Food and Exercise programs designed for busy lifestyles
The health benefits of dry skin brushing
by: Carol Takakura
Are you Healthy Inside and Out? -Dry Skin Brushing
Our skin is the largest organ of absorption and elimination. Many people exfoliate the skin on their faces on a regular basis, but the fact is that your whole body can benefit from thorough and regular exfoliation. Skin gets clogged up with toxins and dead cells cannot function properly because the toxins are not being eliminated. It is estimated that the skin eliminates over one pound of waste per day, dry skin brushing is an excellent routine to add to your day. This is even more prevalent, if you are working toward becoming healthy inside and out. Changing your Diet, Detoxing, Increasing Exercise and mediation and reducing stress are all wonderful ways to get to your best health, but these are not the only ways that count. We do all these activities and yet forget an important puzzle piece. How the body is to fully release those toxins we sent packing by our improved self-care habits? This is where dry brushing becomes comes in.
Here are some of the important reasons to incorporate skin brushing into your daily routine.
Circulation -The skin receives one third of all the blood circulated through the body. Dry brushing improves circulation. By increasing the circulation to the skin, you are encouraging your body to discharge metabolic waste.
Stimulation of hormones -Dry brushing stimulates the hormone and oil glands, thus helping all of the body systems perform at peak efficiency. When improperly maintained, the elimination duties of the skin are forced upon the kidneys
Firming the skin– Dry brushing helps reduce cellulite. Toxins are often trapped in the subcutaneous later of fat cells just beneath the skin which contributes to cellulite. Brushing helps your skin respire by eliminating clogged pores. When you brush, the pores of your skin open allowing your skin to absorb nutrients and eliminate toxins.
Dry skin brushing tips
• You will need a brush with soft natural bristles. Do not use synthetic bristles. My go to is most times Amazon however you can also look to I-herb.com or Follow Your Heart Market (Canoga park) or Whole Foods Market.. $ -Begins at about 10.00. Look for a brush with a long handle for easier reach to your back.
• Always dry brush your dry body before you shower or bathe because you will want to wash off the impurities from the skin as a result of the brushing action. The brush and your skin should be dry.
• Use light pressure in areas where the skin is thin and harder pressure on places like the soles of the feet. Don’t overdo it, your skin is not tile or grout but a living organ!
• Ideally you want to brush from toes to neck, most of the lymph in your body drains to a central area near your collar bone. Brush the entire body, including your back, skipping your face and scalp. Use long sweeping strokes starting from the bottom of your feet upwards, and from the hands towards the shoulders, and on the torso in an upward direction to help drain the lymph back towards your heart. Exception!!!- When you are brushing your stomach, apply clockwise brushing movements.
Note: Stroking away from your heart can put extra pressure on the valves within the veins and lymph vessels and over time may lead to ruptured vessels and varicose veins.
• Slight flushing of the skin is normal, due to increased circulation. The skin should not be red or irritated, if it is you’re using too much pressure.
• The entire process should only take two to five minutes. Preferably dry brush first thing in the morning. If you are feeling ill, increasing the treatments to twice a day can be beneficial.
The skin is the last organ to receive nutrients in the body, yet the first to show signs of imbalance or deficiency.
The skin is known also as our third kidney
Dry skin can be a first indicator of detoxification; therefore it’s good to keep the process going by daily which removes dead skin cells. If not done regularly, dead skin cells build up, leading to eczema, psoriasis and dandruff, in addition to blocking the skin’s regular excretions like sweat.
Dry skin brushing may reduce duration of infection and accelerate the clearing of toxins. It helps support the immune system during treatments for cancer and other chronic illnesses (but always check with your health care provider).
After several days of dry brushing, sometimes you may notice a gelatinous mucoid material in your stools. This is a normal sign that the intestinal tract is renewing itself.
Dry brushing tones the muscles. Dry skin brushing helps muscle tone by stimulating the nerve endings which causes the individual muscle fibers to activate and move. This is a great technique for those with limited mobility.
Increased blood flow begins entering the areas brushed and you will experience an increase in electromagnetic energy that helps you to feel energized and invigorated. By activating the circulation you also help prevent varicose veins.
For added benefits and notes for you to consider:
- Finish up with your regular shower and end with three hot and cold cycles. That means turning on the water as hot as you can take it for several seconds, then as cold as you can handle it, then hot, then cold for three cycles. End with either hot or cold. This will further invigorate the skin and stimulate blood circulation, bringing more blood to the outer layers of the epidermis. Or try a bath with Epsom salts or mineral-rich salts which also help encourage detoxification.
- After getting out of the shower, dry off vigorously and massage your skin with pure plant oils such as jojoba, avocado, apricot, almond, sesame, coconut or cocoa butter.
- Tap your brush over a trashcan to shake off dead skin cells. Each person should have their own dry brush, just like a toothbrush! Keep your brush in a dry area away from steam and potential mildew. If you do wash your brush with soap and warm water, rinse well and make sure it is thoroughly dried in a sunny area before use.