Varicose veins affect around a quarter of the UK population. While you may not put any thought into the cause, it may come as a surprise that your diet plays a fundamental role in the appearance of these veins.
If your diet is lacking a proper amount of fibre or you eat an overabundance of processed foods, it can increase development chances. A diet high in sodium is also a contributing factor.
Processed foods lacking fibre can increase constipation while salty foods can put pressure on your veins. Both result in them emerging on the body.
Natural changes to your body, particularly pregnancy, can also create these unsightly marks. This is due to weight gain and hormonal changes.
When you control your diet, adding much-needed nutrients, you can prevent and decrease the likelihood of development altogether.
Recommended Diet for Varicose Veins
You may be wondering how constipation plays a factor in this. When you become constipated, you may notice that annoying, bloated feeling. This pressure you are feeling creates pressure on the abdomen. This will constrict natural blood flow through your legs, weakening your veins.
Adding fibre-rich nutrients in your diet will promote better digestion. If you achieve regularity, it will prevent this pressure from affecting your veins.
Some fibre-rich additives you can meld in include:
If you add in a few of these to your diet, you should notice a change within a very short amount of time!
Copper is another great addition to a varicose vein-free life! Copper is responsible for creating red blood cells, collagen production and boosting your immune system. It is said to protect your blood vessels and repair endothelial cells.
To give your body a copper-boost, some foods to consider are:
- Dark Chocolate
- Sweet Potatoes
- Leafy Greens
3. Vitamin C
Vitamin C plays a huge role in the flexibility and pliability of the veins in your body. Because it is a primary factor in your body creating elastin and collagen, it helps connective tissues of your body grow as they should, therefore keeping veins in working order.
You can eat more of these foods to boost your vitamin C intake:
- Citrus fruits
- Bell Peppers
- Brussels Sprouts
- Sweet and white potatoes
- Leafy Greens
4. Vitamin E
Vitamin E protects your cells from free radicals, which are what convert our food to energy. It acts as an agent to help reduce blood clotting. It prevents palettes from sticking together, creating a healthy flow through blood vessels.
Some foods carrying a good dose of vitamin E include:
- Sunflower seeds
- Sunflower, almond and vegetable oils
- Leafy Greens
5. Vitamin B12 & B6
Vitamins B12 and B6 help with blood flow to the body and help to prevent clotting. They are both water-soluble vitamins which reduce homocysteine in the blood. Because they are water-soluble, this means your body does not store the vitamins, they use and expel them. It is important to keep them in your diet to ensure you are always getting the right amount.
These vitamins come in protein-rich foods such as:
- Leafy greens
- Organ meats
Bioflavonoids are a group of polyphenolic compounds derived from plants. They provide powerful antioxidant properties, which help reduce free radicals in the body.
These antioxidant-rich compounds can be found in:
- Dark chocolate
- Citrus fruits
- Bell peppers
Water naturally cleanses the body. Particularly relating to vein issues, water improves the overall blood circulation in your body and strengthens muscles. These two factors greatly improve vein health. When your body is properly hydrated, your blood is thinner and therefore circulates as it should.
Meal Planning for Varicose Veins
If you do not necessarily implement many of these foods into your diet on a regular basis, it may be a good idea to map out a few meals. This can help you prepare, ensuring you have the health-boost you need.
Making small improvements in the selection of foods you eat can help you to adjust to changes bit by bit. Creating lasting changes is key in controlling and preventing this condition.
Breakfast can be hard on the go. It can be much easier to grab something unhealthy and artery clogging on your way out the door, or before getting to work.
To ditch the donuts, here are some quick morning breakfast ideas:
- Avocado, egg, and toast
- Dried fruit, nuts, and granola mix
- Grape, banana, and pear chopped fruit bowl
- Berries and yogurt
If you prep lunches beforehand, it can make your day much easier. If you take lunch to work or come home to eat, you can add in some nutritious choices your veins will thank you for.
Here are a few ideas to consider:
- Chicken salad with boiled eggs, spinach, and sunflower seeds
- Grilled chicken avocado sandwich on whole bread
- Garlic butter shrimp with noodles
You can make some pretty interesting dishes foods that are excellent for vein health. If you check out recipes, you’ll see that adding in these ingredients may be easier than you think!
Some delicious choices to consider are:
- Chicken alfredo with broccoli florets and cauliflower
- Baked salmon with wild rice and asparagus
- Beef chili with chickpeas, onions, and bell pepper
There are plenty of vein-friendly snack choices as well. Most are cheap choices, so it won’t break the bank replenishing your snacking station!
- Fruits, particularly of citrus variety
- Trail mix with plenty of nuts, seeds and dark chocolate
- A glass of your favourite wine paired with cheese or dark chocolate
There are many areas to improve on when it comes to ridding, reducing or avoiding the appearance of varicose veins. Since your diet is an essential area that cannot be overlooked, it is as important as exercise and proper bodily care.
If your varicose veins are troublesome or you are trying to avoid them entirely, start with your diet!
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