Breast Health & Lymphatic Drainage

Originally publish 2002 written by Loretta T Friedman, RN,MS,DC,CCN,CNS,DACBN,DCBCNThe question is no longer “Am I Toxic?”, but rather “How Toxic Am I?” Unfortunately, we live in an extremely noxious world today. The foods we eat are full of pesticides, the water we drink rates 3/ppm for chlorine. If this was pool water, the manufacturer would tell you not to swim in it. The air we breathe is full of microscopic particles that are all affecting our health and well being. We test 100% positive for at least half dozen lethal compounds in our adipose tissue. 1According to the American Cancer Society, one in two men and one in three women will develop some kind of cancer in his or her lifetime. 2 Our ill health is directly related to the assaults we face everyday. The increasing stress and rise in hormonal levels are all depleting our immune systems. We no longer get a cold or flu for a few days. We get sick for 3-4 weeks at a time. We start feeling better and then relapse. An important factor in maintaining a healthy immune system is an efficient lymphatic system, yet nowhere in the health community is anyone paying specific attention to it.The lymphatic system is the other circulatory system. It is a vital part of our circulatory system. It manages elimination of toxins from our body. It functions as the body’s primary immune defense and it is the body’s primary system for waste elimination through the colon. It contains more than 600 “collection sites” called lymph nodes and has a network of connecting vessels more extensive than the venous system. Our lymphatic system is primarily responsible for carrying disease fighting material to cells attacked by germs transporting the dead germs away and supplying protein rich plasma fluid back to the heart. When the system is blocked we become defenseless against attacks by fungi and bacteria because infection-fighting material is prevented from destroying germs. Additionally, cell nourishing material is prevented from reaching the bloodstream. The end result is that germs grow, our blood loses necessary protein, and infectious diseases could potentially affect you.Most chronic disease problems occur at the junction of lymph vessels, or lymph nodes. You can feel lymph nodes by pressing underneath the arms, just below the collarbone, abdomen, or in the crease between the thigh and the pelvic area. There are 160 lymph nodes located in the face and neck region and over 300 lymph nodes in the trunk of the body. When touching these areas, most people feel small lumps and bumps and sometimes pain. The bumps and pain are symptomatic of blocked lymph nodes. Blocked lymph nodes indicate a breakdown in the mechanical functioning of the lymph system and as a result, a breakdown in your immune system.Women have large reservoirs of lymph fluid in their body, which are called breasts. The lymph nodes in the axilla (under the arms) and breast tissue are probably the most palpable nodes in the trunk region.So imagine you are bombarded with all these toxic materials we spoke about earlier.“For the first time in the history of the world, every human being is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals from the moment of conception until death. In the less than two decades of their use, the synthetic pesticides have been so thoroughly distributed throughout the animate and inanimate world that they occur virtually everywhere” 3Toxins carry electrical charges with them, some are electrons, others protons. These electrical changes are sometimes referred to as free radicals. Free radicals attach themselves to the neutral lymph fluid. This attachment causes stagnation and pooling of lymph fluid in the nodes. This is what is felt with palpation. This stagnation and pooling causes disease and toxic buildup in the tissues, sometimes referred to as lymphedema.Do you wonder why your breasts are sore and achy even if you don’t have your period? When your estrogen levels rise, as in the few days prior to menstruation, it will get even worse. This is your lymph system talking to you. It’s telling you it’s time to clean up your act and relieve these reservoirs of that standing fluid.The risk is even higher for those who have had a nymph node removed in combination with radiation to the area. Many patients have subtle clues that they are in early stages of lymphedema, but they are not knowledgeable of the signs. Individuals may have a subtle fullness in the limb, a ring or shoe that is too tight, warmth, reddish tinge or blotchiness to the skin, tingling in the hands and fingers, an infection slow to heal, joint pain, or reduced range of motion. The literature states that lymphedema can occur many years after radiation treatment has been given. A slight trauma, an infection, having your blood pressure taken, or receiving a flu shot in the affected limb can trigger an occurrence of lymph- edema for those at high risk. 4,5All is not lost, there is help and there is a solution. Traditional methods of manual lymphatic stimulation have proven to be minimally effective, but there is a better way. A tool called the Lymph-Biologicsä and a technique called lymphatic drainage are designed to help get better results in less time with less stress. Lymph-Biologicsä is a tool that stimulates the neuromuscular systems directly and possesses many advantages. Lymph-Biologicsä concentrates on the process of transport. It can affect the deeper areas of concern like the thoracic duct and the cisterna chyli, which lie beneath the sternum, and cannot be affected by hands on work alone. The three part wave of the Lymph-Biologicsä and it’s oscillating frequency are able to reach these areas and de-congest them, allowing free flow of lymph and the elimination of toxins through the colon. The Lymph-Biologicsä is able to safely remove blockages so that the nodes are no longer swollen and painful. How much healthier will your immune system be when it is able to function as normal as possible? Removing environmental toxins which contribute to cancers can be achieved.Not to be overlooked is the valuable benefit of the Lymph-Biologicsä in stressed or injured muscle cases, which reduces the danger of secondary injury by excess lymph buildup. It keeps fluid moving rather than stagnating, thereby reducing swelling and edema. In the post-surgical setting, this can facilitate the transportation of wastes from the trauma site, promoting faster healing.I invite you to experience the advantages lymphatic de-congestive therapy can offer. Who would not benefit by having a more efficient immune system?GENERAL TEXTS and REFERENCES
  1. US EPA National Adipose Tissue Survey, 1982
  2. American Cancer Society, 19 West 56th Street, NYC 10019-3984
  3. Rachel Carson, Silent Spring, 1962
  4. Swirsky, J. and D.S. Nannery, Coping with Lymph edema, Garden City Park, New York: Avery City publishing Group, 1998
  5. Bunt, J. and G. White, Lymph edema: A Breast Cancer Patient Guide to Prevention and Healing, Alameda, CA: Hunter House Publishers, 1999.

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