Several recent studies have demonstrated the efficacy of Swedish and
deep tissue massage in reducing the symptoms of anorexia nervosa.
The only studies online to detail the massage techniques tested are as
1) "...the women in the massage-therapy group received a 30-minute
Swedish massage twice a week for five weeks. Beginning in the supine
position, the head and neck were massaged, followed by the arms,
torso, legs and feet. In the prone position, the legs and back were
massaged." Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment and Prevention,
2001, Vol. 9, pp. 217-228.
2) "The massage therapy group received a massage 2 days a week for 5
weeks, for a total of 10 massages. The massages were administered by
massage therapists. The massage therapy covered several parts of the
body (which was fully clothed) and included 15 minutes in a supine
position and 15 minutes in a prone position. It consisted of exerting
traction upon the neck with the patient in a supine position, followed
by smooth strokes across the forehead, jaw, and face, and depressing
the shoulders. The therapist then exerted traction on each arm,
followed by massage of the hand and smooth strokes over the length of
the arm. The torso was gently rocked. The same movements used with the
arms and hands were applied to legs and feet. In a prone position, the
Achilles tendon was stretched and long strokes were made from the hip
to the toes. Also included were lateral lumbar stretching, strokes
from the back to the arms, trapezius and neck squeezing, friction
alongside the spine, sacral traction, and long, soothing strokes from
the head to the feet."
Field, Tiffany; Schanberg, Saul; Kuhn, Cynthia; Field, Tory; Fierro,
Karen; Henteleff, Tanja; Mueller, Cynthia; Yando, Regina; S, Bulimic
adolescents benefit from massage therapy.. Vol. 33, Adolescence,
09-22-1998, pp 555(9).
(Note, this page is only available in the Google cache, as linked.)
This paper details a study into massage treatments for anorexia,
however it is not published online. It should be available from your
local college or university library.
3) Hart, S., Field, T. Hernandez-Reif, M., Nearing, G., Shaw, S.,
Schanberg, S., & Kuhn, C. (2001). Anorexia symptoms are reduced by
massage therapy. Eating Disorders, 9, 289-299.
"Abstract: Women diagnosed with anorexia nervosa were given a massage
twice per week for a month or standard treatment. The massaged women
reported lower stress and anxiety levels and showed lower cortisol
levels immediately following the massage. Over the one-month treatment
period, they also reported decreased body dissatisfaction on the
Eating Disorder Inventory and showed increased dopamine and
norepinephrine levels. Findings suggest that anorexia symptoms are
reduced by massage therapy.
Massage therapy reduced anxiety, depressed mood and salivary cortisol
(stress hormone) levels and resulted in decreased body dissatisfaction
associated with anorexia."
4) This is a case study dealing with an individual's approach to
treating anorexia using deep tissue massage. Few details are given,
but there are contact details for the Touch Research Institute at the
University of Miami School of Medicine.
I hope these references are of use to you. If you are dissatisfied
with my answer, please feel free to request a clarification. Good
lucky with your studies.