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Love Your Lymphs

The lymphatic system is largely ignored unless something goes wrong within the body.

Hippocrates (460–377 BC) first described the lymphatic vessel as “white blood” and coined the term “chyle” from the Greek chylos, meaning juice. Chyle is a milky tissue fluid consisting of emulsified fats and free fatty acids, collectively called lymph, which is formed in the digestive system and taken up by the specialized lymph vessels known as lacteals.The cardiovascular system is intricately tied to the lymphatic system.

Role of the Lymphatic System
  • The lymphatic system aids the immune system in removing and destroying waste, debris, dead blood cells, pathogens, toxins, and cancer cells.
  • The lymphatic system absorbs fats and fat-soluble vitamins from the digestive system and delivers these nutrients to the cells of the body where they are used by the cells.
  • The lymphatic system also removes excess fluid, and waste products from the interstitial spaces between the cells.
Here is an excellent video explaining the role of the lymphatic system:


Natural Ways to Support the Lymphatic System

The number one way to get lymph moving is for YOU TO MOVE!

Rebounder and exercise

Rebounding’s alternating weightlessness and double gravity produce a pumping action that pulls out waste products from the cells and forces into them oxygen and nutrition from the bloodstream.
The movement performed in rebounding provides the stimulus for a free-flowing system that drains away these potential poisons.

Unlike the arterial system, the lymphatic system does not have its own pump. It has no heart muscle to move the fluid around through its lymph vessels. There are just three ways to activate the flow of lymph away from the tissues it serves and back into the main pulmonary circulation. Lymphatic flow requires muscular contraction from exercise and movement, gravitational pressure, and internal massage to the valves of lymph ducts. Rebounding supplies all three methods of removing waste products from the cells and from the body.

Foods That Promote Lymph Flow
  • Fruits, especially cranberries that help the lymphatic system, bowels and kidneys to get rid of various kinds of harmful toxins, are loaded with antioxidants and many other nutrients.
  • Leafy greens–
  • Freshly ground flaxseed
  • Spirulina
  • Chia seeds
  • Avocados
  • Nuts, not peanuts which are really a legume

Drink Plenty Of Water

Your body needs water to stay hydrated to keep your lymph fluid flowing properly. Drink half your body weight in ounces minimum of decaffeinated filtered water.

Dry Brushing

Dry brushing on a daily basis improves lymph flow and gives your whole lymphatic system a boost to kick into action. Before you jump in the shower, dry brush your skin with long strokes towards your heart for about 5 minutes. A Step-By-Step Guide To Dry Skin Brushing

Go Natural on Your Beauty and Skincare Products

As I have written in my previous posts your skin absorbs on average 64% of everything it is exposed to. Choose for natural, organic beauty products or try to make your own chemical-free versions.

Herbal Teas and Herbs

Herbs can be used as a powerful medicine. Some herbs may help you to boost lymph flow and eliminate toxins. Those include red clover, Chickweed, Cleavers, Calendula, Red Clover, Plantain, Make sure to contact an herbalist for advice if you are on medication and avoid those herbal teas when pregnant or lactating.

Here is a simple tea that can stimulate lymphatic flow:
Cleavers – this herb stimulates the activity of the lymphatic system and organs so they can perform at their best. It helps in cases of lymphatic congestion and swollen lymph glands, and it also helps to cleanse and nourish the blood.
Mullein – this herb treats lymph congestion. The leaves and flowers activate lymph circulation and can be useful for swollen glands, especially when lymph nodes in the throat, neck, arms, and groin swell or are congested.
 
Lymph Cleansing Herbal Infusion Recipe
3 parts cleavers
1 part mullein
Place the herbs in a small saucepan and cover with cold water. Heat slowly and simmer, covered for 20 minutes. The longer you simmer the herbs, the stronger the tea will be. Drink 2-3 cups a day for 2 to 3 weeks.
 
Wear Loose Clothing

Tight clothing slows down lymph flow and can cause blockages. So make sure to wear lose clothing or clothing that fits properly. It is a good idea to allow lymphatic flow to breast tissue by removing your bra as much as possible.

References
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3312397/
http://www.lymphnotes.com/article.php/id/151/
https://www.wellbeingjournal.com/rebounding-good-for-the-lymph-system/
http://lifespa.com/the-miracle-of-lymph/
http://www.healthyandnaturalworld.com/natural-ways-to-cleanse-your-lymphatic-system/
https://southernherbalist.wordpress.com/2015/03/30/lymphatic-system-and-herbal-allies/


This article is for educational purposes only and is not meant to diagnose or treat medical conditions. Consult with your primary provider for your healthcare needs.



Guest Blog Post by Brooke Lounsbury RN
  Brooke Lounsbury, Registered Nurse, has over 23 years in the medical field. Her primary field was in Home Health and Hospice until she left the mainstream medical field in 2008 and started Health Begins at Home, a website devoted to helping people empower themselves through education, public speaking engagements, classes and coaching -online and in person. She holds twice a year 10 day detoxification events, both online and in person. She also gives talks on seasonal affective disorder, thyroid health and stress management skills. She is a member of American Holistic Nurse Association, (AHNA) and is currently completing her functional medicine certification. Brooke has an avid interest in the functional medicine medical model, which addresses the underlying causes of disease, using a systems-oriented approach and engaging both patient and practitioner in a therapeutic partnership. She incorporates stress reduction techniques, diet, exercise and supplements in her practice as a holistic approach to attaining and maintaining health. 

Brooke has written 3 online continuing education courses for Pedagogy, to learn more about each course click on the course title:

Hashimotos Thyroiditis From A Western Medicine And Holistic Perspective

Thyroid Gland; An Overview

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Posted: 3/1/2016 1:45:10 PM
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