What is the lymphatic system and why is it important?

  • The lymphatic system is a drainage network that extends throughout the entire body and serves as a way of dealing with and removing infections, toxins, and waste from tissues and organs.   
  • Lymph is a major part of the immune system. It removes microbes and toxins from the brain, muscles, and other tissues. It destroys and deactivates the drained matter so it is safe before emptying it into the bloodstream for further detox by especially the liver, kidneys, and spleen.  
  • The lymphatic fluid that circulates throughout the lymphatic system, known just as lymph, also consists of white blood cells that attack infections.  
  • The function of the lymphatic system is very important in the maintenance of detoxification, drainage, and immune system function for the whole body.     

 

How to move your lymph:

 

Rebounding

Rebounding is jumping or bouncing on a trampoline. Rebounding is one of the most effective ways to move your lymph. If you’ve got low energy or any musculoskeletal issues, you don’t have to jump high. Just bounding on your toes for a few minutes will get the lymph fluid moving. And you don’t even really need the trampoline; you can simply bounce on the floor.

 

Lymph Massage

You can do an easy massage at home since it’s not possible for most of us to visit a trained professional. If you’re short on time, focus on the lymph nodes around your neck and head as seen in this video.

 

Dry Brushing

You can buy a natural bristled skin brush for dry brushing at some health food stores and many online stores. Typically, they come with an instructional card to show you how to do it. It’s an easy and quick way to move your lymphatic fluid while also exfoliating your skin and opening your pores. 

 

Hot/cold therapy

Scandinavian cultures have been using a combination of saunas and snow as hot/cold therapy for thousands of years. They spend time in a hot sauna, working up a sweat, then exit the sauna and jump in the snow or a cold pond. This is known to increase longevity and the movement of lymph is one reason why. If you don’t have access to a sauna or a pile of snow, you can easily do this in the shower. Start with warm to hot water, whatever you can stand, and stay under that temperature for 3 minutes. Then turn the faucet to get cold water, as cold as you can manage and stay under the cold water for 1 minute. Repeat this cycle 3 times. This works by dilating then constricting the lymph vessels, forcing the lymph fluid to move throughout your body. 

 

Drink plenty of water

Making sure you are well hydrated is key to feeling good but also for lymph health. Since lymph is fluid, you’ve got to keep yourself well hydrated to dilute the lymphatic fluid and help it remove toxins. 

 

Wear loose clothing

Clothing can be very restricted. Avoid wearing clothing that is too tight, especially in areas where lymph nodes are concentrated like the groin, armpits, and neck. For women, avoid wearing bras with underwire so the nodes around the breast can be flushed appropriately.