Nothing slows you down like poor blood circulation does. Poor blood circulation is a common problem. It generally occurs when one leads a sedentary lifestyle or spends all day at desk jobs.
Heart diseases claim the lives of millions worldwide every year. Why does it occur? It is simple. Poor diet, unhealthy lifestyles and sedentary work are the reasons to blame. Blood circulation problems can vary from simple to very complicated problems. If you aren’t getting adequate oxygen in your cells, then the symptoms that occur would be swelling in your feet and legs, tingling in your hands and feet, cold hands and feet, low energy, a bluish tinge on your lips and fingernails. They can also be related to high blood pressure, heart diseases and strokes. It is a known fact that our body cannot function properly if it doesn’t have enough supply of blood flow. By increasing your circulation, you can improve the functions of your internal organs, increase your stamina and brighten your skin.
What is Circulation?
The term circulation is most commonly associated with blood circulation in the body. Circulation is responsible for actions that moves nutrients, gases and wastes to and from cells, and helps stabilize body temperature and pH to maintain harmony. We cannot live without our blood circulating throughout our body. The heart acts as a pump, keeping our blood flowing to our lungs to get oxygenated, and then carrying it to our organs, then carrying deoxygenated blood from our organs back to the lungs to get oxygenated again. When circulation is compromised, oxygen does not reach all the organs and areas it needs to, and our system can fail.
Circulation and the Body
Circulation is very closely related to health. Circulation also means the circulation of lymph in the body. If you suspect blood circulation problems, it is essential that you learn how to improve your circulation. The lymphatic system is an integral part of the immune system, which we all know is very important for health. Certain conditions and lifestyle habits can lead to poor circulation such as diabetes, arthritis, smoking, obesity and lack of exercise to name a few and similarly blood circulation problems can lead to many conditions and ailments. Learning how to improve circulation will lower your chance of suffering a number of painful conditions such as boils, chilblains and hemorrhoids among others.
Conditions caused by poor blood circulation
- Dark Circles Under the Eyes
- Cold Feet & Hands
- Eye Problems
- Vertigo & Dizziness
- Muscle cramps
- Leg ulcers
- Blood clots
- Carpal Tunnel
- Reynaud’s Disease
- Varicose veins
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Memory loss
Blood Circulation in Children
While adults are typically the most common age group to contend with most circulation issues, children can be affected by them, as well. Since the heart is the primary organ in the circulatory system responsible for pulmonary and systemic functioning, babies born with complex congenital heart defects are especially prone to experiencing difficulties. Whether or not temporary or corrective surgical interventions were performed for this condition, any defect in normal blood flow can have a significant impact on a child’s physical and mental development, from growth to behavioral and academic performance
How to improve blood circulation
There are many different ways of improving blood circulation, including those foods that are renowned for their circulation properties. Lots of easy ways are available to help boost your circulation. Following a healthy lifestyle is one of the best ways to promote and maintain circulatory health. Eating high fiber and low fat diets will keep blood flowing. Getting regular exercise, maintaining healthy weight and quitting smoking will all help as well.
Tips to prevent poor blood circulation
- Drink plenty of water, at least eight glasses a day for proper hydration
- Eat green, leafy vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, fish and poultry in small portions
- Limit sugar, alcohol, protein, dairy products, salt, caffeine and refined white flour products such as pasta
- Drink lemonade with real lemon juice. Lemon juice contains citrate
- Exercise regularly as physical activity helps to remove excess fat
- Increase your intake of magnesium and vitamin B6 supplements
- Use hot packs or castor oil packs to relieve the pain and cramping
- Try massage therapy, which can also help promote circulation
Natural remedies to boost blood circulation
- Eat spicy foods, which contain cayenne from hot peppers for example cayenne pepper in them. This chemical increases blood flow throughout the body. This is why many people become flushed when they eat certain spicy foods.
- Studies show that over time, mental fretfulness can give rise to circulatory problems. So stumble on a pleasurable hobby, get adequate sleep, exercise daily and find out relaxation methods such as yoga stretches and deep breathing.
- Water helps improving circulation. Avoid having chilled water. Sodas, alcohol and other sugary drinks can have the negative effect.
- Onions and garlic have been shown to not only improve blood flow, but also relax the muscles in the body.
- Use of Nicotine is a leading cause behind circulation problems. So give up smoking.
- Ask your doctor how much niacin he recommends; it’s a quite harmless B vitamin; get the version that causes flushing and requires increasing amounts as you become accustomed to it (start with 250mg tablet — or 500mg if it is timed release) to be able to flush. There is, also, a prescription drug using niacin with a controlled heart medication which is called Nissan (Trademark), but it has several serious warnings.
- Spices and herbs like cayenne pepper, ginger and garlic all help to increase blood circulation. These spices also contain tincture, which is easily absorbed in the body. Tincture helps reduce cholesterol levels, cleanses the blood, prevents heart disease and fights against atherosclerosis.
- Limit consuming salt, sugar and unhealthy fats such as coconut oils, full-fat dairy products and processed baked goods. Rely on fresh leafy vegetables, fruits and whole grains and eat moderate amounts of healthy fats that are found in olive oil, avocado, fish, nuts and sesame seeds.
- Dry skin brushing invigorates skin, increasing blood supply to the areas brushed and bringing them oxygen and increased circulation.
- Have contrast showers that alternate between cold and hot water. When cold water is running, the lymph vessels contract, and when hot water is running they dilate. This creates a pump effect that contributes to increased lymph drainage and blood flow in the veins.
- Massage therapy helps to release contracted muscles, which in turn pushes blood towards the heart and relieves strain and it definitely increases blood circulation
- A healthy diet is a must. One that includes high alkaline foods; that’s plenty of fruits and vegetables. Including this to your diet will increase oxygen supply to your blood circulation.
- Rebounding encourages collateral circulation, which is the formation of branch blood vessels that distribute blood to the heart.
- Stay hydrated and your blood will flow better. The levels of oxygen in the bloodstream are greater when the body is well hydrated.
- A sauna session dilates your arteries, gets your heart to beat faster and burns calories.
- Having Vitamin C helps to keep arteries flexible.
- Lemons contain citrate which naturally improves circulation. Oranges and grapefruit also contain citrate and have the same effect.
- When body and mind are relaxed, so are the capillaries and muscles. This allows for easier blood flow and overall circulation.
The best way to determine if your circulatory system is in top working order is to have a thorough physical examination. Several simple painless tests can screen your heart, certain arteries and veins for circulatory diseases. Seriously making changes in your lifestyle and eating healthy can see changes on your overall self. Even small changes can add up to improvements that may not only save your health but also your life. Also try alternative medicines like herbal remedies. This can take weeks to reach therapeutic levels in the body. Improvements are pretty slow but of course it’s another natural remedy.