Boost Your Immune System in 15 Seconds: How To Thump Your Thymus

Boost Your Immune System: How To Thump Your Thymus

We’ve already discussed how your eyes can show the state of your adrenal glands and that your pulse can be used to find allergies. Let’s take a look another look into the amazing things that your body can do and learn how to boost its innate immunity.

The immune system is what protects our body from disease. When it’s not working properly, we’re subject to mass illnesses each winter – commonly called the cold and flu “season” -, chronic infections such as herpes and Epstein-Barr virus (mononucleosis), and cancer.

A yearly cold and flu epidemic is not a season folks.

To prevent and reverse these disease conditions, it’s important to build a strong immune system.

The Thymus Gland

Boost Your Immune System with This One Simple TrickBehind your sternum, or breastbone, sits the thymus gland.

It is part of the lymphatic immune system and is responsible for maturing infection-fighting white blood cells (T cells) made in our bone marrow.

‘Thumping your thymus’ is a method of gently tapping on the thymus gland to create vibrations that stimulate an increase in the maturation and release of white blood cells.

It has also been shown to slow down gland atrophy. The thymus gland begins to break down and shrink after puberty, and it’s been theorized that this happens in humans because we have lost the instinct to stimulate it regularly.

Learning from Gorillas

Think of the need to grasp or rub mid-chest during times of extreme stress or a gorilla who pounds his chest before entering a battle. Both situations call for stimulation of the thymus gland.

Other suggested benefits of thymus thumping also tie into the instinctual pounding of the chest.

There are many interesting articles about increased energy levels from thymus thumping. It’s a widely used practice with those who practice energy work.

Going completely off grid, another angle that goes way into alternative healing is the link with the ‘high heart’ chakra. One of the functions is to release fear.

These three ideas together makes a logical argument why a gorilla would thump his chest before going into battle – release of fear before engaging in battle, increased energy, and preparation of the immune system to deal with injuries.

How to Thump Your Thymus

Boost Your Immune System with This One Simple Trick - How to Thump Your Thymus

1. Take a couple of deep, relaxing breaths.

2. Using your fingertips or side of your fist, tap up and down about 2-3 inches along your sternum, between and above your mammary glands.

The thymus is located behind the third rib, but any vibrations along the length of the upper sternum will stimulate it.

3. Do this for 15-20 seconds and continue to take regular slow breaths.

4. Do 1-3 times a day or up to 4 during times of acute illness. (this recommendation is through my personal experience; anyone who practices energy work, please feel free to share your ideas in the comments!)


Quite unusual for me, but I don’t have reference materials to guide you to for further reading. This knowledge was gained through my training as a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner.

If you are into alternative health and know of any helpful text for further reading, please share in the comments!


Jennifer Nervo is a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, Reiki Master Practitioner & teacher, and Aromatherapist. Her focus is on digestive, nervous, and immune system dysfunction and the fields of functional nutrition & psychoneuroimmunology. She works with all conditions and diseases including environmental and food allergies, autoimmune diseases, multiple chemical sensitivity, diabetes, eczema, anxiety, weight loss as a symptom of dis-ease, and gut-brain disorders like autism.

When she’s not herding her small troupe of monkeys or seeing clients, her free time is packed with researching and perfecting new wellness techniques (her not-so-secret passion). Jennifer is currently a group leader for the newest class of Nutritional Therapy Practitioners out of Ann Arbor, MI, studying for the national board exam in holistic nutrition, and running a combined distance and brick and mortar practice in metro Detroit. She’s also a homeschooling suburbanite, foodie, and mama to two littles and a schnoodle.

80 thoughts on “Boost Your Immune System in 15 Seconds: How To Thump Your Thymus”

    • Great info……I would add, look up Inula…not many people know about is an amazing essential oil…. I mix it with Eucalyptus….in an inhaler and in a spray bottle…They do amazing things for me…My weak area is my lungs…..Never smoked..but mom, dad and x did..I added up 36 years of second hand smoke…. I run 3 miles (well did..foot issue I take my home made inhaler with me and no issue running..

    • I’ve had a bout with bronchitis that will not go away, read about Thymus thumping years ago, I laid in bed thumping my glands, and literally the next day, this yucky stuff is gone! Also I did some imagery of my white blood cells coming in and cleaning up the leftover bacteria. I never write on these blogs lol! But I am feeling very well today!

  • Learned about this technique through Donna Eden’s book Energy Medicine. She has a five minute energy routine to do daily that strengthens your body. I think there are YouTube videos too.

