Do your clients have nagging health problems such fatigue, excess weight or immune issues? Maybe some of these issues have dwindled with basic health-building principles, but they continue to struggle overall?
As a Functional Health Coach, ongoing symptoms like these can point you to one area in particular that needs to be addressed but is often overlooked; a function of the body that is vital to healing – detoxification.
One of the MOST IMPORTANT systems of the body for detoxification is the lymphatic system.
There are many clues to help determine whether your client might have lymphatic system issues. Luckily, there are simple habit changes they can make to assist the lymphatic system and promote detoxification.
To help your client understand when and how they should make changes, as a Health Coach, it is important to educate them on why. The lymphatic system, which runs parallel to the circulatory system, contains hundreds of lymphatic vessels and bean shaped nodes
that are located throughout the body. This system carries a clear fluid, known as lymph throughout the body. Lymphatic fluid helps to deliver vital white blood cells throughout the body which help to fight disease. It is also where toxins are deposited from the body to be filtered by the lymph nodes which can cause issues to arise.
The lymphatic system is a vital part of our immune system and when it becomes clogged and the lymphatic fluid is not allowed to flow freely, it compromises your immune system and allows toxins to build up. The resulting toxic build up can contribute to symptoms and overall Metabolic Chaos®, and lead to infection and even disease.
How do you know if the lymphatic system is clogged?
There are several signature signs if the lymphatic system is not moving effectively and toxins are building up in the body. These are simple signs you can look for to determine if you need to investigate the area of detoxification further with your client. A backed up lymphatic system can lead to:
- Swelling in your fingers/rings fitting more tightly
- Brain fog
- Digestive issues
- Sinus infections
- Skin problems/dry and or itchy skin
- Enlarged lymph nodes
- Chronic fatigue
- Feeling sore or stiff when you wake up in the morning
- Unexplained injuries
- Excess weight
- Cold hands and feet
- Worsened allergies
- Food sensitivities
- Increased colds and flu
Unlike the circulatory system, in which the heart acts as a pump, the lymphatic system has no pump. But there are certain things your client can do to activate their lymphatic system and get it flowing again to promote healing.
How can you get the lymphatic system moving?
When you exercise and actively move your body, it activates the flow of lymphatic fluid throughout the body. Exercising is the most effective way of increasing the function of the lymphatic system. You do not have to engage in vigorous exercise to engage your lymphatic system. Gentle to moderate intensity is all you need, which will be easier on those who struggle with fatigue. Exercise also helps you to perspire, which helps to release toxins. This can lighten the toxic load on the lymphatic system.
Slow, relaxed deep breathing is a simple way to activate the lymphatic system. Most people do not breathe deeply throughout the day. In fact, while focusing on tasks it is actually easy to hold your breath without being aware that you are. But taking some time throughout your day and allowing yourself to breathe deeply can help to get that lymphatic system working to clear out toxins.
Dry brushing is the use of a soft, natural bristle brush on dry skin in order to physically activate the lymphatic system. Here is a video that will show you the best way to incorporate skin brushing into your daily routine.
Clean Up The Diet
Pre-packaged and highly processed foods contain a large amount of chemical additives, preservatives, artificial colorings and flavors. These chemicals add to the toxic load on the lymphatic system and the rest of the organs of the detoxification system.
Switching to a diet of whole foods instead of pre-packaged, convenience foods can be incredibly beneficial. Vegetables like dark, leafy greens, low sugar fruits and nuts such as walnuts and almonds can actually help to promote the flow of lymphatic fluid. As a Functional Diagnostic Nutrition® Practitioner, trainees can learn a step-by-step method to creating all-natural health building protocols for each client, including specific education for diet as well as rest, exercise, stress reduction, and supplement support.
Don’t Wear Tight Fitting Clothing
Clothing that is tight on the body can reduce circulation in the body and can actually reduce and restrict the movement of the lymphatic system. Bras and tight fitting underwear can constrict flow in areas where there are a concentrate number of lymph nodes. It is okay to wear these items on occasion, but regular use can cause issues over time.
Drink Plenty of Water
We know this should go without saying, but sometimes clients need a reminder of the importance of water! All of the organs and systems of the body need regular hydration in order to function properly…the lymphatic system is no exception. The lymphatic system is comprised primarily of water and so it is vital that you are getting enough clean, filtered water to support full functioning.
With so many living a sedentary life, eating unhealthy foods and not actively moving the lymphatic system, it is no surprise that many face the symptoms that accompany a sluggish or clogged lymphatic system. But you can help your client take action and support detoxification.
Encouraging clients to move lymph will help them to avoid chronic illness, increase energy and get on a path to better health. With a Health Coaching Certification from Functional Diagnostic Nutrition® you can take the guessing game out of your work with clients and get them on a personalized path to healing.