6 Foods That Help Prevent Varicose Veins
Varicose veins occur when the valves within the veins become weakened and cannot allow blood to flow properly. These type of veins appear enlarged, swollen and twisted, and can be blue or dark purple in colour. Varicose veins are usually not dangerous but in severe cases they can rupture and create ulcers.
To prevent varicose veins there are certain foods you can eat, such as:
- BuckwheatBuckwheat is one of the better natural sources of flavonoid rutin, a glycoside that encourages vascular health. When we experience a lack of rutin in our diet, our veins have trouble working properly. Try eating buckwheat porridge for breakfast or use buckwheat flour to bake with. Buckwheat pasta is also available—an added bonus of buckwheat is that it is high in protein and contains eight essential amino acids.
- BeetsBeets get their intense colouring from betacyanin, a compound that is also helpful in reducing the levels of homocysteine. Homocysteine is a naturally occurring amino acid that is responsible for damaging our blood vessels. If possible eat fresh beet, not canned. When foods are canned they tend to lose their nutritional power.
- GingerThis superfood has the ability to dissolve fibrin in blood vessels, helping with circulation. When you suffer from varicose veins, your body has a hard time breaking down fibrin (a protein that helps with blood clotting). The most effective kind of ginger is when it is in its freshest form. Most grocery stores carry fresh ginger year-round.
- BlueberriesWhen it comes to keeping the vascular system working smoothly, blueberries are a must. Blueberries can repair damaged proteins in our blood vessel walls and help with the overall effectiveness of our vascular system. Moreover, blueberries are high in vitamin E and a good source of insoluble and soluble fibre.
- RosemaryThis herb stimulates circulation and contains ursolic acid, which is able to strengthen the capillaries (the fine branching blood vessel systems that live between the arterioles and venules). Because rosemary is an herb, you probably won’t want to eat it on its own. Instead, use it to flavour other foods or consume it in capsule form.
- AsparagusAsparagus gives our veins and capillaries the strength they need to keep from rupturing. Also, most asparagus, especially the organic version, is very low in pesticides.
Besides eating the aforementioned foods, a great way to prevent varicose veins is to control your consumption of alcohol. Regular drinking is more likely to contribute to the formation of varicose veins, especially in women. You don’t have to avoid alcoholic beverages altogether but you should stick to one to two drinks per day on the days you drink.