Obesity and Varicose Veins

July 10, 2019 • sdib • Blog

Exercising more and eating healthier will improve circulation to your legs.

While genetics, age, pregnancy, and leg trauma are all risk factors for varicose veins, obesity and lack of exercise are also two top causes.

Being overweight can put extra pressure on your veins; standing or sitting for long periods of time causes your veins to work harder to pump blood to your heart. Obesity can also mask the outward appearance of varicose veins, delaying potential treatment.

Doing physical activities, specifically leg exercises, helps push blood toward the heart and tones the muscles. Eating healthy can also help you lose weight, which will ease pressure on the veins.

Become Your Own Chef

While cupcakes or fries may be tempting, you should avoid junk and fast foods. Instead, buy some cookbooks or look up some recipes online and try making your own healthy and nutritious meals. Homemade food is typically healthier than fast food.

Eat a diet that is high in fiber and vitamins and low in salt. Include fruits, oats, salads, eggs, nuts, and fish, among several other items.

Get Physical

Studies and medical websites have various recommended exercise times, ranging from 20 to 60 minutes daily. But they all suggest various activities like walking, bicycling, and swimming to help activate your leg muscles and circulate blood.

If you can’t get out and walk daily, you can try some exercises in the comfort of your living room. For example, try 20 to 30 standing calf raises, where you raise yourself up on your toes and lower yourself back down. You can also work your thigh muscles by going from sitting in a chair to standing 20 to 30 times.

If you do sit or stand for long periods of time, make sure to take a break every 30 minutes to move around, suggests the Office of Women’s Health. Moving will help the blood circulate back to your heart.

Do not overdo yourself though. Heavy lifting could increase the pressure on your veins. Talk to your doctor to learn if you should lift weights and how much.

Add Motivation

Developing a healthy lifestyle won’t happen overnight, and that could be discouraging at times. Find ways to stay motivated to maintain your healthy lifestyle. That could mean rewarding yourself with your favorite treat once a week if you meet your eating goals or going to the movies one night if you walked every night for two weeks.

Monitoring your food and exercise in a tracking app can also be motivational and useful. Some apps monitor your progress over a period of time, which would show you how far you have come on your journey.

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