It is made up of a network of lymphatic vessels that carry lymph — a clear, watery fluid that contains protein molecules, salts, glucose, urea, and other substances — throughout the body.
The lymphatic system aids the immune system in removing and destroying waste, debris, dead blood cells, pathogens, toxins, and cancer cells.
It absorbs fats and fat-soluble vitamins from the digestive system and delivers these nutrients to the cells of the body where they are used by the cells.
The lymphatic system also removes excess fluid, and waste products from the interstitial spaces between the cells.
Here's how to keep this vital system healthy:
- Perform a regular stretching program to release muscle imbalances and constrictions, which in turn, increases the blood and lymphatic circulation. See Strengthening by Bob Anderson, “Basic Body Stretch” by Michelle J. Pouliot, or Yoga and Tai Chi for stretching program ideas.
- Receive regular massage therapy to increase blood and lymphatic circulation.
- Finish a hot shower with a one-minute cool or cold-water rinse, which causes a superficial circulatory flush and stimulates the central nervous system.
- Deep breathing exercises, through the movement of the diaphragm, helps “pump” the lymphatics, improving drainage of the entire system.
Here's to your health,
Resources: Kids Health, Lymph Notes