Our lymphatic system is what keeps our circulation going and clears toxins and waste out of our bodies – but sometimes things get a little stuck. Here are 4 foods to get your blood circulating properly.
Capsaicin is what gives cayenne pepper its heat – it’s also what makes it so good for us. This phytochemical encourages blood flow as it lowers blood pressure and releases nitric oxide, which expands the blood vessels. This means blood can more easily move through our veins, thereby promoting the proper flow and circulation of blood. But that’s not all this spicy fruit can do – yep, chilli is actually a fruit! – it also may reduce plaque build-up in the arteries, reducing your chance for heart disease, along with increasing the strength of your blood vessels.
Pomegranates are loaded with what are known as nitrates – these are vasodilators; meaning they widen blood vessels, thereby increasing blood flow. Research has found that just 1 gram of pomegranate extract before exercising improved not only blood flow, but also improved performance. Pomegranate may also reduce inflammation and improve immunity, making it a whole-body health booster.
If you favour cinnamon sprinkled over your coffee, you’re in luck – this tasty spice is teeming with health benefits. From reducing your risk for heart disease to lowering your chances of obesity, cinnamon has a lot to offer. But it’s also known for promoting blood flow, with research finding that it expanded blood vessels and increased blood flow through arteries. While this study was in animals, a human study found similar results – the study found cinnamon relaxes the blood vessels, thereby balancing blood pressure and increasing circulation. These blood pressure balancing abilities also help reduce your risk for heart disease – win, win!
Citrus fruits are some of the best foods to get your blood flowing properly – this is because they’re loaded with antioxidants. These reduce inflammation – and therefore high blood pressure – the result is relaxed blood vessels and improved blood flow. Research found those who regularly consumed blood orange juice found improved circulation and blood vessel health.
Here are some of the best citrus fruits for blood flow:
- Blood orange
What else to do
- Quit smoking and reduce alcohol consumption: Smoking is a known risk factor for poor circulation.
- Reduce added sugars and highly-processed foods: These foods increase inflammation, along with increasing the risk for arterial plaque – both of which can result in poor circulation and clogged lymphatic pathways.
- Get those jogging shoes on: Getting exercise is a great way to get your blood flowing.
- Drink water: Getting enough water is an essential part of aiding the lymphatic process.
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