I got a great question from a reader a couple days ago--
here's what Christel writes:
May I ask that you write about the spleen -- it seems
spleen deficiency is a major cause for many problems - but
no western educated doctor seems interested in checking the
Please tell us about the functioning of the spleen.
Thanks for all.
SB: Christel, I'm happy to talk about the "mysterious"
The spleen is an organ about the size of your fist and
sits on the left side of your body, under the rib cage.
It's part of the lymphatic system.
Now if you're like most people, you know of the lymphatic
system (especially when you have swollen glands) but you're
not 100% sure what it does.
So first here's a very brief biology lesson about the
Your lymphatic system is like a staff of maids and
housekeepers inside your body.
This staff is made up of countless nodes and glands, the
thymus gland, the thoracic duct, the spleen, bone marrow,
tonsils and miles of lymphatic vessels.
These lymphatic vessels contain 3 times more lymph fluid
than blood--that alone should tell you how important the
lymphatic system is.
The maids and housekeepers do their job by filtering and
purifying your bloodstream, cleansing wastes from your
tissues, organs and 100 trillion cells, and searching out
and destroying any harmful invaders that might enter your
Then they gather the wastes and, just like dumping dirty
dishwater down the sink, they bring the wastes to one of
your body's four "exits"--the lungs, skin, bladder and
bowels--for elimination from your body.
The lymphatic system is truly the heart of the immune
system because of its vital role in keeping your body clean
and destroying dangerous substances and antigens.
Now on to the spleen.
Your spleen has many important functions including:
* Filtering out and destroying old and damaged blood cells
* Helping to prevent infection by producing white blood
cells (called lymphocytes) that act as a first line of
defense against invading viruses, bacteria and other
* Storing blood and platelets (the cells that help your
* Acting as an intermediary between your immune system and
As you can see, your spleen is not something you want to
be stressed or not working right. Your state of health
depends heavily on your body's ability to fight infections,
and your spleen plays a vital role in that process.
Sometimes the spleen can become enlarged, which
compromises the functioning of your lymphatic system.
One of the most common causes of an enlarged spleen is
infectious mononucleosis ("mono"), but it can be caused by
these factors as well:
- Bacterial infections, such as syphilis or an infection
of your heart's inner lining (endocarditis)
- Parasitic infections, such as malaria
- Cirrhosis and other diseases of the liver
- Hemolytic anemia - a condition characterized by
premature destruction of red blood cells
- Blood cancers, such as leukemia and Hodgkin's disease
- Acidity in the body
As your spleen gets larger, it begins to mess up and
filter out the good, normal red blood cells as well as
abnormal ones. This reduces the number of healthy cells in
It also traps too many platelets. Eventually, the excess
blood cells and platelets can clog up your spleen, further
interfering with its normal functioning.
Another risk with an enlarged spleen is possible rupture.
A ruptured spleen can cause life-threatening bleeding into
your abdominal cavity, and the release of toxic wastes
throughout your body.
Spleen and Acidity
Like all of your organs, your spleen is designed to
function best in an alkaline environment.
When your body is acidic, you place an impossible burden
on the spleen to do its job, and it can eventually become
enlarged or simply slow way down.
A poorly functioning spleen can reduce the number of
healthy red blood cells, platelets and white cells in your
bloodstream, so you can develop anemia or increased
You also become susceptible to frequent, dangerous, or
even life-threatening infections.
Keep Your Spleen Alkaline
Good spleen health is yet another great reason to keep
your body as alkaline as possible. ALL of your organs work
best when your body is alkaline, and the spleen is no
<Are you starting to see a recurring theme here? I hope so.>
If you want to enjoy any measure of good health, live pain-
free with little or no need for medications and enjoy life
well into your golden years, you must commit to eating to
minimize the acidity in your body.
It's not a question of if...you must do this to have good
Your body is alkaline by design, and the best way to keep
it alkaline is to eat mainly alkaline foods (at least 60-
70%) and correctly combine all of your meals.