The lymphatic system transports tissue fluid (lymph) and stores waste that the body cannot yet process (as in “overload”) in the lymph nodes. These are the “glands” that get swollen when you’re getting sick or have developed an infection. These swollen glands, or lymph nodes, are concentrated in soft areas around joints (armpits, throat, groin, back of knees, etc) but are located throughout your body.
The lymph system doesn’t have a pump to move it like the heart moves blood through your veins (it’s not a circular system).
Instead, it relies on muscle movement to pump lymphatic fluid from the cells, finally dumping into the cardiovascular system when it gets close to the heart. This means your lymph won’t circulate while your body is at rest, i.e. sluggish with a lack of exercise.
It’s important to note that because of the strong emotional component of this system, lymphatic congestion can also indicate an overload of unprocessed emotions. Please see Spiritual Congestion and Bach Flower Essences for help in clearing emotions.
To avoid lymphatic congestion when your lifestyle involves a lot of sitting (at a desk or workbench, in a car), it is really important to get up out of your chair, at the very least every couple of hours, to walk around and stretch. Move your arms, move your legs, do the twist, just get movin’.
Indications: Chronic fatigue syndrome, severe itching, Epstein-Barr, Hodgkin’s disease, breast cancer, human papilloma virus (HPV), enlarged or swollen lymph nodes, lymphoma, tendency to hold weight in the upper thighs (“saddle-bags” or “pones”).