Community Supported Herbalism
Lymphatic System and Heart Detox
Prepared by Amber Friedman
The third basket of the program pulls it all together.
The focus this month is on moving things around in your body and then clearing all that no longer serves you. The chosen systems of the body to clear in this package are the lymphatic system and the heart. It is the season of heart medicine right now as the roses are blooming all around you, I offer you to stop and smell them.
ON ROSES –
‘Wild rose softens the areas that we tense to protect ourselves, unraveling emotional tension patterns that get locked in the body. Rose naturally works in places where ‘flow’ is impeded.’ ‘… Regardless, that’s what rose brings to the body: a softness, a flow. And with that softness, the world, held at bay by all that tension and all that protection, can finally flow in– we can interact with the world around us, experience it through our senses.
With trauma, we grow up not really able to trust the world around us, and not really able to trust ourselves either. This creates a deep underlying sense of fear that comes out in lots of ways (panic attacks, anxiety, depression being the most common). It doesn’t even need to be the kinds of trauma that most people think of as deep trauma. Losing our favorite teddy bear at just the right age for it to damage you can damage you, and our own traumas are our own. But when we do, you create this low-level underlying tension, like we’re constantly bracing for the next blow. This tension makes us alert, but at a cost, because it uses a LOT of energy and we end up feeling unsafe all the time. And rose, gently, patiently, softens it. At its core, rose is a medicine of deep trust, deep vulnerability and deep softening—allowing us to deeply trust ourselves and our bodies, and to trust the world around us. As a result, we can reach out and touch the world around us, but even more importantly, let it in to touch us back.’ Rebecca Altman on Roses
‘Rose adores poetry, but despite popular belief, she simply can’t countenance mushy love. Roses know that to experience love in full, you need to be a strong vessel while at the same time cracking open. A contradiction? No more a contradiction than flowers and thorns murmurs Rose. Rose reminds you to embrace dualities and say “both/and” instead of “either/or”. – From The Illustrated Herbiary by Maia Toll
On the Lymphatic System –
‘Your lymphatic system and skin are separate yet closely interconnected detoxification organs, and many of the therapies that work for one also aid the other. The lymphatic system is an intricate network of tiny lymphatic vessels and groups of nodes that lie alongside your circulatory system, cleaning the interstitial fluid in your body and dumping the waste into your bloodstream for removal. It is also home to a variety of immune cells and assists in the transportation of fatty acids. Nothing “pumps” the lymph system, so it moves very slowly in one direction (thanks to a system of valves) as muscles outside the system press against the vessels. Gentle movement, light lymphatic massage, and skin brushing all encourage better lymph movement, as do certain lymph-moving herbs, or lymphagogues.’ from Body Into Balance by Maria Noel Groves.
- Hawthorn, Motherwort, Holy Basil, Roses, Passionflower, Hibiscus, Rooibos, Yarrow
- Red Clover, Calendula, Cleavers, Alder, Red Root, Echinacea, Burdock, Chickweed