Guest post written by Britany Ochalek, an Authentic Health client.
I’ve been a client at Authentic Health for just over a year. My journey with Brenda has taken me to some places I didn’t think of ever going and to some places I never thought it would.
Places like cupping.
But my journey has been a great one, even when traveling to the unexpected. So I want to share my unexpected journey down the path of cupping with you, in case your health journey is taking you to a similar place.
Where it Began
My health journey, like many, did not start off with a cupping session. It started with a concern that I was losing too much hair too frequently, I was getting frequent bouts of bloating seemingly out of nowhere and a worry that my decision to cut meat out of my diet was leaving me deficient in various nutrients.
My first meeting with Brenda at Authentic Health was a whirlwind of knowledge about all my body systems and we went through quite an extensive list of health and wellness questions.
I was sent home to complete a bioenergetic wellness scan. I was provided a test kit to collect samples of my hair and saliva. Once completed, I used the prepaid mailing envelope to forward my samples to the testing site.
My hair and saliva samples underwent dozens of tests and from those results, Brenda provided me with a very thorough report, personalized for me.
The testing looked at 14 body systems unveiling how stressed or healthy my systems were. The report listed what toxins were found, what nutrients I was missing, and so on. One of the findings in my report was my lymph system was not as well functioning as the rest and lymphatic drainage was something that would benefit me greatly.
The Lymphatic System
Unlike the circulatory system, the lymphatic system does not have a major muscle to help circulate the clear fluid that makes up the lymph system.
This clear, watery fluid is collected by moving through a network of tissues, vessels, and organs collecting excess fluid from these areas and pushing it along until it’s returned to the bloodstream.
Your lymphatic system has several key roles:
- Maintaining fluid levels in your body
- Absorbing fats from the digestive tract
- Protecting your body against bacteria, viruses, and other invaders
- Transporting and removing waste products and abnormal cells
Our lymphatic systems are doing a lot of work, every single day. But we can give it a little boost with lymphatic drainage techniques to keep us healthy.
Sometimes when the cardiovascular system sends blood to your tissues and organs, extra fluid gets left behind. Now, this is where the lymphatic system comes in, and normally these extra fluids get picked up.
However, this isn’t always the case. Our lymph nodes can get stuck or blocked from moving on. Since our lymph nodes help clear toxins, germs, and other bad actors from the body, when they get stuck, so do those toxins.
This causes all sorts of discomfort and issues, from simple swelling to colds and more.
Lymphatic drainage techniques help to free these stuck lymph nodes and toxins along with them to finally release from the body.
There are many types of techniques you can use to help invite movement back into your lymphatic system, these can include things like dry brushing, massage, and of course cupping.
Cupping for Lymphatic Drainage
And this is where my story picks back up. I chose to try cupping for lymphatic drainage.
Authentic Health offers cupping, which can be used for so many ailments, including helping rid your body of a cold!
But before I digress into all the ways cupping can benefit the body, I will focus on how it helped me and how it can help others who need lymphatic drainage.
My session was with Sasha, a very warm, welcoming, and incredibly knowledgeable practitioner. He has studied many different types of modalities but has chosen cupping as his specialty for lymphatic drainage.
Cupping for lymphatic drainage is about impacting the fluid dynamics in the areas of your body that are populated by lymph nodes, places like the armpits, sides of the body, and groin areas.
Using cupping allows the practitioner to “dredge” out the lymph nodes that are lodged deep in body tissue. The cups help open up the layer between your skin and muscles, called sinew, which brings movement back into the area with blood flow. This allows the system to move properly again.
My session started with about 10 minutes of introductions. Sasha asked me a handful of questions about how my body was feeling, areas of particular concern, and explained how the cupping session would work.
I, in turn, asked several questions and with each one I threw at Sasha, he answered thoroughly and kindly.
Once I was on the table, the session took about half an hour. There are several main areas of the body where lymph nodes get clustered, the armpits and groin area are the two biggest. We focused a lot around the armpit and side of my body to help release the blockages.
Sasha used two different size cups during our session. The smaller cups were focused around my armpit area and the larger cups were used to cover my back. The size and number of cups used largely depend on the area being worked.
Over the 30-minute session, Sasha did a combination of long soothing strokes with the cups and his hands, working to loosen my very tight back. He then let the cups sit in various places on my back and near my armpits to help bring those stuck lymph nodes to the surface.
By the time the session was complete I was feeling loose, quite a bit more nimble and energized.
I didn’t suffer much bruising, one of the side effects, and was only slightly sore the next day. I drank a lot of water post-session to help flush all the loose toxins out.
As someone who has a hard time adding new routines, like a dry-brushing session at home, I will be back for more cupping sessions to help with lymphatic drainage.
If you have been curious about how cupping can help you, whether it’s for lymphatic drainage or another issue, I would highly recommend speaking with Brenda and Sasha about how cupping can help.