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Gut Health and its relation to the body's Lymphatic System

Updated: Feb 23, 2019

Did you know that the Lymphatic system is part of the vascular system and an important part of the immune system? It actually carries a clear fluid called lymph directionally towards the heart all through a large network of lymphatic vessels.

This system is made up of the tissues and organs that help store and build cells that fight off disease. There are three main functions of the Lymphatic System in your body. The first function is to produce immunity fighting cells (these cells are your plasma cells). The second function is the removal of excess fluids from body tissues (without this function our body tissues would swell up). The third function is the absorption of fatty acids and the transportation of fat to the circulatory system.

Another major health concern within your body’s function is your ‘Gut Health’. This is a newer term in the medical world and refers to your GI tract. This includes your mouth, esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines, and anus. Having good gut health allows your body to have a strong immune system.

You might be thinking, how are these two even related? If you think about it, all your intestines are made up of tissues. The Lymphatic System is directly related to fat absorption. When there is a problem with your Lymphatic System, you may not be able to receive all the nutrients your body needs.

Here are a couple ways in improve your Gut Health:

Eat More Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens all contain prebiotics,vitamins, and minerals that are all very important in maintaining a healthy gut. Increasing your vegetable intake also brings more fiber into your diet.

Eat Slowly

This allows for full absorption of nutrients that are in your food and this promotes full digestion of all food. It also makes you less likely to overeat which is very important in order to not gain weight.

Drink Lots of Water

Drinking a lot of water has been proven to benefit the lining of your intestines and helps boost your metabolism.

Making these small changes to your daily routine and lifestyle can help benefit you for many, many years to come.

Fun Facts About The Lymphatic System --

  • The lymphatic system is our body’s ‘sewerage system’.

  • It maintains fluid levels in our body tissues by removing all fluids that leak out of our blood vessels.

  • The lymphatic system is important for the optimal functioning of our general and - specific immune responses.

  • The lymph nodes monitor the lymph flowing into them and produce cells and antibodies which protect our body from infection and disease.

  • The spleen and thymus are lymphatic organs that monitor the blood and detect and respond to pathogens and malignant cells.

  • The lymphatic system plays an important role in the absorption of fats from the intestine.

  • When the lymphatic system is not formed well or has been damaged by surgery, radiotherapy or tissue damage, a swelling of a part of the body may occur (most commonly the legs or arms). When this swelling lasts more than about three months it is called lymphoedema.

  • When it’s not functioning well the lymphatic system may have a role in obesity, Crohn’s disease and other disorders.

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