Preventing Varicose Veins In The Legs
Our veins are the blood vessels which transport blood from all the organs of our body. The veins in our legs must work against gravity to bring the blood toward our heart. They have valves which act as one-way flaps to prevent blood from flowing backwards. If one of the valves fails to function, blood would seep back and would begin to pool in our lower legs. It would then cause the wall of our veins to weaken and bulge over time which results to varicose veins. Having this condition could be painful and disfiguring for women and men.
The tendency to develop varicose veins can be inherited. Certain genes may have defects in the structure of the veins and valves. Here are some suggestions on how to prevent or at least postpone the appearance of varicose veins in our legs:
1. Flex, Stretch and Move
Being in a stationary position for too long, whether standing up or sitting down, results to the blood having the tendency to pool in the lower legs. If you are prone to be in this position day in and day out then it could weaken your veins which ultimately leads to their swelling.
Try walking in your place or flexing your foot up and down if you are standing in line for something to be processed. You can also rotate your foot clockwise and then counterclockwise to keep the blood pumping out of your foot and flow back to your heart.
It is critical in a long journey or in a typical day of prolonged sitting at your office chair that you get up and stretch your legs from time to time. The blood is challenged to flow back to your heart at a normal pace since the knees and groin are bent while sitting. Take mini breaks to grab some refreshments and chat with someone.
2. Exercise and Tone your Leg Muscles
While genes could dictate our predisposition to having varicose veins, we can counteract this by doing light cardiovascular and leg toning exercises in our daily life. You can ride a bike, brisk walk, run short distances, or dance in an aerobics class. These are great exercises to promote active blood circulation in our body and helps maintain a healthy weight.
Toning leg exercises such as leg lifts or raises specifically build up muscles in the buttocks, thighs and lower legs. Every muscle contraction in these areas assists the blood to find its way back to the heart. A well-toned leg muscle will pump out much more blood than a weaker one.
In a nutshell, avoid the sedentary lifestyle.
3. Eat Wisely
Go for fruits, protein, and whole grains. They help in losing your excess weight and at the same time provide nutrients to prevent varicose veins.
Citrus fruits have antioxidants such as flavonoids and Vitamin C which can enhance blood vessel function by reducing breakage. Also, protein and Vitamin C are components of collagen. Collagen is mostly found in fibrous tissues such as our blood vessels. These tissues may not swell that easily if the collagen is healthy. A diet with high fiber also helps in relaxing the blood vessels in your legs by promoting ease in bowel movement.
4. Choose Shoes Wisely
Choose shoes that are comfortable, low-heeled, and properly fitted because they do not put strain to your calf muscles that much. If you must wear high heels, please ensure that you are not wearing it for long period at a time.
5. Seek Good Support
Support pantry hose is way better than the regular ones in controlling the development of varicose veins. It is useful for women who are always on their feet like sales ladies working in stores, office personnel, or mothers who have children whom they need to carry in their arms. It can be worn underneath your sweats or pants. It comes in a variety of styles, colors, and strength.
This type of stocking applies more pressure to the lower leg than to the thigh area. Thus, blood is more readily pushed up toward the heart.