Lymph is a vital system of vessels that removes cell waste, proteins, excess fluids, viruses and bacteria, it filters and cleans the spaces between the cells and when it works well we feel healthy and have a strong defence system against illness. When its not working well our immune system is down and we can feel fatigue and low. Now that the sniffle time of year is here and the digestive fire can be a bit low (see previous post) it is a great time to give yourself a lymph drainage massage for the face, thus reducing congestion and puffiness and reducing congestion and pain in the sinuses. Also it keeps us looking fresh and younger and if you are like me living in a heavily polluted place then it helps to remove the toxin build up.
Here is how, but go gently with your touch as the lymph glands are near to the surface of the skin so we don’t want to damage them.
- Cross your hands at the wrist, this is just to make your touch lighter, then place your fingers at the venus part of the throat – the little indent just above the collar bone, then gently stroke the fingertips outwards along the collar bone X10
- Keeping the hands crossed then place the fingertips to the back of your ear and stroke downwards following the jaw line to the throat X 10
- Again keeping the wrists crossed then place the fingertips at the centre of the chin and stroke outward along the jaw line X 10
- Then uncross the wrists and place the ring and middle finger to the side of your ear and stroke downward to the jaw, (along the sideburn line)
- Next place the fingertips to the point between the eyebrows and stroke outward along the eyebrow line towards the temple X 10
- Then gently place the middle finger to the point on the cheek bone under the eye (towards the outer side of the eye) and gently press and release slightly pulling the skin outward, X 10 then do again but placing the finger a little more underneath the eye X 10.
- Then repeat the whole process backward starting at point 6 to 1.
The lymphatic system is tied to the immune system if the flow of lymphatic materials slows then the immune system is weakened so this is another way to increase the immune system and keep ourselves healthy and glowing! It is also a great way to reduce the aging effect and increase the antibodies that fight off infections.
It is best to practice this in the morning but you can also practice it throughout the day to keep that fresh look and feel. Make it part of your daily routine and morning asana practice you could begin with this gentle massage also leading you into your practice in a gentle and mindful manor.
For now have beautiful days and allow the energy of nature to surround you, and nurture you, let us breathe life into our hearts through every moment being ever present here and now.
May we all experience what is good and pure and be free from suffering
Om shanti shanti shanti
Mangala / Nicky.