20 Healthy Ways to Boost Circulation
By Aylin Erman, EcoSalon
Learn to make your body go more with the flow.
Nothing slows you down quite like poor blood circulation does. If you aren’t getting enough oxygen to your cells, in an effective and efficient way, then you’ll most likely feel sluggish, look worn and tired, and perhaps even be covering a more serious problem – one that could indicate cardiovascular disease. To boost your energy levels, tone your body, and feel a whole lot like a kid again, get your life force energy flow on with these 20 natural circulation-boosting tips.
Ingest Cayenne Pepper
Cayenne pepper contains the chemical compound capsaicin, which may help to reduce cholesterol and clear arteries and blood vessels. Dash the ground pepper over sautéed dishes as well as into teas, soups, and juices. To target a more specific area of the body where you experience poor circulation, mix ground cayenne pepper with enough water so that it forms a paste. Spread the paste thinly on a cheese cloth and wrap the cloth around the troubled area. In case of a burning sensation, add some olive oil to the paste to relieve the intensity.
Dry Brush Daily
Dry skin brushing invigorates the skin, increasing blood supply to the areas brushed and bringing them oxygen and increased circulation. This ritual also warms you up on a cold winter morning!
To dry brush most effectively, brush in upward, circular motions toward your heart. Move the brush in a clockwise manner and go over each area of skin twice. Focus on the neck, behind the knees, under the arms, and general groin area for greatest results. Also focus on your lower butt and thighs to reduce cellulite.
Take Hot-Cold C0ntrast Showers
Contrast showers are showers that alternate between hot and cold 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.
Get Regular Massages
Massage therapy helps to release contracted muscles, which in turn pushes blood towards the heart and relieves strain. Schedule a regular massage, at least once a month, to enjoyably increase your blood circulation. What better excuse than for health reasons?
A healthy diet, one that includes high alkaline foods – plenty of fruits and vegetables – will increase oxygen supply to your blood and improve overall blood circulation. This almost goes without saying.
Ginkgo Biloba is used in Germany to treat varicose veins and is widely known for its ability to improve memory by increasing blood flow to the brain. The herb strengthens blood vessels and is anti-inflammatory.
Rebounding encourages collateral circulation, which is the formation of branch blood vessels that distribute blood to the heart. It does this by increasing the capillary count in the muscles and reducing the distance between capillaries and target cells. That’s something to jump for!
Stay hydrated and your blood will flow better. The levels of oxygen in the bloodstream are greater when the body is well hydrated.
Increase Dietary Fiber Intake
A high-fiber diet contributes to a healthy circulatory system. High-fiber foods promote the production of propionic acid in the intestines. This acid reduces bile in the intestines and stops cholesterol build-up. Lower cholesterol levels reduce plaque in the arteries and lead to better circulation.
Raise Your Intake of Garlic
Garlic is widely known to reduce cholesterol levels, cleanse the blood, tone the heart, improve the circulatory system, and prevent heart disease.
Use an Infrared Sauna
The infrared sauna is a powerful tool. Infrared rays penetrate the skin a few inches deep, heating the body from the inside out, while ambient temperature stays relatively cool. A sauna session dilates your arteries, gets your heart to beat faster, and burns calories.
Eat Foods With Vitamin C
Low levels of vitamin C are associated with the narrowing of the arteries supplying blood to the legs. Without an adequate supply of vitamin C, atherosclerosis can develop and plaque can accumulate in the blood. Vitamin C also helps to keep arteries flexible.
Add Lemon To Your Diet
Lemons contain citrate, which naturally improves circulation. Oranges and grapefruit also contain citrate and have the same effect. Upon waking, squeeze lemon juice into water or tea to reap the benefits first thing in the morning.
Use Heat Therapies
Heat treatments increase the flexibility of tissues, remove toxins from cells, and enhance blood flow. Hot packs, hot water bottles, and heating pads are popular and effective ways to treat an area of the body with poor circulation.
When the body and mind are relaxed, so are the capillaries and muscles. This allows for easier blood flow and overall proper circulation. Blood pressure also decreases. Practice yoga or take a moment everyday to do breathing practices, meditate, or to take a quiet walk.
Stretching allows for more muscle blood flow, which can prevent from injury and keep your body flexible. Join a yoga class with a friend or spend a few minutes each morning stretching.
Eat Foods With Vitamin E
Vitamin E widens blood vessels to allow for the easy transit of blood through them. It prevents clotting and helps in the creation of red blood cells.
Take Omega-3s For Heart Health
Omega-3 fatty acids lower fibrin in the blood. Fibrin contributes to the formation of blood clots, and studies prove that omega-3 fatty acids can prevent this from happening.
Embrace Dark Chocolate
Chocolate contains antioxidants called flavonoids, which boost circulation. In a 2003 Harvard study featured in the Journey of Hypertension, there was significant vasodilation among adults after four days of consuming chocolate.
Get Shut Eye
This tip can’t be stressed enough – it’s panacea for just about every ailment! Adequate sleep reduces tension in the body, allows the muscles to relax, and promotes detoxification and lymph drainage. All of these lead to better circulation.
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