Varicose veins are a common condition in the United States, affecting approximately 50 percent of people age 50 and older, particularly women, reports Healthline. In some cases, varicose veins are more than a cosmetic concern, as they cause pain and discomfort that hamper people from doing normal daily activities. Moreover, they can lead to serious health complications, such as skin ulcers and inflammation of the veins.
Studies show that varicose veins are a genetic problem, passed down from one generation to another. Age and obesity are other contributing factors. To keep your veins healthy, it helps to stay physically active and eat foods rich in certain vitamins. Follow these dietary tips to keep varicose veins at bay and prevent existing vein problems from getting worse.
Restrict calorie consumption.
Maintaining a healthy weight is a key component of an effective anti-varicose vein diet. A high calorie intake increases your risk of varicose veins, because excess body weight contributes to their formation. By losing as little as 10 percent of your body weight, you may be able to improve the appearance of varicose veins and make the knobbly veins less visible.
When you reduce your calorie intake, your body draws on reserves, such as fat storage, for energy. Healthcare professionals recommend spreading calorie intake throughout the day by having five to six small meals. This keeps your metabolism going while reducing cravings for sugary foods, thus promoting weight loss.
To lose 1 pound every week, make it a goal to cut down your daily calorie intake by 500 calories. A calorie deficit of 3,500 to 7,000 each week may lead to a healthy, consistent weight loss. It's important to remember that reducing more calories than necessary is counterproductive, so it's best to keep the calorie deficit within healthy levels. Moreover, exercise regularly and increase your physical activity to attain a fit physique.
Eat foods rich in vitamin C, vitamin E, and fiber.
The body needs vitamin C to produce elastin and collagen, which are two essential connective tissues that strengthen and tone the veins. Vitamin C also helps boost circulation. Some evidence suggests that vitamin C deficiency is associated with the development of varicose veins.
Vitamin C is known to deliver maximum effects on blood vessels when taken in conjunction with vitamin E. Also, add more fiber-rich foods to your diet, as soluble fiber can make stool softer and bulkier, thus preventing constipation. Constipation has been associated with enlarged veins, because it adds pressure on the veins, causing varicose veins to form over time. Make sure to drink plenty of water when eating fiber-rich foods to help with constipation.
Here are some of the best sources of vitamin C, vitamin E, fiber, and other essential nutrients.
Blueberries -- Blueberries help with varicose veins by fighting free radicals, repairing damaged proteins in the blood vessels, and counteracting enzymes that destroy connective tissue. They boost the overall health of the collagen matrix and vascular system. They also are rich in soluble fiber, insoluble fiber, and vitamin E.
Avocados -- Avocados are a great source of vitamins C and E, which are important for vascular health. Additionally, they contain high concentrations of glutathione, a tripeptide molecule that defends the veins, arteries, and the heart against oxidant damage.
Buckwheat -- Buckwheat is one of the richest sources of rutin, a flavonoid that promotes vascular health and helps control varicose veins. Buckwheat groats also loaded with essential amino acids for tissue repair. They make a delectable porridge for breakfast, while buckwheat flour is great for baked goods.
Ginger -- Known as a superfood, ginger helps treat varicose veins by dissolving fibrin and improving blood flow. When you have varicose veins, your body's ability to break down fibrin may be impaired, resulting in hard and lumpy veins. Add fresh ginger to your daily meals to help increase circulation.These nutritional tips can help combat vein problems more effectively when paired with a regular exercise routine. Stick with a healthy, active lifestyle to lower your chances of developing enlarged, unsightly veins.