How to Improve Circulation, Naturally
Your circulatory system is one of the 7 vital systems of your body. And a healthy functioning circulatory system is key if you want to avoid heart disease, high cholesterol and coronary artery diseases.
Your circulatory system is meant to raise oxygen levels in your body and move congestion and waste out of the blood via the lymphatic stream.
It's important to realise that nutrients and oxygen-carrying blood can’t efficiently pass through your arteries to and from your 76 trillions of cells when your circulation is limited. And this is when you can quickly develop some pretty serious cardiovascular disorders and diseases.
These disorders range from heart disease as mentioned, to varicose veins, stroke, gout, heart infarct, diabetic complications and even emphysema.
Improving your circulation doesn’t just help you feel better, but it can save your life.
While there are medications that can improve circulation in the short term, of course they come with many troubling side-effects.
That's why natural methods are better for you and will help with other aspects of your health and life at the same time.
Keep reading to find out how to improve circulation naturally and effectively by making a few simple lifestyle changes that will have a big and lasting impact.
1. Drink Pure Water
Drinking plenty of water is one of the best ways to improve circulation naturally.
You might think you drink enough, but it’s a fact that most people are constantly dehydrated, which means their bodies don’t have enough fluids to flush waste and toxins from the body, or to maintain proper functioning of proteins, enzymes and connective tissues.
In fact, almost every bodily function uses water in some form or another. Water is vital to health and circulation. As a bare minimum, drink at least 2 litres of water per day which is the weight of your brain.
More optimally, you should aim for 1 litre per 22 kilos of body weight, particularly if you have pre-existing health problems.
Drinking water will improve your circulation by making blood less viscous and opening blood vessels.
2. Lymphatic or Deep Tissue Massage
The lymphatic system is a network of organs and tissues that help rid the body of unwanted toxicity and waste.
Regular massages are great for increasing circulation because they stimulate the lymphatic system to release congestion out of the blood stream.
Massages relax you and your muscles, which allow blood vessels to dilate and allow more blood to flow through. At the same time, pressure from the hands helps move blood through constricted areas and encourages new blood to flow through.
As an extra benefit, you’ll notice less tension and pain because of the increased circulation of blood to the muscles.
Acupressure is another great option for how to improve circulation naturally. Acupressure is given through clothing on pressure points and it helps to stimulate the flow of energy and improve circulation throughout the body.
It’s based on the idea that energy flowing throughout the body may be manipulated by pressure to treat disease or improve health. Acupressure requires no needles but uses instead elbows, thumbs, palms, and heels of the hands to apply pressure.
Exercise is a vital part of a healthy lifestyle, and it’s essential for good circulation. Exercise helps maintain the integrity of the arteries and heart muscles as well as facilitating the circulation of oxygenated blood.
The best way to treat circulation blockage is to walk each day and become more active. A simple, no-cost exercise like brisk walking for a half hour or more daily can send blood rushing to the farthest outposts of the body.
Bike riding, jogging, running or swimming are also great options if you’re looking for a higher level of activity.
Learn more in 5 Daily “Musts” to Boost Your Energy Naturally.
5. Quit Smoking
It should go without saying that smoking is one of the worst things you can do for your health and circulation. Cigarette smoke decreases blood flow by narrowing the blood vessels of the fingers and toes, increasing circulation problems for the entire body.
6. Whole Food
What you eat has an impact on every aspect of your health, so it’s no surprise that the food you choose can also impact circulation. If you’re looking for how to improve circulation naturally, choosing the right foods can help.
Nature's table is full of foods specifically designed to support your circulatory health.
Citrus fruits - lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruit are rich in anti-oxidants and flavonoids which boost blood flow and reduce inflammation.
All red foods like tomatoes, capsicum, chilis, beetroot and watermelon are packed with lycopene, which have potent blood cleansing properties.
Nut oils and cayenne are also great for boosting circulation.
Flaxseed oil can also help protect against high blood pressure by inhibiting inflammatory reactions that cause artery hardening plaque and poor circulation.
There are plenty of other foods that help clear arteries so that blood can flow more easily, like soybeans, buckwheat, rye, and the white pectin or pulp of citrus fruits.
Bilberry, or huckleberry, helps keep arteries clear by reducing swelling, increasing capillary strength and blood circulation. It’s thought that omega-3 fatty acids foster good circulation due in part to their alpha-linolenic acid content.
The presence of omega-3 fatty acids makes blood platelets less likely to clump together and form clots that lead to heart attacks.
You should also eat plenty of foods rich in vitamin E to improve circulation. Good choices include dark green leafy vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, soybeans, wheat germ and whole grains.
One of the most powerful of all is Grapefruit, which is why most blood thinners warn not to eat it while on the medication
Learn more in our blog, Grapefruit: the No Side Effect Blood Thinning Food.
Drink plenty of fresh juices that have beets, citrus in the winter and watermelon in the summer. Try this homemade detox drink to boost circulation:
- 2 tbsp Fresh Lemon/Lime Juice
- 1 tbsp Pure Maple Syrup
- Pinch Cayenne Pepper
- 8oz Pure Water
This “lemonade diet” or fast eliminates toxins and fats.
The lemon acts as a cleanser and astringent; it squeezes toxins from the tissues and stimulates the liver to detoxify. The pure maple syrup provides a steady energy source with its simple sugar.
The cayenne pepper gives heat to the body, aids the circulation, and acts as a diuretic, helping excess fluids to be cleared through the kidneys. Drink 8-12 glasses a day. Eat or drink nothing else except water and herb teas. Try this for 3-7 days to notice a significant health boost and circulation improvement.
More Tips for How to Improve Circulation Naturally:
- Lemons and lemon oil are used to treat nausea and stimulate appetite and circulation. Choose a high quality essential oil like the dōTERRA line for the highest impact.
- Feeling stressed? Start a workout. The physical activity will safely release your stress and also keep arteries and capillaries open and healthy.
- Lose some weight and you’ll notice an immediate circulation improvement; shedding excess pounds takes unnecessary pressure off your veins.
- Eat more garlic: garlic stimulates and improves circulation.
- Avoid wearing tight-fitting clothing that cuts off circulation, such as knee socks with tight bands.
- Rosemary can be used to improve circulation and stimulate nerves by placing a few drops of oil or sprigs into a warm bath in the mornings for ten minutes.
- Avoid sitting or standing in one place for too long. Get up at least every hour for movement.
- Massage legs regularly with coconut butter to improve blood quality.
- Avoid high heels. Low-heeled shoes work the calf muscles more.
Signs of poor circulation include: tingling, numbness, cold hands or feet, muscle cramps, throbbing pain in your limbs, and brittle nails and hair.
While these symptoms might not feel that serious, leaving poor circulation untreated can lead to a number of more serious health issues.
With these natural tips for improving circulation, you’ll soon find yourself feeling healthier, more energised, and pain-free.
Tolman Self Care.