog post! You can use the same rational for pre-massage nourishment as you would pre-workout — something light, clean, and a little protein. Consider some fresh fruit, a handful of nuts, or a salad with kale and seaweed. My PSA for today: of course you always want to go organic.
Post massage, you want to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. It’s crucial to drink plenty of water to rehydrate tissue and flush out the “stuff” released during the massage. Post-massage fare high in nutrients and minerals is ideal. Think more fresh fruits and vegetables, steamed vegetables (the more colors, the better), even lightly stir-fried vegetable medley with some brown rice, or a baked sweet potato is super. You could even do a little meat, like some grilled chicken on a salad. You’re looking to replenish the mineral stores and provide a bit of protein support via vegetables or a bit of meat.
I’m a pretty big fan of juicing for health. it’s one of the best ways to pack a big nutritional punch in a comparatively small serving. In juice form, the nutrition is more bioavailable, so there’s that.I love this juice because it is really refreshing and tasty! It is super hydrating, thanks to the cucumber. The celery helps replace electrolytes, it is chock full of minerals, and did I mention refreshing?!
On the other side of the coin, I would avoid processed foods, sugar, dairy, or carb-laiden foods.
When receiving an energy treatment your body has different needs. Again, it’s important to be well-hydrated, but energy work can deplete your protein stores. I recommend having some nuts or peanut butter an hour or so before your energy session. After your energy session, especially if you are feeling a little “floopy” or “out there,” I recommend eating a piece of chocolate. As it turns out, you can learn some applicable real life lessons from Harry Potter!