How to boost your immune system

Skip links

10 Ways to Improve Your Lymphatic System Function
It will also help guide you through starting and maintaining an exercise program that suits your abilities and lifestyle. What may appear to be a stressful situation for one person is not for another. How can you improve your immune system? Designed to stimulate the flow of lymph and drainage of toxins, specialized lymphatic massage uses gentle pressure and rhythmic circular motions. So far, researchers who are studying this question think that normal exposure to moderate cold doesn't increase your susceptibility to infection.

Cancer & Heart Disease

11 Ways to Boost Your Lymphatic System for Great Health

NaturalHealth The lymphatic system is responsible for neutralizing toxins and purifying the body , all while transporting a precious cargo of infection-fighting cells. Yet, this life-sustaining group of nodes, glands and organs, is often overlooked or taken for granted. The result is a sluggish or congested lymphatic system, which can set the stage for respiratory infections, ear and sinus infections, edema and swollen glands.

Fortunately, the holistic techniques — which will be highlighted in this article — can help you unclog, stimulate and purify your lymph system naturally. Unlike the circulatory system, the lymphatic system lacks a propulsive center, or pump. Instead, lymph is moved via the relaxation and contraction of muscles and joints.

You can stimulate circulation and help propel lymph throughout the body by jumping on a trampoline for 10 to 30 minutes. You can help clear a congested lymphatic system by raising your consumption of raw foods — particularly fruits and vegetables, which have naturally-occurring enzymes that help clear toxins and promote their exit from the body.

Fruits and vegetables also raise the water level in the body and help to hydrate it, while their healthy amounts of fiber promote intestinal function, making it easier for intestinal fluids to migrate to lymph nodes.

Also, raw foods tend to be alkaline, helping to neutralize pathogens and relieve the burden on the lymph. In addition, at the same time, try to reduce consumption of lymph-clogging dairy, sugar, gluten and processed foods. As the lymphatic system is 95 percent water, it is important to avoid becoming dehydrated.

Experts advise drinking half your weight, in ounces, of water a day. Remember, not all water is created equal — so if possible drink pure spring water or purified water to reduce your toxic burden.

Use an inversion table, which allows you to be suspended upside down while strapped in by the feet. Being in this unusual position can help promote free-flowing lymph. Use a quality inversion table with a safety strap to control the angle of inversion and safety locks to hold it in place. Herbal substances can enhance the lymphatic system by improving lymphatic flow and drainage and facilitating removal of toxins.

Goosegrass, or Galium aparnine — also known as cleavers — is a time-honored lymphatic tonic, valued for removing and draining trapped bacteria from lymph glands. Using a brush with coarse bristles, gently brush the skin in the direction of the heart. Although you may feel silly doing this, experts say it stimulates circulation and encourages the movement of lymph. By the way, dry brushing can be particularly helpful in breaking down deposits of cellulite caused by a sluggish lymphatic system.

Utilized in the body to break down proteins and aid in digestion and metabolism, enzymes can help dissolve and clear away toxic accumulations in both the lymph and the blood, promoting lymphatic drainage and stimulating the immune system.

You can take them as a supplement — or obtain them through diet by eating papaya, which contains the enzyme papain, and pineapple, which contains bromelain. Designed to stimulate the flow of lymph and drainage of toxins, specialized lymphatic massage uses gentle pressure and rhythmic circular motions.

You can also perform a do-it-yourself version by gently massaging the lymph nodes under your jaw. According to a review published in The Journal of Manual Manipulative Therapy , lymphatic drainage massage facilitated removal of waste products in the lymphatic system and helped to reduce edema.

This applies particularly to underwire bras , which can significantly interfere with lymphatic flow and drainage from lymph nodes located in the armpit and upper chest. Possible consequences of long-term use of constrictive clothing could include impairment of lymphatic function, fibrocystic breast tissue and even breast cancer. These sugar-, color- and preservative-laden beverages add to the already overburdened workload your lymph system must handle.

Eat more raw fruit on an empty stomach. The enzymes and acids in fruit are powerful lymph cleansers. Eat them on an empty stomach for best digestion and maximum lymph-cleansing benefits. Most fruits are digested within 30 minutes or so and quickly help you feel better.

Discover the best herbal remedies, foods, and therapies to get your lymph moving… 6. Eat plenty of green vegetables to get adequate chlorophyll to help purify your blood and lymph. Eat raw, unsalted nuts and seeds to power up your lymph with adequate fatty acids. Choose from walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, macadamias, Brazil nuts, flaxseeds, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.

Add a few lymph-boosting herbal teas to your day, such as astragalus, echinacea, goldenseal or wild indigo root tea. Avoid using herbs while pregnant or lactating and avoid long-term use of any herb without first consulting a qualified professional. Dry skin brush before showering. Use a natural bristle brush. Brush your dry skin in circular motions upward from the feet to the torso and from the fingers to the chest.

You want to work in the same direction as your lymph flows—toward the heart. Alternate hot and cold showers for several minutes. The heat dilates the blood vessels and the cold causes them to contract. Avoid this type of therapy if you have a heart or blood pressure condition or if you are pregnant.

Get a gentle massage. Studies show that a gentle massage can push up to 78 percent of stagnant lymph back into circulation.

Massage frees trapped toxins. You can also try a lymph drainage massage. It is a special form of massage that specifically targets lymph flow in the body. Whatever type of massage you choose, make sure it is gentle.

Browse by Topic