How to support your lymphatic system

How to support your lymphatic system

The lymphatic system is like the body's own personal army, working around the clock to keep us healthy and protected against harmful infection and disease. It’s responsible for carrying lymph fluid, which contains white blood cells and other immune system cells, throughout the body and also helps to remove toxins and waste from the body - making it an essential part of overall health and well-being. Unlike the circulatory system, the lymphatic system does not have a pump like the heart. Instead, it relies on muscle contractions and movements to circulate lymph fluid throughout the body, which makes maintaining a healthy lymphatic system essential to support our body's immune function and overall health.

As females, in particular, it’s important we’re taking care of our lymphatic system, especially during our menstrual cycles. The body tends to retain water during this time, leading to a feeling of puffiness and discomfort. Additionally, hormonal changes during pregnancy can also cause swelling in various parts of the body. Fortunately, there are several ways to support your lymphatic system. We’re breaking them down with the help of Free Soul Nutritionist, Harriet Well.

Like any other system in the body, the lymphatic system can become overwhelmed or compromised, leading to a range of health problems. Fortunately, there are several ways you can support your lymphatic system and keep it functioning at its best. Here are some tips to get you started:

Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of water is essential for maintaining healthy lymphatic function. The lymphatic system relies on water to flush out toxins and waste, so make sure you are drinking enough water each day. Aim for at least 8 glasses of water daily. Creating habits such as drinking a big glass of water after waking in the morning and carrying a reusable water bottle with you can really help.

Exercise regularly: Regular exercise can help to boost lymphatic flow, improving the body's ability to remove waste and toxins. Try to incorporate both cardio and strength training exercises into your routine, as both have been shown to benefit the lymphatic system.

Eat a healthy diet: A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help to support lymphatic function. These foods are high in antioxidants and other nutrients that help to reduce inflammation and promote healthy immune function.

Practice good hygiene: Good hygiene practices, such as washing your hands regularly, can help to prevent the spread of infection and reduce the workload on the lymphatic system.

Try dry brushing: Dry brushing is a technique where you use a soft-bristled brush to gently massage your skin. This can help to stimulate lymphatic flow, promoting the removal of toxins and waste from the body. Want to learn more about how to do this, YouTube has some great tutorials.

Get enough sleep: Getting enough sleep is essential for maintaining healthy immune function and supporting lymphatic flow. Aim for 7-8 hours per night of quality sleep to ensure your body has a chance to rest and reset. Establishing good sleep hygiene habits can be really beneficial.

Manage stress: Chronic stress can have a negative impact on lymphatic function, so it is important to find ways to manage stress effectively. Yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises are all great options. 

Supporting your lymphatic system is essential for maintaining optimal health and well-being. By following these tips and creating healthy habits accordingly, you can help to keep your lymphatic system functioning at its best, reducing the risk of illness and disease. 

Written by Harriet Lidgard 
Nutritionist (BSc) & Health Coach
@harriet_well