You have likely heard more than once that eating fruits and vegetables is good for your health. A healthy diet has a positive impact on your quality of life, so of course, it is sound advice. What you may not know, however, is that proper eating habits contribute to optimal vein health. Your veins are an integral part of your vascular system. They have the vital role of carrying nutrient-rich blood and oxygen throughout your body. With the right diet, you can keep your veins elastic, strong, and functioning at full capacity.
Listed below are various ways to create a healthier lifestyle. If you’re searching for a diet for chronic venous insufficiency, use this blog as a guide to map out some foods you like that are also good for vein health. If you are suffering from varicose veins or think you may have them, contact our team at Northern Illinois Vein Clinic for a customized treatment plan and dietary consulting.
Drink More Water
The adult human body consists of 55 to 65 percent water. It is something no one can survive without. This life-giving liquid provides multiple benefits, from lubricating joints to flushing out waste. Additionally, water helps nurture the muscles that support your veins when they are under pressure. H20 keeps your veins healthy and strong, so it is important to keep water nearby. If you’re trying to get better at staying hydrated, and reaching your optimal daily water intake, start with small steps. Drink water when you are tempted to grab a soda, milk, or alcohol. Try switching to a new water bottle, or trying a straw if you don’t normally drink from one. These small changes can oddly help! You can also set hourly reminders for yourself to take a moment to drink some water, relax, and stretch. There are even some apps that can help you monitor your water intake, and reach your desired daily water intake!
Reduce Your Salt Intake
Do you like hot dogs? Is pizza one of your favorite treats? We know these types of foods can be so tempting. It is hard to deny that these are tasty; however, one reason why these foods appeal to the taste buds is due to their high salt content. Almost anything salty tastes good, right?
The consumption of high-sodium food increases water retention, which places extra pressure on your veins. As salt is a common ingredient in almost everything we eat, you can start taking control of your salt intake by reviewing the nutritional facts on food packaging and being mindful of how much salt you’re consuming.
While you do not have to stop eating salty foods altogether, it does help your vein health to cut back. Other salty items include foods that are processed, pickled and canned.
Eat Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Fresh fruits and vegetables are packed with bioflavonoids, sometimes referred to as vitamin P. This powerhouse vitamin gives fruits and veggies their vibrant, rich colors, and has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that improve the health of your veins.
There is an abundance of this nutrient in:
- Red bell peppers
- Brussel sprouts
- Sweet peppers
- Citrus fruit
If you want the most significant health benefit, eat these food items raw. Increasing your intake of foods that are rich in vitamin P is a vein-friendly way to eat.
Add Fiber to Your Diet for Venous Insufficiency
Obesity is a leading cause of varicose veins. When veins are under excessive weight, this can lead to cramping, swelling, restless legs, vein damage or blood clots. A fiber-rich meal plan goes a long way with maintaining normal digestive function and nutritional balance. Adding more fiber to your diet helps you maintain a healthy weight while also lowering your cholesterol.
Many Americans consume roughly 15 grams of fiber every day, which is well below the U.S. government’s 2015 Dietary Guidelines. Women need 25 grams of fiber each day while men need 38 grams of fiber daily.
Here are a few of the top fiber-rich foods that can assist with keeping your vascular system functioning properly:
- Leafy greens
- Brown rice
- Air-popped popcorn
- Chia seeds
Additionally, constipation is another physical condition that places too much pressure on the veins. Certain foods make it difficult to empty the bowels, including dairy products, starches, chocolate and red meat. High-fiber foods, such as walnuts, whole-wheat bread, peas, squash and apples provide relief from constipation.
Combat Vein Disease in Rockford
Eating healthy and drinking enough water are essential lifestyle choices to keep your veins healthy and strong. While these dietary changes support vein health, you may need treatment to return your veins to their normal appearance.
At Northern Illinois Vein Clinic, we offer a non-surgical procedure to resolve leg vein issues. Contact us today for a free screening.