Our lymph system is the Cinderella of the body. Ignored and abused, we generally leave our lymph to its own devices. Yet we neglect it at our peril. For just an unhappy lymphatic system spells an unhealthy body, a well-functioning lymph system makes the whole body look brighter and heathier. Skin appears clear and unblemished; eyes are bright and shiny; wounds heal quickly and easily, and colds are rare and easily overcome. Even cellulite finds it hard to get a grip if our lymph is flowing freely.
The signs of a sluggish lymph are swollen ankles, knees or puffy eyes. Frequent colds or slow-healing wounds can also be prior indications. However, swollen glands are surprisingly a fantastico sign as they indicate that they are functioning. Unfortunately, the modern living of human beings is working against our lymph.
The fantastico news is that with some general maintenance we can keep the lymph flowing as it should.
Here are some fantastico ways to ease the load on your lymph!
- Swim and rebound: Exercise is a powerful pump for the lymph, but high-impact aerobics classes are not ideal. If you overuse muscles, they create more waste, rather than help the lymph. Thus, swimming, walking and yoga are highly recommended. Bouncing on a small trampoline for 10 minutes a day is ideal, because it reverses the force of gravity in your body and so stimulates the lymph.
- Detox your diet: High-fat diets slow the circulation of lymph and encourage a build-up of waste— dairy products and red meat are the main culprits. Detox specialists recommend a diet which is rich in alkaline foods and is also abundant in fresh fruits, vegetables and sprouted seeds. And make sure you drink plenty of water (at least 2 liters a day).
- Brush your skin: Regular brushing moves the lymph along. Five minutes of skin brushing is the equivalent of 25 minutes of jogging in its effect on the lymphatic system. Use either a natural bristle brush or a damp flannel with a bicarbonate and salt mixture, and always brush moving towards the heart.
- Add rosemary to your bath: Put a couple of drops of rosemary in a warm bath and relax. Then, gradually add cold water until the water is quite cool— the change of temperature will also stimulate the lymph.
- Stand on your head: All yoga positions, not just headstands, combined with deep breathing, help the lymphatic system to keep pumping. Lymph doesn’t drain properly if you have no muscular movement.
- Drink herbal infusions: Echinacea is fantastic and is highly recommended as the supreme lymph cleanser. Else, boiling or steeping a tablespoon of fenugreek for around 15 minutes and drinking the decoction.