  • GOing to give this a try!!! I have had fibromyalgia for over 15 years. One of the first symptoms I noticed was a deep ache and sense of fatigue located at this spot. When I went to the doctors they checked my heart and said everything was fine and that I just deeded to relax. Kind of how most of the medical field has treated me over the last 15 years …..

    • I can sympathize with trying to see a doctor for a chronic illness. All my tests came out normal and there was never anything wrong no matter what symptoms I had. We are helpless no more Carol!

      If the area around your thymus is still sore, you can begin by rubbing the area instead of thumping until the area is no longer painful and then move to thumping as the congestion releases over time.

      Keep at this daily for a few weeks and pay attention to how you feel. I have a feeling that this will be helpful for you.

  • Is this ok to do on kids – I am determined to try extra hard this year to keep our immune systems in good shape through the winter months – we don’t get sick often, but not getting sick at all would be even better :-).

  • When I had a chest cold several months ago I actually started doing this very thing! I didn’t do it because of any knowledge I had regarding the thymus, but because I thought it might help with the heavy congested feeling I had. It really did help!! Of course, I did feel a little like a gorilla. πŸ˜‰ Funny to learn now that the vibrations to help loosen the phlegm, help to stimulate my immune system too!

    • Thanks for adding that! I didn’t even think about all of the indigenous tribes who include it in their war dances. Another example of the inner wisdom of our ancestors.

  • When I had my thyroid out due to thyroid cancer, the surgeon discovered that what they thought was a nodule was actually my thymus UNDER my thyroid (ie- it was not where it’s supposed to be). Will this still work for me? I’m guessing it will, since the vibrations in the chest affect the thymus.

  • Interesting how we instinctively pat babies all the time, and sick children, or when we’re putting them to bed. When my oldest daughter (who was born 7 weeks early) was little she always insisted on being patted to sleep. Glad I humored her. πŸ™‚ Thanks for sharing this.

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  • This is a Sahaja Yoga practice. I have been using this for nearly fifteen years and can advise that the above information is spot on! It really does work. It’s great to see this knowledge finding its way into the main stream.

    • I would avoid manual stimulation to the thymus area and work on ways to balance your body to reduce the hyperactivity. Thankfully, there is so much you can do to put autoimmune diseases in remission these days!

      • Dear Jennifer, thanks for all useful info.
        Can you please suggest what exactly can be done to put autoimmune diseases in remission ?

        • It is a bit different for everyone, but I highly recommend starting out with reading and following the Paleo Approach. It is very comprehensive and is very similar to where I start all of my autoimmune clients. You can read my review of it here.

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  • I’ve been doing this for a little while now, nightly, and I do think it really makes me feel better!

    Also, to add to the anthropological musings here, Catholics strike their chest 3 times during a particular prayer aimed at forgiveness/renewal/strength. Seems pretty interesting in the context of the thymus!

  • I’m sure tapping has nice benefits. The Chinese practice of Do In is all about that. The thymus involutes by the time we’re 15 or so and all of it beautiful immune cells have matured and gone to their homes elsewhere in the body. I love energy work and yoga, but the idea that thymus thumping affects thymus function is pretty unlikely. It could be a good placebo though.

    • They thymus gland still functions into adulthood and is a working part of our immune system, though its use does fall off as we age. There are studies currently running that confirms that stimulation of the thymus gland in adults increases the rate of T-cell maturation.

    • That can be an indication of a chronic virus or bacterial infection that the body has been trying to fight off. You can also rub it instead for a few days to see if the pain lessens.

  • I had my thymus gland removed with a thymoma. How does your immune information apply to me? Do I have any immune protection? If so, from where?

    • Thymus thumping won’t apply to you, since you are unable to stimulate the gland. It’s estimated that 60-90% of our immune system is located within the digestive tract. Thymus thumping can be helpful to boost your immune system temporarily, but focusing on the gut is the way to go for the bulk of immune health.

      You can look at my series on healing digestion HERE for more information.

  • I’m 71. I’ve been diagnosed with Mono. Not a teenage disease however they said it was an “old case” I’ve had it for a long time. I had lymph nodes removed under my arm in a surgery 2 years ago (not my choice-they just did it as a “precaution”) and I am thinking that has compromised my immune system. I’ve been dealing with lymphodema as a result. I will try thumping. Any further thoughts or techniques you can suggest?

    • I had mono recur 3 times myself as an adult before I began my healing journey. Not fun at all.

