Although it is double the size of the circulatory system, most people don’t know much about the lymphatic system and may have never heard of it. There is so much great info out there on how it works, so I won’t go into detail. If you are interested, check out the links I’ve shared this month on Facebook and Twitter to learn more (#LymphTips).
Essentially, the lymphatic (or ‘lymph’ for short) system is your body’s sewer system. With all the filtering and cleaning it has to do in your body, the last thing you want is a toxic, clogged up, overflowing sewer! The lymph system needs flow smoothly and efficiently to keep you in great health.
Signs of Poor Lymphatic Function
- Long-lasting sock marks and swollen ankles/feet
- Chronic muscle aches and pains
- Frequent infections and swollen glands
- On-going sinus congestion
- Breast tenderness
- Chronic productive cough
- Varicose veins and/or hemorrhoids
- Skin conditions
One aspect of the lymph system not widely discussed in the wealth of online literature is how to care for it, or better yet, caring for it naturally! I want to share some tips with you on how to promote a healthy lymph system.
Love Your Lymph
1. Eat fresh, raw fruits, vegetables and sprouts: These foods contain enzymes. Enzymes assist the lymphatic system in breaking down cellular debris into fluid that can flow more smoothly. Processed food is dead and lacks enzymes! Go for raw when possible (or lightly steamed).
2. Dry skin brushing: Super easy once it’s a habit, dry skin brushing promotes lymph flow and drainage, taking all of 60 seconds pre-shower. Just try it for a week and see how you feel. Your lymph (immune, skin, circulatory and nervous systems!) will thank you.
3. Exercise: no natural health tip list is ever complete without the mention of physical activity. I’ve said it many times, and I’ll say it again: “If there ever was a magic bullet in medicine, it’s exercise prescription!” – you can quote me on this =) The health benefits are endless and also include improved function of your lymph system.
4. Drink adequate clean water: To keep the sewage flowing through the pipes, you need to maintain fluid levels. As a rule of thumb, drink ½ your weight in fluid ounces per day. Consider making herbal tea a part of your daily fluid intake, especially dandelion root, which is known for its purifying properties.
5. Consume healthy oils: Coconut, olive, flax and more…these oils will help the efficient flow of the lymph fluid. Unhealthy oils like trans fats, found in processed and fried foods, impair lymphatic circulation and cause damage. Use healthy fats in your food everyday , ideally raw. Click here for a delicious healthy oil-containing recipe.
To receive blog posts delivered to your inbox, subscribe here: