SHA Magazine Health & Beauty

Lymphatic drainage: impact on weight loss and health benefits

SHA Wellness Clinic
September 12, 2023

Lymphatic drainage works like the reset you need to regain energy and vitality. It is performed by a professional with good hands who, through gentle, slow and balanced maneuvers and movements, boosts lymph circulation, and reduces swelling and fluid retention.

The lymphatic system is closely related to the immune system. This explains why lymphatic drainage clearly improves our overall state of health and has a sedative effect on our nervous system, resulting in a pleasant feeling of relaxation and well-being.

The lymphatic system is similar to an aqueduct. It is a series of ducts that run parallel to the circulatory system. Instead of blood, lymph (a whitish liquid that transports waste substances) runs through these ducts. In our body, there is a constant mobilisation of liquids that must be kept in balance to ensure proper nutrition of the cells and tissues.

The main function of lymph is to transport fluid and waste substances to the circulatory system for effective elimination by the body. If the lymphatic system is not able to clear these areas, a slowing of the lymphatic flow can lead to several problems, including cellulite and fluid retention.

Lymphatic drainage maneuvers stimulate the movement of the lymph and achieve a correct elimination of all the waste deposited in the tissues. In our body, this process results in a reduction of the volume and perimeter of the abdomen and thighs, in the elimination of liquids and a loss of body weight. The most frequent areas where it is applied are the legs, buttocks, and abdomen.

This massage can also improve venous return in people with tired, swollen legs or with varicose veins. Although lymphatic drainage is a therapy with proven benefits, its effectiveness is enhanced by following a routine of healthy lifestyle habits, for example: walking 30 minutes a day, not wearing tight clothing, and eating a diet rich in fruit and vegetables.

Lymphatic drainage should be done by a professional with specific training in this type of therapy, which involves making movements with a specific rhythm and pressure to avoid rupturing the lymphatic vessels and to stimulate and facilitate the passage of lymph through the circulatory system. A qualified practitioner knows how to correctly use the techniques and do the maneuvers, which may include circular movements with the fingers, circles with the thumb, and pumping movements.

Multiple lymphatic drainage sessions are usually needed to achieve the desired results, and it is recommended that the therapy is combined with a balanced diet and moderate physical exercise on a daily basis.

Lymphatic drainage can be used as an adjunct to clinical therapies to treat traumatic oedema or lymphatic complications following surgery and also in rehabilitation and sports medicine to reduce pain in musculoskeletal conditions involving inflammation.

The main benefits of lymphatic drainage include reducing swelling and fluid retention. It is useful in combating cellulite, as it promotes the elimination of liquids, improving the appearance of orange peel skin. It also improves blood circulation, as this therapy stimulates microcirculation and reduces the feeling of heavy legs and the appearance of spider veins. Finally, it eliminates toxins and oxygenates tissues.

Another benefit that patients notice after several sessions of this therapy is improved self-esteem. By reducing fluid retention, our body is shaped, we recover our figure, and we gain confidence. We like ourselves much more than we did before we were treated by the physiotherapist.


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