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Sick Again? It Might Be Due To Your Poor Lymphatic System

Sick Again? It Might Be Due To Your Poor Lymphatic System

Do you always seem to be sick with the sniffles, sneezing, runny nose, or cough? Ever had a virus when nobody else around you is sick? Being sick can be miserable. It’s important to get to the bottom of what makes you sick to avoid it in the future.

Chances are, you think your illnesses are related to allergies, viruses, or bacteria. While you might be right, the actual root of getting sick could be due to something often overlooked. You might actually have poor lymphatic health.

The Connection Between Poor Lymphatic Health and Getting Sick

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    The body’s lymphatic system is made up of tissues and organs that help eliminate toxins and waste. This system helps to transport lymph, a white blood cell filled fluid, through the body. In addition, lymph nodes produce extra white blood cells to fight off infections. Lymph nodes are located in the armpits, groin, and near the lungs and heart. In addition, your body’s spleen, tonsils, adenoids, appendix, and bone marrow produce white blood cells.

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    The lymphatic system, like any other biological system, can become overwhelmed and overworked due to an overabundance of toxins. When this happens, the whole system is backed up. This makes it hard for the lymph fluid to make its way around the body. When lymph cannot reach all of the body’s cells, the cells are unable to eliminate waste. This buildup of waste can lead to inflammation, fatigue, infection, and disease.

    Lifestyle Choices that Result in a Poor Lymphatic System

    So, now you know what the lymphatic system does and how its poor health can lead to your poor health. But how does the lymphatic system become congested? Lifestyle choices can have a drastic effect on the health of the lymphatic system.

    Here is a list of some lifestyle choices that result in a congested lymphatic system and poor health:

    1. A Sedentary Lifestyle

    Leading a sedentary lifestyle, one with little to no movement, creates obstacles for lymph movement. During exercise, the lymphatic system regulates tissue volume and pressure by returning fluids to the cardiovascular system. Lymphocyte production also increases when exercising.

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    Make sure to get as much exercise as often. Even something as simple as taking the stairs instead of the elevator can help keep your lymphatic system flowing.

    2. Dehydration

    Being dehydrated is another factor that can reduce the effectiveness of the lymphatic system and stagnate the lymph flow. A commonly accepted recommendation for daily water intake is 64 ounces. Without this, the body is unable to flush out waste and toxins.

    Try increasing your water intake to stay hydrated. You can do this by drinking water, unsweetened herbal teas, or by eating fruits (especially watermelon).

    3. An Unhealthy Diet

    Do you grab a bag of chips instead of an apple when you’re hungry? Exposing your body to processed, high fat foods can result in decreased lymphatic function. This decreased function causes increased infections. Try eating healthier options like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to encourage lymphatic activity.

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    4. Stress or Depression

    Stress and depression produce the stress hormone, cortisol in the body. An excess of this hormone can cause sluggish activity in the lymphatic system. Additionally, stress and depression have been linked to some types of cancer. This link is thought to occur because repetitive stress response impairs the lymphatic response.

    5. Digestive Problems

    Constant problems with upset stomach, diarrhea, and constipation can interfere with the lymphatic system as well. Diarrhea, for example, may cause the body to lose fluids and become dehydrated, leading to a loss of lymphocytes.

    To avoid this problem, try to regulate your digestive track. You can achieve this by eating a healthy, balanced diet and increasing your intake of probiotics. Probiotics can be found in yogurt.

    6. Processed Chemicals

    Being exposed to man-made chemicals can be particularly dangerous for lymphatic system health. Products like plastics, cans, pesticides, and scented hygiene products may introduce chemicals like BPA and parabens into the body. These chemicals may be difficult for the lymphatic system to expel. The extra work needed to eliminate these toxins may slow down lymph flow and lead to other illnesses or infections.

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    Conclusion

    Now that you have an idea of the lifestyle choices that can negatively influence your lymphatic system health, you can start making some changes. Focus on living a healthier lifestyle and keeping your lymph flowing freely. Changing some very small things in your life can make a big difference in your health.

    Featured photo credit: Mizianitka via pixabay.com

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    Amber Pariona

    EFL Teacher, Lifehack Writer, English/Spanish Translator, MPA

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    Last Updated on September 18, 2020

    7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

    7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

    Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

    Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

    1. Exercise Daily

    It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

    If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

    Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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    If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

    2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

    Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

    One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

    This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

    3. Acknowledge Your Limits

    Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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    Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

    Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

    4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

    Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

    The basic nutritional advice includes:

    • Eat unprocessed foods
    • Eat more veggies
    • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
    • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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    Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

      5. Watch Out for Travel

      Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

      This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

      If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

      6. Start Slow

      Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

      If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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      7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

      Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

      My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

      If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

      I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

      Final Thoughts

      Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

      Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

      More Tips on Getting in Shape

      Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

      Reference

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