I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but detox diet cleanses do not work. When healthy, our bodies already naturally detox themselves. I will tell you about a way to aid the detoxification that our bodies already do…
Lemme begin by bringing up the lymphatic system, a system that plays a vital role in the immune system.
The lymphatic system includes about 600-700 lymph nodes, which are essentially checkpoints throughout our bodies filtering out unwanted microorganisms. Lymph fluid is pumped through the lymph vessels. The lymph fluid gets filtered through the lymph nodes.
However, the lymph fluid doesn’t have access to a pump the way the blood has with the heart.
In fact, lymph fluid is pumped through the body via muscle contraction. Muscles contraction occurs when we exercise as well as when we breath deeply and consciously.
So throw your detox diet out the window and engage in something way easier instead: breathing!
I didn’t realize how awful my breathing habits were until college, after I started yoga classes.
I would subconsciously tense up often, allowing my breath to get shallower and shallower.
I’d wonder, Why is remembering to breathe so hard for me???
It sounds bizarre, and it is bizarre. But also common. That’s why yoga instructors remind their students to breathe, over and over and over again.
Personally, as someone who struggled with severe anxiety, I can say that it’s actually quite easy to forget to breathe, to really breathe. When one feels uneasy and apprehensive about the world around them, breathing doesn’t occur as a natural solution, or at least it didn’t to me.
And, looking back, it’s no wonder I was sick so often as a child. I suffered especially at the mercy of my tonsils: Low and behold, I found out tonsils are a part of the lymphatic system and are composed of tissue similar to the tissue of lymph nodes.
Something as simple as conscious breathing would have upped my immune system game and eased my anxiety.
My former inadequate relationship with my breath contributes to the reason why I am now so passionate about this topic. It took longer than I thought it would for me to acquire the habit of conscious breathing. I can attest to how disconnected from the breath humans can become and how life-changing it is to get in step with it.
Anyway, the moral of this post is: Don’t neglect your lymphatic system. Remember to move and breathe to pump the fluids through the nodes to maintain health and actually detox your body.
Even on days you don’t want to exercise, take a few minutes to really breathe. Try it while showering, gardening, walking the dog, doing the dishes, commuting, etc. Anywhere, anytime. Your body and mind will appreciate the love. And remember: It’s legit detoxing.
I should write a separate post based around the importance of breath, I think… 😉
For detailed information on the lymphatic system, give this video a go.
With love and gratitude,
Tell me: How much or how little attention do you give your breath?