a scientific model of the lymph system

Lymph System Detox

Jane Eklund
This content originally appeared on 

The lymphatic system is a key player in fighting infection and promoting immunity--which means it's a no-brainer that we should work to keep our lymph systems functioning smoothly and effectively. Want to kick-start your lymph circulation? Herbs can help.

What is the Lymph System?

The lymphatic system is a web of organs plus lymph nodes, ducts, and vessels that produce lymph and carry it from tissues to the bloodstream.

What does The Lymphatic System do?

The lymph system promotes liver function and immune function, and helps the body remove toxins from cells, organs, and tissues.

What is Lymph Fluid?

Lymph is a fluid that contains white blood cells.

While blood is pumped by the heart through the circulatory system, toxins and lymph are moved via muscles--through movement, breathing, and intestinal activity.

What do Lymph Nodes Do?

Lymph nodes filter the lymph, removing toxins like bacteria and cancer cells, and they make more white blood cells to fight off infection.

Caring for Your Lymph System

A strong lymph system helps prevent illness and disease, so it makes sense to keep yours in tip-top condition.

Herbs to Cleanse the Lymph System

Give your lymph system a cleanse with herbs in the form of teas, supplements, and topical compresses; some can even be tossed into your dinner. Here are some recommendations.

  • Astragalus

    Cleanses the lymph and, combined with echinacea, eases swelling and congestion.

  • Echinacea

    An anti-inflammatory that enhances the immune system.

  • Dandelion

    A detoxifying agent that clears built-up waste from the lymph system.

  • Devil's Claw

    Stimulates the lymph system to boost draining, detox, and cleansing.

  • Wild Indigo Root

    Increases lymph flow and helps cleanse the lymphatic system and reduce glandular swelling.

  • Goldenseal

    An anti-inflammatory that promotes lymph system detox.

  • Burdock

    A blood and lymph purifier that enhances liver, kidneys, digestion, and endocrine and lymphatic systems.

  • Licorice Root

    A broad-spectrum, gentle detox agent.

  • Edible Antioxidants

    These can spice up your meals--and give your lymphatic system an antioxidant boost at the same time!

    • Cilantro
    • Parsley
    • Ginger
    • Turmeric
    • Garlic
    • Oregano

Complementary Measures

Combine your herbal detox with other techniques for stimulating the lymph system. Here are a few to try.

  • Lifestyle Changes

    • Eat a healthy diet.
    • Get plenty of sleep.
    • Take measures to keep stress down
  • Exercise

    Moving your body encourages your lymph system to move, too, and to push toxins out. We recommended these techniques:

    • swimming
    • yoga
    • running
    • bouncing exercises:
      • jumping on a trampoline
      • skipping rope
      • doing squats
  • Massage and Foam Rolling

    Treat yourself to a massage, or use a foam roller to give yourself one. It's a great way to stimulate circulation and lymphatic flow while you relax.

  • Dry Brushing

    Use a natural bristle brush, like a shower brush, to brush your dry skin. That will stimulate blood and lymph flow. Move the brush toward the heart.

  • Hydration

    Drink plenty of water to flush out toxins.

  • Taking Deep Breaths

    Create pumping action to keep the lymph system moving by breathing deeply.

Click to See Our Sources

"7 ways to maintain a strong lymphatic system" by Tash Penman, www.HolisticHealthHerbalist.com

"10 ways to cleanse a clogged lymphatic system," https://SynergyHealthAssociates.com

"Herbs that promote lymphatic drainage," https://HerbalismRoots.com, 10/12/14

"How to detoxify and heal the lymphatic system," Cybermed Life News, https://CyberMedLife.eu

"Lymph system," MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia, https://MedlinePlus.gov, 6/28/18

"Lymphatic system: How to make it strong & effective" by Jillian Levy, https://DrAxe.com, 10/24/15