Busta’s Person of the Week: A massage is not a luxury but a necessity, so listen to what your body is telling you

Busta’s Person of the Week: A massage is not a luxury but a necessity, so listen to  what your body is telling you
April 26
10:27 2023

By Busta Brown

I’m a type 2 diabetic and so many of us are suffering from this disease. I’m always looking for new ways to control it and to help us all remain as healthy as possible. I recently found out that massage therapy is extremely good for diabetics, not only for our physical health, but for our mental health as well. So, I reached out to a licensed massage therapist, Angela Alston, to learn more.

“A massage is for everyone. Some people see it as a luxury, but I wish more people would see it as a necessity. It’s part of your healthcare. It’s especially good for diabetics and high blood pressure, because it helps the blood flow through your body. A massage helps stimulate the blood flow to important areas of the body.” said Angela Alston. 

After getting a massage, I do feel like I have a new body. My mind feels more relaxed as well. Angela was spot on. When your blood is flowing properly, the mind and body flow properly as well. 

Angela is a licensed massage therapist and the owner and CEO of Empath Wellness. The Winston-Salem native is a testimony to how massage therapy is good for a broken heart as well. In 2011, she lost her husband to pancreatic cancer and then two years later in 2013, her oldest daughter passed away due to necrotizing fasciitis. 

“When my heart is heavy, massage therapy helps me release and feel relieved. A weight is lifted and I feel renewed. I remember that joy comes and knowing that keeps me going. That’s why I love what I do, because I know the results,” shared Angela.

I asked Angela where the most common areas people get the most tension in their body. “The neck and shoulder areas,” she explained. “So, I focus on the upper traps which are the top of your shoulders where your neck comes down. Also, behind your neck there are smaller muscles called rhomboids that cause a lot of tension and pain, and I focus on that area as well.”  

She added how important it is to tell your massage therapist if you’re taking meds or have a medical condition. “One day a client came in for a massage and she wasn’t in pain in a particular area. When I touched it, she noticed, Oh! She didn’t mention she had taken pain meds before coming in and they wore off. It worked out, because the massage helped relieve the pain. 

“But there are some medical conditions when a massage will do more harm than good. A pregnant woman comes to me for a massage, it depends on what trimester (she is in). I wouldn’t touch their Achilles, or heels, because that could cause some serious problems.”

I asked Angela to share some of her techniques that work wonders. “It’s a hold that I do in the back of your neck, at the base of your skull. It’s a small muscle there and when I apply light pressure while I’m holding your head in my hand, that releases a lot of tension in the head, neck and shoulders. It gives you a very pleasurable feeling and afterward you’ll feel light as a feather,” shared Angela. She doesn’t recommend we try this at home because it does take some serious training. 

“You must attend a school with a massage therapy program ,,, over 800 hours. After school you have to take a certification (exam) to receive your license. It’s a lot of training and knowledge about the mind and body. You must learn to massage the whole body properly and safely. You must be licensed to practice massage therapy in North Carolina.”

I asked why myself and others sometimes feel pain after a massage. “Sometimes it’s the side effects of getting a massage. After a day or so, you should be fine. I’ve heard the saying, ‘no pain, no gain.’ I don’t believe in that. I make sure my clients leave feeling amazing.” 

She said we should get a massage at least once a month. “But listen to your body, because it will tell you when it’s time. “ 

Angela mentioned earlier that it helps her with stress or a heavy heart after losing her husband and daughter. I asked how massage therapy is connected to our mental health. “The manipulation and stimulation of the muscles help to release dopamine and serotonin, which help to improve our moods. We can’t operate at our best when we don’t feel good both mentally and physically. A massage will definitely improve that.” 

I asked what the greatest challenge in her profession is. “The stigma linked to sex. People tend to think because you’re a massage therapist, that you also do other things. That’s not true,”  said Angela. 

Here’s a few testimonials about the great work Empath Wellness does: 

“The massage was fantastic and I will definitely add it as part of my routine!”

 “Angela is fabulous!” 

“Not only a great massage, but I was appreciative that Angela heard and addressed my special concerns.” 

My phenomenal Person of the Week is Angela Alston. “Don’t become weary in your well doing, because when you sow good seeds, you’re going to reap.” 

For more info visit, email Angela at, or call 336-955-0299.

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