How To Detox Your Lymphatic System |

How To Detox Your Lymphatic System

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Vital for digestion and fighting diseases, somehow the lymphatic system is one of the most overlooked body parts. From what it is and how it works, to keeping it healthy, here’s everything you should know...

What exactly is the lymphatic system?

Along with your liver, your body uses the lymphatic system to remove toxins, waste and unwanted material. Part of the immune system, it’s a network of vessels, nodes and tissues that cleanses nearly every cell in your body.​

How exactly does it work?

It tackles toxins that come into the body from both external means (from food, air, beauty products and even water) as well as internal ones (damaged proteins and metabolic waste). Once toxins enter the bloodstream, they are purified through the largest lymphatic tissue in the body, the spleen. The spleen is our main immune defence, fighting infection, holding a reserve of red and white blood cells and destroying worn-out red blood cells in the body.

Why do we need to detox it?

We have twice as much lymph fluid (the fluid that carries toxins) as blood but, unlike blood, lymph does not have a pump. Instead it relies on the relaxation and contraction of our muscles and joints to move it. This explains why the lymphatic system can easily become stagnant, especially when it becomes overwhelmed with toxic debris.

On a Similar Note

What are the signs of a sluggish lymphatic system?

Symptoms of lymphatic congestion can be anything from puffy skin and cellulite to brain fog, cold hands and feet, acne and blemishes, chronic headaches or migraines and soreness and achiness in the mornings. If your lymph is sluggish, you’re also more prone to obesity, according to research. And if you’re constantly coming down with throat infections, colds, tonsillitis or ear infections, this too could be a sign of a sluggish lymph.

What can we do to boost our lymphatic system?

The good news is, keeping the lymph moving doesn’t take much – even something as simple as drinking more water and breathing deeply can make a difference. Here are our top tips...

Look To Your Diet: The more nutrient-dense your diet and the less chemicals entering your body, the better your lymphatic system can work. Foods that put stress on the body include common allergens (such as dairy, gluten, soy, shellfish or nightshades, such as aubergine), low-quality animal products, refined oils and processed foods. Be sure to include plenty of anti-inflammatory foods such as cruciferous veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage), foods rich in omega-3s, berries, nuts and seeds and herbs and spices such as turmeric and ginger.

Try An Infrared Sauna: Don’t overlook the humble sauna – by heating your body from the inside out, an infrared sauna will ensure toxins are removed from the tissue via sweat. It can also improve blood flow and help with tissue healing, which is critical for lymphatic health.

Start Body Brushing: The coarse bristles of a dry brush encourage movement of the lymph and blood in the underlying tissues, which helps to move built-up toxins. Body brush daily before a shower, working toward the heart.

Breathe Deeply: With no organ to pump the lymph system, deep breathing is essential to get it moving. Make an effort to check in with your breath throughout the day.

Stay Active: Any type of regular exercise and movement – such as simply walking more – is good for keeping lymph fluid flowing, but yoga (which twists the body and helps fluid drain), HIIT training and rebounding (jumping on a trampoline) are particularly beneficial.

Get Foam Rolling: A form of self-massage, a ten-minute foam rolling session can work wonders to break up muscle and tissue adhesions that cause tightness and injuries, as well as increase blood flow to the muscles and trigger lymphatic drainage. For a pampering treat, book in for a lymphatic drainage massage – studies show a deep massage can push up to 78% of stagnant lymph back into circulation.

Stay Hydrated: Lymph fluid is about 95% water and becomes thicker when you’re dehydrated. Sip water throughout the day and avoid sugar-laden soft drinks, processed juices, sports drinks and alcohol.


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