Do you know the importance of your lymph nodes and your lymphatic system?
Maybe you have you only heard about it when people get cancer in their lymph nodes, but it is a very important part of your system that is keeping you as healthy as possible.
What is your lymphatic system for?
Your lymphatic is basically your body’s waste removal system. It is made up of vessels, tissues, and organs that circulate lymph which is a clear fluid full of white blood cells to protect you from invading bacteria/viruses/pathogens. We have 3X more lymphatic fluid than we do blood. This system is responsible for draining up to 85% of the fluid around our cells.
What does your lymphatic system do?
It is the second part of your immune system that is responsible for absorbing fats out of your digestive tract, helps to remove toxins and cellular waste. It regulates fluid balance, carries healing white blood cells, and these fats along with fatty acids where they need to be. If you have an overgrowth of bacteria it helps to remove it, decreases inflammation, infection, or congestion.
How does the lymphatic system work?
We have an Autonomic Nervous System made up of 2 almost opposite ones. The first is the Parasympathetic Nervous System used when we digest or relax to heal. If you are on the warmer side, sweat easily, maintain a healthy weight well and tend to heal quickly from scratches or bruises, you are most likely Parasympathetic dominant. This system triggers appropriate chemicals and hormones to regenerate or clear the body of wastes.
The second pathway is your Sympathetic Nervous System commonly known as the fight or flight mode. It is involuntary and instinctual to keep us safe unconsciously by pushing the pedal down on the adrenals for high energy to “escape”. It limits cleanup and digestion so individuals with this system being dominant experience cold extremities, dry skin, slow healing, fatigue when they are still from the crash as well as difficulty losing weight at times. For more information on your adrenals read “Feel exhausted all day? ” blog.
I am looking at the cellular level on Hair Analysis results to see if one is Sympathetic Dominant or Parasympathetic Dominant to make corrections to biochemistry. When we can shut down the over worked adrenals, true healing can begin.
Both systems run parallel in our body and are embedded in our fascia, which is like an internal netting holding our organs, vessels, bones, muscles and nerves in place. This net is mostly lymphatic fluid with some blood that stabilizes our structure. Fascia can also house physical trauma such as scarring or even emotional trauma that is trapped in cell memory.
Unlike when your heart beats and your blood flows, lymphatic fluid only moves when the fascia does, due to the muscles movement underneath or within. We then eliminate through our blood (women in menses), urine, stool, sweat, and our breath! If we don’t move we are no different than a stagnant swamp instead of a pristine flowing brook.
Where are your lymphatic organs?
The cleansing and removal process works through the following:
- Lymph nodes that are along the vessels in bean-shaped tissue formation that act as filters to trap and destroy cancer cells, bacteria, or foreign invaders.
- Tonsils that catch invaders in mucous to be destroyed.
- The spleen on the upper left side of your abdomen that filters your red blood cells to break down and remove damaged ones or recycle components like iron to make new ones.
- Mucous membranes including intestinal tracts, urinary parts, nose, mouth, eyelids, trachea, lungs, and other structures containing mucous.
- Bone marrow tissue that makes lymphocytes to go to the thymus.
- The thymus behind your breast bone above your heart that creates killer T cells or T lymphocytes to fight infections, foreign substances or diseases.
What can slow the lymphatic fluid or the lymph nodes?
Everyday life. We are challenged daily by hundreds of toxins in cleaning products, personal care products, food contaminants, poor air quality, heavy metal toxicity, hormone disruptions, and environmental chemical toxins so keeping the flow moving is more important than ever.
What can block lymphatic flow?
- Scars on the fascia with adhesion
- Lack of movement
- Structural Blockages (pinched nerve or bone that needs adjustment from a Chiropractor)
- Trauma that is not processed or healed properly
How can I keep my lymphatic system healthy?
- Proper nutrition. A clean diet specific to your needs as found on Hair Analysis results as well as eliminating sugar, salt, unhealthy hydrogenated or polyunsaturated oils, and trans-fats.
- Chronic stress can cause cortisol, an anti-inflammatory hormone to create acidosis which clogs up lymphatic drainage. If consistent adrenal pushing aggravates the sympathetic nervous system, cancer can significantly progress.
- Sleep! This is essential when we need to heal from daily life, toxins and inflammation. We rebuild the immune system and cleanse our brains of dead proteins during deeper sleep.
- Exercise is a must as the lymph is not a muscular contraction like our soft muscle tissues in the digestive tract. It is more like a garden hose that needs movement to aid the fluid through the system. Some of the best exercises would be a mini re-bounder trampoline, jumping rope, lifting weight, HIIT exercises, or sprinting. Even Qi gong to strengthen and stretch the muscles can be beneficial.
- Shocking or stimulating some of your circulation with dry skin brushing or alternating hot and cold showers for 5-10 minutes daily can aid in pushing the fluids.
- Hydration! Without water, nothing can move including the debris cleansed from cells, digestion, free radicals (dead cells), and toxins. Non-sweetened, non-caffeinated drinks such as tea or spring water are best at 3 liters to a gallon a day is best.
- Seek thermography to identify unusual blood flow and blockages to areas in the breast or nodes without the harmful radiation found in mammography. You can then work on drainage methods. Without our lymph nodes, we can develop lymphedema which is a built-up fluid in the extremities and tissues.
What methods can I do to keep the lymphatic system open?
- skin brushing
- lymphatic massage (with extra water after to flush toxins released)
- sauna therapy to sweat and circulate blood flow as well
- acupuncture to increase energy flow and healing
- eat bitter foods to cleanse bile and fluids
- castor oil packs
- vibration plate machines
- supplements to cleanse and bind toxins
- scar release and therapy
- dental corrections for meridian flows
As you can see our lymph system is essential for our overall health and needs self-care too. If we are not adequately cleansing our body daily of all of the toxins and insults we encounter, we fall ill. Let’s not let that happen to you.
If you are ready to “clean house” and see which nervous system is dominating,
LET’S CHAT about your health goals!
Learn 19 ways to improve your energy and get your lymphatic system moving.
Copyright Scientific Nutrition, LLC 2021