Did you know your body's natural defense system can help you to release phlegm? This tip comes in handy this time of year when the cold and flu season is upon us. However you need not necessarily be sick to have lots of phlegm in your body. Pregnant? Then you can fully relate. Allergy sufferers: This is for you also!
This natural technique places the body into a mild inversion, which encourages the body to release phlegm naturally.
What you need: 3 pillows
Prepare to lie down: You can lie down on a yoga mat or a bed if you are not comfortable on the floor.
If you are pregnant, you will lie down on your left side; everyone else should lie on their right side with the legs straight. Lying on the right helps the heart muscle to relax in your chest.
The arm should be straight up by your head on the side you are lying on. You can relax the opposite arm in front of your chest.
Stack your pillows: Place two stacked pillows under your feet. The last pillow should be placed under the right armpit; for pregnancy, this will be your left armpit.
*Note: See picture above
Relax: Stay in this position for five to fifteen minutes. You can repeat this several times a day. Put on some relaxing music or use the down time for meditation.
Why do inversions help release phlegm?
Gravity! Although this is not an inversion like headstand, it is still a mild inversion.
Water will always flow to the center of the earth. In the body, it will flow to its lowest point.
Think of doing a headstand. Stomach acid is stopped from moving into the esophagus because there is a flap at the top of the stomach to prevent the stomach acids (water) from flowing upwards; if there was no flap, the esophagus would be burned or eaten by the acid, leaving a large hole.
The nasal cavities do not have anything to stop them from draining which is why mucous (water) will flow downward, removing the excess.
Another way to understand it would be to take a bottle of water and turn it upside down. Gravity will obviously pull the water to its opposite end, similar to the body in this position.
Zero side effects. The best part about releasing phlegm naturally, using this mild inversion is that you will only experience positive benefits. When you get up off of the floor, you will find your sinuses are clear, almost like magic!
Keep in mind the colour of your phlegm can tell you much about what is happening in your body. You may need to see a doctor also, especially if symptoms persist.
Tammy Lawrence-Cymbalisty is the owner of TLC Services A Certified Yoga Teacher, HypnoBirthing Practitioner and Reiki Master. She is the Author of How to be Soul Strong: a user's guide to life on planet earth which can be found at http://www.howtobesoulstrong.com