      It sounds like you have multiple layers of system dysfunction like many of us on a holistic wellness journey. I would start with healing digestion. Because most of our immune system is in the gut and we can’t heal without nutrients, it’s the most important place to start. Gut healing and essential oil support are my go-to methods for anyone dealing with chronic or ‘old’ illnesses.

  • One of our favorite therapies is thumping the thymus gland with our
    ultrasound magnetic pulser. The intense vibrations can be quite scary at first, however it is quite harmless as these are only mechanical vibrations.

  • Thank you for this info. I have always patted myself and children in this area, but never thought about why it was so instinctive. We rarely ever had colds and never got the flu. Now I understand why. Again, thanks.

  • I just read in Nexus Magazine about Thymus stimulation how inert gas breathing greatly stimulated rejuvination of Thymus. I have heard of thumping I will apply my NovaSonic intrasound tool for stimulation as well as pulsed magnetic therapy & other science yet to purchase as audio tracks. Visualisation is a great tool. Thank your thymus for being in perfect health daily. Eating a clean sourced Thymus gland from animal. I asked about Buffalow, he told me it is quite small. Then mad cow disease was in News. Desicated liver is said to be a fair source for Organ nutrients. Though I heard the old Farmers dried Thymus from there cattle like a Jerky ate it & prevented colds while working in the cold winter Barnes. Alternative health care is for the wise take charge non sheople of us foke able to use our frontal lobes to use focus & logic to make wise choices. The rest are just cattle for the A.M.A. stock market selling patent money making 20% symptom reducing toxins Drug means retard & or reduce a symptom, never treat the cause. But the cattle sheep love attention from Dr.ImakeMoney, Dr.Katchinga, & the specialist Dr.Bendover. ignorance is bliss & Americans choose bliss..

  • What if the thumping of the Thymus gland helps it to enlarge and then the anti bodies attack the body and the person ends up with Myasthenia Gravis?

    • Thumping the thymus alone won’t cause autoimmunity. It’s not that powerful. For someone who is already dealing with autoimmunity, they should be working with a knowledgable practitioner who can help them navigate resetting the immune system.

    • I’m sorry but I’m not able to tell you without knowing more about you and your health history. It could be exacerbating some chronic inflammation, clearing and detoxifying mucous or debris from your lungs, releasing blocked energy in your heart chakra, or even a symptom of a heart condition. I would follow up with a holistic wellness practitioner who can do a full health history and work up and help you pinpoint the issue. Best of luck!

  • When you say drink the tonic within 10-15 minutes, do you mean within 15 minutes or slowly drink it so it takes you at least 10 minutes, no longer than 15. I kind of chugged it and i’m feeling it πŸ™‚

    • I wouldn’t recommend directly stimulating the thymus gland in these cases. Instead I would support the function of the immune system as a whole and also support the detoxification system through holistic means that complement the medical protocol. Things like a nutrient-dense diet free of sugar and processed foods to flood the body with the tools it needs to heal and repair and liver support could be very helpful.

  • Dr. John Diamond in his book Life Energy is really big on thumping the thymus. He asserts that it helps to regulate the entire energy system of a person. Donna Eden is also big on thymus thumping (her book is Energy Medicine) and says that it will immediately boost your energy levels. I have started thumping my thymus, but so far I still need my coffee! lol

    • I hope she will answer

      and i would like to know about : I eat dinner wait 1 hour drink 250ml (sometimes more) of water and do this thumbing for 20seconds then is this correct? Answer please.

      • Hey Adam! Like I mentioned in my email reply, the thymus is not a digestive gland so thumping it will not have an effect on your ability to digest. Drinking anything more than 4 oz (125 mL) of water with meals can dilute your digestive ‘juices’ (the digestive process is explained in my Healing Digestion series), so that can be a factor in digestive dysfunction.

        • Thank You i will read this i appraciate it

          but i meant that i burp when i do thumbing maybe it is i dont know… anyway, if i do thumbing will it affect something? How long to wait after meal, dinner, before i do thumbing? Answer on this please πŸ™‚

          • Thumping on your chest just releases the gas that’s building up from eating and shouldn’t affect the digestive process or the immune system. If your body is trying to digest food, I would suggest waiting to do any work with your immune system. That’s best done between meals when at least the stomach is empty – at least 2 hours after eating. The gas after meals does indicate that you’re not digesting your meals properly. I would suggest seeing a qualified practitioner trained in digestive health.

    • Yes. It’s function is significantly reduced as we age, but it does continue to work into adulthood. There is continued work with the thymus in the field of immunology (and others) and published studies on some of the results with that work.

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