With spring officially here and summer on its way, now is the perfect time to refresh how you look after your health and wellbeing.
The current Covid-19 or coronavirus pandemic has also given us the time and space to refocus on what’s really important, as well as inspire us to take extra measures to boost immunity.
Your lymphatic system is a vital part of your body, with its maintenance essential for protecting the wider body from infection and disease.
It’s ultimately the first line of defence in a healthy immune system, a role that is more vital than ever considering the current state of the UK and the rest of the world.
Your lymphatic system supports important bodily functions via a network of lymph vessels and nodes. The lymph fluid within this system actively transports white blood cells around the body whilst draining tissues and cells of waste.
Read this handy guide to find out more about how the lymphatic system works.
Considering its significant role within the body, supporting your lymphatic system is of the utmost importance. Discover our top tips for limbering up your lymphatics just in time for summer…
Improve lymphatic system circulation with exercise. Studies have shown that the more we move, the more effective our lymphatic systems become. But you don’t have to complete a tough workout everyday to get your lymphatic system pumping.
Gentle exercise like walking, cycling, swimming, and even using the stairs more regularly will guarantee better lymphatic health.
A sluggish system can leave you more susceptible to health issues, with fatigue, bloating, skin problems, infections, headaches, and stress common side effects of poor lymphatic health.
Speaking of exercise, yoga offers the perfect workout for your lymphatic system. Certain yoga poses – particularly those that invert the legs, such as the downward facing dog and cat-cow – can help the lymphatic network function at its best.
The bow, cobra, and extended triangle poses are also recommended for people with a weak lymphatic system. The use of breath in yoga is integral to the maintenance of your lymphatic system too as Gaia explains:
“One aspect of yoga that has dramatic effects on the lymphatic system is pranayama. Pranayama is the practice of deep, controlled breathing. By practicing these deep breaths, you are able to better circulate good fluids throughout your body and remove bad toxins.”
Practising deep breathing, either with or without yoga, provides the pressure change and pumping mechanism needed to get your lymphatic system moving.
It also calms the mind to reduce stress and relax internal organs and muscles to benefit the lymphatic system further.
As your lymphatic network lies just under the skin’s surface, even light massage can help to stimulate it. Lymph massage is particularly effective for improving lymph flow and unlocking the many benefits that go hand-in-hand with a strong lymphatic system.
It targets the lymphatic network to encourage the flow of lymph fluid throughout the body. This aids drainage to boost circulation and immunity. It also reduces bloating and puffiness to reveal healthy skin.
Those looking to boost lymphatic draining and reveal healthier skin should try Gua Sha. This all-natural, ancient Chinese alternative therapy uses a special tool to apply pressure to the skin and unlock some pretty impressive benefits.
As we cannot currently get out for a hands-on, professional lymph massage, Gua Sha offers a great starting point. It can be practised in the comfort of your own home – here’s how.
Eat and drink right
Looking after your body from the inside out is something we’d always recommend, and a well-functioning lymphatic system relies on a great diet. By consuming wholesome and nutritious food, your body can successfully metabolise your lymphatic system.
Swap comfort and processed foods for a balanced diet packed with protein, fruit and vegetables. Nuts, seeds, red cabbage, avocado, garlic, ginger, citrus fruits, bananas, broccoli, and salmon are particularly great for lymphatic health.
Hydrating your body is vital to your lymphatic health too. Up your water intake to boost lymphatic function and enjoy many more benefits.