Swedish massage therapy is the best-known type of bodywork performed today. Its primary is to relax the entire body, but Swedish massage therapy goes beyond relaxation. It is exceptionally beneficial for increasing the level of oxygen in the blood, decreasing muscle toxins, improving circulation and flexibility while easing tension.
A study conducted by the National Centre for Complementary and Alternative Medicine in the US, and published in The New York Times, found that volunteers who received a 45-minute Swedish massage experienced significant decreases in levels of the stress hormone cortisol, as well as arginine vasopressin-a hormone that can lead to increases in cortisol. Volunteers also had increases in the number of lymphocytes, white blood cells that are part of the immune system, and a boost in the immune cells that may help fight colds and the flu.