If you have varicose veins or spider veins, a healthy diet may not be enough to make them go away. But you may be able to avoid getting more by eating these healthy foods for varicose veins.
Usually, varicose veins occur in the legs. They can cause the legs to swell, resulting in discomfort. Eating the right foods can prevent unnecessary stress on the legs.
Foods for healthy veins and arteries should have these properties:
- Low in salt: Too much salt can make you retain fluid. Excess fluid puts pressure on the veins and can make them bulge or break.
- High in fiber: A digestive system that is slow or blocked can also put pressure on the veins in the legs.
- Low in calories: Maintaining a healthy weight is one of the most important steps you can take to protect your veins.
- High in nutrients: Vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants also protect vein health.
The foods listed below tick all of these boxes. It’s no accident that most of them are colorful. Scientists say that the substances that give food color also make them healthy. For maximum benefit, eat these foods without extra sugar or salt.
What Are Some Healthy Foods for Varicose Veins and Other Vein Issues?
When you add food for healthy veins and arteries to your diet, consider going natural. Fruits and vegetables are beneficial in terms of vein health and will improve your overall well-being, too.
Blueberries are a superfood that should be a part of your vein-healthy diet. Blueberries are low in calories and high in fiber. They are also loaded with vitamin C, which is needed to make collagen. Collagen is one of the building blocks of veins and makes them strong and flexible. Blueberries also contain vitamin K, which helps to keep the circulatory system healthy.
The suggested serving size for fresh or frozen blueberries is half a cup, with only 42 calories. Avoid the ones that are sweetened or canned in syrup. Blueberries add beautiful color to fruit salads. They are also good with breakfast cereal, overnight oats, salads, or yogurt.
They contain the same type of “good fats” found in olive oil. Monounsaturated fatty acids that keep the heart healthy also contribute to vein health by improving the function of your blood vessels. Almonds also contain numerous minerals needed for overall good health, and a healthy body means healthy veins.
Almonds add crunch to salads, cereal, yogurt, and many other foods. Sliced almonds are great toppers for casseroles, rice dishes, and vegetables. A one-quarter cup of almonds has about 150 calories. Watching your weight? Make your serving size smaller. You’ll still get tons of benefits.
Spinach is loaded with vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. Fiber promotes bowel health and prevents straining, which can put pressure on veins. Antioxidants reduce inflammation and keep cells healthy, including the cells that make up veins and arteries.
A cup of fresh spinach is considered a serving, and it contains only 7 calories. Saute it or use it in salads. You can also add a handful to almost any soup, pasta dish, or casserole.
The substances that give beets their color, called betalains, also give them anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities — which are good for vein health. Beets also contain naturally occurring nitrates that boost blood flow and reduce inflammation in blood vessels.
Add grated beets to a salad, roast them in the oven, or turn them into borscht. They come with a bonus of tender greens on top that you can saute separately or add to a salad. A half-cup serving of cooked beets has just 37 calories.
Oranges are delicious and loaded with vitamin C. In addition to its role in building collagen, vitamin C also helps the body make elastin. As its name suggests, elastin helps to keep blood vessels flexible. Eat the whole orange instead of drinking the juice, and you’ll get fiber, too.
A medium-sized orange has just 62 calories. Oranges make a super snack, but they are also a great finish to a meal. They are sweet enough to take the place of dessert and tangy enough to leave your mouth feeling fresh.
6. Ginger Root
In powder form, it’s considered a spice. But in its fresh form, ginger’s flavor shines. Of course, you won’t be chowing down on spoonfuls of ginger, but you don’t have to eat a lot to benefit. As an anti-inflammatory food, ginger soothes the digestive tract. It can relieve gas and prevent bloating that can put pressure on the veins in the abdomen and legs.
A quarter-cup serving of ginger root has just 19 calories. Slice or chop it and add it to stir-fries, pepper steak, and noodle dishes. It can also be used to make yummy salad dressings, sauces, and marinades.
Grapes contain small amounts of multiple vitamins and minerals, but that’s not why health-conscious people are wild about them. Red, purple, and black grapes are rich in antioxidants including resveratrol. In addition to many other benefits, resveratrol contributes to the health of the cells that line your blood vessels.
A half-cup serving of grapes contains just 50 calories. Grapes are a lovely addition to a cheese plate or a salad with arugula. In the summer, pop them into the freezer for a frosty treat.
Besides Nutrition for Healthy Veins, What Else Do You Need to Know?
You may see advertisements promoting nutritional supplements for healthy veins, but typically you are better off getting your nutrients from food. Sure, it’s easier to take a pill than to seek out healthy foods for varicose veins. But with food, you’re getting the full package — with fiber, water content, and nutrients galore.
While you’re learning how to keep healthy veins, don’t forget that proper exercise is also good for vein health. And never beat yourself up for having spider veins or varicose veins. You can do everything right and still end up with some problem veins. You may have varicose veins because of family history, pregnancy, or a job that requires standing.
Remember: You don’t have to live with varicose veins or spider veins. When you are ready to do something about your vein health, My Vein Treatment can help. Our locator tool will help you find a specialist to answer questions and tell you about state-of-the-art vein treatments that might be right for you.