Poor blood circulation is a very common issue these days. The causes could include obesity, smoking, diabetes and Raynaud’s disease. Poor blood flow can also lead to a variety of other concerns such as pain, muscle cramps, digestive issues, numbness and coldness in hands and feet. If such issues become grave, they can be treated with medications. However, there are certain foods and lifestyle modifications that you can follow to increase blood flow in the body.
Health Shots got in touch with Dr Vijay Ramanan, M.D. (Med), DM (Clin, Haemat) Sr. Consultant Clinical Haematologist, to know foods that increase blood circulation in the body.
Count on these foods to increase blood flow in the body
Besides eating the right foods, you can also make certain lifestyle modifications that will show fruitful results in the long run. The doctor suggests quitting smoking, avoiding stress, refraining from consuming fried foods, drinking loads of water daily, eating fibre-rich foods, and exercising in moderation also help in improving circulation.
Apart from the aforementioned changes, some of the food choices you can count on include:
1. Eat foods rich in flavonoids
Foods that are rich in flavonoids like onion, and pomegranate help in improving circulation. Onions are known to benefit heart health and improve circulation by widening your arteries and blood flow to increase blood flow. You can also drink pomegranate juice which opens the blood vessels to make room for improved blood flow. Besides, it also keeps the arteries from becoming thick and stiff.
2. Eat foods rich in nitric oxide
“Foods having right quantity of nitric oxide like red chillies, garlic, cinnamon, beetroot, and green leafy vegetables are paramount in improving circulation. Turmeric through curcumin also aids in blood circulation,” shares the expert.
3. Vitamin C in any form always helps
Vitamin C comes from flavonoid-rich citrus fruits like oranges, sweet lime always helps in dilating blood vessels. These further help decrease inflammation in the body and can help reduce blood pressure and stiffness in your arteries whilst enhancing your blood flow. Alongside, watermelon is also known to improve blood flow since it contains lycopene which is a natural antioxidant that improves circulation.
Nuts like almonds and walnuts aid in improving blood flow by curbing inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. L-arginine is a precursor of nitric acid and is found in walnuts, shares the expert.
5. Tomatoes and berries
Tomatoes and berries inhibit Angiotensin-converting enzyme which in turn reduces blood pressure and improves circulation, says the expert. The lycopene in tomatoes guards the body against any cardiovascular disease. The vitamin K in tomatoes keeps bleeding and blood clotting under check while improving circulation. Also, blueberries and strawberries contain flavonoids that dilate arteries, lowers plague buildup and enhance blood flow.
6. Omega-3 fatty acids for improved blood circulation
Fatty fish with its omega-3 fatty acids reduces atherosclerosis and improves circulation. Alongside this, a diet rich in these fatty acids reduces the risk of heart attack and blood flow.
Also, always remember that WWW is a pneumonic for water, walking and watching your food/lifestyle for leading a healthy life. Your health is a result of the choices you make, so make wiser food and lifestyle choices to live a healthy life.