7 Steps to Improving Blood Circulation
It’s not something we can see. But it’s just as important — perhaps even more important — than other health concerns we may have that are more visible. Sure, decreasing your waistband may be your top priority because of its apparentness, but blood circulation affects everything. Your day-to-day life depends on it. Without a strong heart and healthy blood flow, your organs and muscles don’t get the nutrients they need to keep you going. Here are ten things you can do to improve your blood circulation.
Eat iron-rich foods. According to the World Health Organization, iron is one of the most common nutritional deficiencies. It’s also one of the main components of hemoglobin, the protein responsible for transporting oxygen in your blood. Make sure you’re getting plenty of this in your diet through red meat, wholegrain foods, lentils and dark, leafy greens.
Use a stand-up desk. Sitting for long periods of time can increase your chances of poor blood circulation. To reduce the chances of this, using a stand-up desk or periodically move your legs under your desk can help keep things moving. Also, try avoiding crossing your legs for long periods of time. This is not only bad for circulation; it’s damaging to your posture too.
Start dry-brushing. Before you hop in the shower, use a body brush or exfoliating glove all over your skin. This can help to stimulate the lymphatic system and encourage better blood circulation.
Eat more garlic. You don’t have to tell us twice! According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, garlic helps to keep blood platelets from clumping, reducing the likelihood of blood clots and improving overall blood health. Garlic has also shown to reduce blood pressure and strengthen your immune system.
Visit a trampoline park. Looks like that 1980s trampoline fad was for good reason. A 1980 NASA study found that “rebound exercise” (read: jumping) is 70 percent more effective than jogging. This also refers to exercises like jumping jacks and dancing.
Drink tea. Not the Starbucks latte kind. The antioxidants in black, white and green teas have been shown to improve artery dilation and reduce your chances of heart disease. Snuggle up with a steaming cup and your favorite Netflix series — you can relax and improve your health at the same time.
Stay active. This may seem like an obvious one, but it’s a neglected one too. Instead of using poor circulation as an excuse to avoid exercise, push through that uncomfortable feeling. Cardio activities like dancing, running or swimming help to raise your heart rate and get the blood pumping.
Healthy blood flow affects everything you do. Whether your favorite activity is scuba diving, skating or playing with the kids on the front lawn, improving your circulation can make it easier and more enjoyable.
This is not to be taken as professional medical advice. If you’re concerned about your health or worried that you may be experiencing poor blood circulation, consult your doctor.
Credit: Photo by Lily Banse on Unsplash and Pexel