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Self Care 101: Dry Brushing

Dry Brushing for your Lymphatic System

Health is one of those things we take for granted until it's in jeopardy. 2020 has put a spotlight on health and wellness. It seems that now more than ever it’s increasingly important to boost your body’s overall health and ability to fight off disease.

One key player in supporting the body's immune response is the lymphatic system.

Your lymphatic system is a system of tissues and organs that help rid the body of toxins, and waste. The main function of the lymphatic system is to transport lymph, fluid containing infection-fighting white blood cells, throughout the body.

The lymphatic system circulates lymph in the body similarly to how blood is circulated, with one major difference being that the lymphatic system does not have an organ to pump lymph, like the heart does with blood. Instead, lymph is moved primarily by your movement! When you move, and even when you breathe deeply, you help facilitate the movement of lymph! Another way that lymph moves in the body is by using a specialized type of muscle within the walls of larger lymphatic vessels, that actively pumps by contracting in rhythmic waves. (Scallan et al, 2016)

Keeping a daily yoga practice or movement practice is not only good for your mind and body - but also a great help for your lymphatic system!

Another way to give your lymphatic system a boost and help your body detox this winter is by dry brushing.

Dry brushing is a great way to gently exfoliate the skin and improve the skin’s ability to detox. Be sure to use a brush with natural, soft bristles and use very light brush strokes to remove any dead skin cells.

Dry brushing is also helpful for lymphatic drainage, especially when brush strokes are done in the direction of the body’s lymph nodes. Brushing towards the lymph nodes is said to increase the movement of lymph and thus support the immune system’s function.

If you have sensitive skin, psoriasis, eczema, or open wounds avoid dry brushing unless advised by a doctor to do so.

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