Here’s an easy, invigorating way to start the day: dry skin brushing.
The skin is our largest organ of elimination, sometimes called the third kidney because of its role in detoxifying the body. Toxins exit the body through the pores by sweating, which is why aerobic exercise, saunas, and steam baths are good detoxifying aids. But it’s quite common for the skin to get clogged with cosmetics, dead skin cells or other metabolic wastes. If the skin isn’t breathing properly, additional stress is put on the liver and kidneys to detoxify.
Daily dry skin brushing, used for centuries by Scandinavians and Russians, is a simple technique that removes dead skin cells and helps keep the elimination channels open. It promotes circulation, stimulates the lymphatic system – a vital part of the body’s immune system, improves skin elasticity and tone, and generally energizes the whole body.
How to do it:
All you need is a natural bristle brush with a long handle and about 3 minutes or so. (Do not use a nylon bristle brush.) Small, softer natural bristle brushes are available for the face. Toxins build up during sleep so mornings, before taking a shower or getting dressed, are best for brushing. Brush gently at first to get used to the feel; in time your skin will become more resilient and you’ll want more vigorous brushing.
You can cover the whole body in any way you like; here’s just one example:
- Start from the feet to the legs, buttocks and arms using long upward strokes towards the heart.
- Use more circular strokes on the back, neck, hips and abdominal area.You can spend a little more time on places that might be tight or achy. Avoid brushing over bruises or irritated areas.
- If you have time, you can include your face. With the softer bristles, brush upward starting under the chin with small circular strokes.
If you do this each morning for a week or so, you’ll probably be hooked because, besides all the health benefits, dry skin brushing just feels good!