Have you heard of Lymphatic Detoxification?
Have you heard of lymphatic drainage massage? This technique is probably the most we hear about the lymphatic system in general. Unlike the urinary system or digestive system, the lymph system tends to be viewed as the necessary but often ignored wall-flower in the process of detoxification.
In fact, the lymphatic system is a complex drainage network involving fluids, vessels and organs. Its
primary role is to remove cellular waste, proteins, foreign bodies, excess fluid, toxins and other microorganisms and return them to the bloodstream. Via the lymph nodes, this system helps to filter out toxins purify our bodies of waste.
There are approximately 6-10 litres of lymph in the body at any one time, which is pumped around via muscular contraction and movement. Lymph flows in one direction only – usually upwards towards the heart. When the body is under stress (infection, stress, lack of physical activity, dehydration, toxic overload) tissue swelling can result and protein accumulation in the lymph nodes occurs. The result is a build up of toxins, which can end up affecting the normal function of the cells. Long tem this can lead to underactive metabolic function of cells.
A classic example of chronic lymphatic congestion is the formation of cellulite, which is related in part to lymphatic congestion and poor blood flow to the affected areas. You can confirm the poor blood-flow yourself by feeling any areas of your body that have cellulite – they feel cooler than other areas of your skin due to the lack of warm blood supply to the area.
The body tries to protect itself from free toxins floating around in the body…after all they can damage our primary organs. As a result toxins are stored in many different ways in the body – mucus in the respiratory system, deposits in fat cells, as cholesterol or around the joints. Stimulating the flow of toxins out of the body by promoting lymphatic flow can help reduce your body’s overall toxic load.
There are a number of easy and effective ways to promote lymphatic flow including:
- dry body brushing
- vigorous exercise
- muscular activity (weights, yoga, tai chi or pilates).
Jodie from Bodecare promotes dry body brushing as it stimulates the dense network of nerves that run just under the skin layer, which in-turn increase blood circulation and the function of the lymphatic system.
Another method suggested by Jodie is alternate cold and hot showers. This method for alternate showers comes from the Bodecare website:
Did you know that a prolonged hot shower without alternation with cool water (the type of shower most people take) is fatiguing and causes circulatory congestion? On the other hand, the properly performed Alternate Hot and Cold Shower exercises the circulatory system, nerves, endocrine glands and skin.
For best results of an Alternate Hot/Cold Shower you can use the following steps as a guide:
- Conduct Bodecare’s Dry Body Brushing routine (details on how-to-guide)
- Begin warm to hot shower for 2-3 minutes. Water should be at a comfortable temperature.
- Follow with a cold shower for 15 seconds. Once again water should be at a comfortable temperature.
- Repeat with hot and cold shower at 15 seconds each.
- Towel dry
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