- The lymphatic system is how our body gets rid of toxins, excess fluids and such…our own internal drainage system. When it is clogged or sluggish we gain weigh, retain water, bloat, suffer energy loss, have less healthy looking skin/hair, and increase our chances of inflammation. Why? When the lymphatic system is slowed, sluggish or clogged, it means the drain isn’t working properly so whatever needs to be draining out of our body isn’t or isn’t at the rate it should which results in build-up of cellular toxins and other toxins that can leak and cause inflammation. Inflammation can inturn cause the production of fat cells to increase. In fact, a study at Standford University, revealed that a sluggish Lymphatic system can double fat storage and growth of fat cells. When toxins are;t flushed out of the body this is reflected in more wrinkles, cellulite, dull eyes, bags under the eyes, less energy and thinner hair. So what can we do to get our lymphatic system operating at its optimum level?
- Hydrate – drink clean water, add a little lemon and a pinch of sea salt, drink throughout the day…don’t make the mistake of drinking tons of water a few times a day or at the end of the day, the body needs water all day long to operate properly. Also eat plenty of water rich veggies/fruits (e.g., lettuce, watermelon – organic apples, celery)
Drink hot lemon water first thing in the morning – this gets your lymphatic system flowing, it dialates the lymph vessels and stimulates the flow. (1/2 lemon juiced, 1 cup hot water)
- Limit dairy – it can increase sluggishness
Consider a Juice Cleanse – this will help flush toxins from your body and rejuvinate your overall system (and it helps you start clean eating, having given up unhealthy options)
- Eat plenty of fresh (organic) green vegetables – they increase the healing of the lymph vessels, and aid in detoxification
- Limit processed food, chemical additives (food, cosmetics, shampoo, air freshners)
Eat/Drink Beets (fresh) they have antioxidants that protect and support both the liver and the lymphatic system, so enjoy more beets (you can add them to your juice or smoothy if you aren’t a beet lover).
- Dry Brush – Dry brushing stimulates blood flow, exfoliates dead skin (to help with detoxification), invigorates skin (don’t be afraid if you have dry skin, it works wonders for all skin types), stimulates the lymphatic system and flushes toxins. Use a natural bristle brush, short strokes towards the heart (legs, arms, torso, back, buttocks/hips). Then shower or take an epsom salt bath (hot water). You can buy the brush at HEB or the health food store.
Lymphatic Massage – this is a special type of massage that focuses on moving fluid through the lymphatic system where it may be clogged or sluggish. This aids in moving toxins and excess liquid out of the body and clearing the lymphatic system.
Alpha Lipoic Acid (600mg/day) has been suggested as a beneficial supplement, but there are mixed results on it’s effectiveness (likely due to the quality of the supplement used in the study)
Red Clover Tea (3x per day) has also been suggested to help metabolize toxins for exit from the body
Whatever you can do to help your lymphatic system run smoothly will help you feel better and look better.