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breast health

I know that October brings up a lot of emotion for a lot of people.  If you have loved ones you’ve lost or have watched painfully struggle with cancer; I send you love, prayers and compassion!

And, I am infuriated with all the fear and misinformation that is being spread today.  Even for people who have no reason to fear developing cancer; there is fear.

A fear that is massively reinforced everywhere you look all through October.

So instead, I want to bring hope and awareness that focuses on true health and prevention. 

Even in my bubble of natural health with clients and friends; I’ve recently had a number of women come to me with fears of breast or cervical cancer.  They’ve had painful, lumpy breasts, or abnormal growths and immediately started thinking cancer.  How could they not in our society? 

How many times have you had a symptom pop up and instantly worried it was cancer?  How often do you notice the fear of cancer coming up for you?  We can shift this fear to hope. We can change this focus on disease to a focus on health. Wouldn’t you love some real ways to promote prevention? 

SO with that in mind, here is some wisdom for your Lymphatic system.  It IS your body’s defense system and a key player in breast cancer prevention.

You’re lymphatic system manages the elimination of toxins from your body.  By moving immune cells and dead cellular debris through the body to where it can be removed;  it functions as your body’s primary immune defense.  Like a garbage truck route, It contains more than 600 “collection sites” known as lymph nodes.  The lymphatic fluid carries disease-fighting material to your cells to protect them.  But what if your “garbage truck” is full and unable to gather more garbage?  When your system is sluggish or blocked, you invite disease in. 

Ladies, the largest reservoirs of lymph fluid are located in your breasts and armpits.  The very areas that we find so much breast cancer. 

So how do you know if your lymphatic system needs some attention?  Here’s a few signs your lymphatic system isn’t keeping up with the garbage:

  • Soreness and/or stiffness in the morning
  • Feeling tired and sluggish
  • Bloating, swelling or puffiness
  • Itchy skin
  • Breast swelling or soreness with each cycle
  • Dry skin
  • Brain fog and poor concentration
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Cellulite
  • Frequent colds and flu, recurrent sinus infections

So of course it’s important to know what causes lymphatic congestion!…

  • Stress creates an acidic environment in the body and the lymphatic system drains better in an alkaline environment.
  • Digestive issues. Imbalances in the gut may irritate intestinal villi, which is a classic reason for lymph congestion. The majority of the lymph in the body surrounds the gut (Gut Associated Lymphatic Tissues – GALT), So the quality of the villi are critical for proper lymph flow, detoxification, assimilation and immunity.
  • One of the most common reasons for lymphatic congestion is dehydration.  The body needs water to help flush these toxins out. 
  • Iodine deficiencies. Iodine supports the lymph at the cellular level.
  • Tight clothing. Those Spanx videos are hilarious but if you’re really wearing them it is time to re-think this for your health.
  • Environmental toxins. Pesticides, heavy metals, poor water quality, radiation and EMF’s from cell phones and wifi just to name a few.  Our bodies have a lot to keep up with!

And finally, a few of my favorite ways to support the lymphatic system and boost your breast health:

  1. Breathing.  Research has shown that just a few minutes of belly breathing can slow your heart rate and induce feelings of calm. This will help reduce acidity in your body as well as get your parasympathetic nervous system turned on so healing can begin.   And if you can allow some breathing space in your clothing you will double this effort!
  2. Exercise. Yes another reason it is good for you. We all know it’s good for our heart and can help with stress but it is also good for your lymphatic system. Even just 10 minutes daily of jumping on a mini trampoline is one of the best ways to support your lymphatic system among other benefits.
  3. Dry skin brushing.  This quick daily habit will boost your lymphatic drainage, give you great skin, reduce cellulite, and even help your body make more vitamin D.
  4. Essential Oils.  Some of my favorite essential oils for Lymphatic support are: Grapefruit, Cypress, Helichrysum, Lemongrass, Rosemary, Sandalwood, and Myrtle from Be Young essential oils.
  5. Sweating.  Way more than getting your sweat on in the gym; infrared saunas release stored toxins seven times more efficiently than traditional saunas.  They help release toxins from organs and tissues and get your lymphatic system going. Our friends next-door at Refresh Wellness can help you start sweating more!
  6. Chi Machine.  At Luminosity, we have a Chi machine in our self serve therapy room that stimulates oxygenation and movement to help get the lymphatic fluid moving and flush out toxins.

On Sunday, October 21, I will be sharing simple ways to use detox baths, essential oils, herbs, homeopathics and more to further these efforts at the special Women’s Day I am creating.  It will be a day of refreshing, pampering and empowerment for breast and uterine health.  I hope you can join me!

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