Varicose veins are basically swollen and sometimes twisted veins that bulge through the skin. The development of varicose veins is the result of damaged vein valves. These valves usually get damaged due to an increase of pressure within the veins resulting in venous insufficiency. When this problem becomes long-standing, it is referred to as chronic venous insufficiency. When these valves are damaged, it can cause swelling, pain, and skin changes. While they typically develop in the legs, varicose veins can also appear in other parts of the body.
Usually, the blood from the legs should flow back to the heart, but in this case, the blood pools in the region and can eventually result in the development of leg ulcers.
Varicose veins are generally symptomless, aside from cosmetic issues such as bulging of the veins through the skin. However, there may occasionally be symptoms such as:
– Aching Pain
– Development of venous ulcers
– Heaviness of legs
– Swelling of legs
Most doctors recommend compression stockings, elevating the legs and even surgery for treatment, however, there are other clinically tested solutions.
Clinical evidence supports the use of the following:
1. Gotu Kola
Gotu Kola is an Ayurvedic herb known for its neurological and circulatory benefits. It has been extensively studied in human research and proven to be a potent medicinal herb. In the case of varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency, Gotu Kola has been found to be highly effective in clinical research (see study). It is highly recommended to use this herb with proper guidance as it may have adverse effects if used incorrectly.
2. Horse Chestnut
Horse Chestnut is a medicinal plant that has long been known to boost circulation and treat fevers in traditional medicine. The biochemically active compounds that give this plant its benefits are known as “aescins”. These molecules have poor absorption in the human body and therefore require bioavailability enhancers to be properly metabolized. In clinical research, Horse Chestnut was able to improve chronic venous insufficiency, reduce pain and leg swelling (see study).
3. Butchers Broom
This is a medicinal herb known for its benefits in treating a wide range of circulatory conditions such as varicose veins, atherosclerosis, hemorrhoids, and certain metabolic irregularities. In clinical research, it has been found to reduce the symptoms of chronic venous insufficiency including swelling of the legs (see study). In addition to its circulatory benefits, it should be noted that it has also proven to reduce HbA1C levels and total cholesterol while improving HDL cholesterol in Diabetic patients (see study). These metabolic factors also play a crucial role in vein and artery health.
In addition to using these herbs, it is crucial to provide your arteries with the proper nutrients needed to properly function such as:
- Vitamin D3
- Vitamin K2
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B12, B6, B3
These nutrients (with the exception of vitamin D) can be acquired from foods like Kale, Organ Meats, Salmon, Seaweed, and other nutrient-dense foods. It is also important to eat foods rich in antioxidants such as blueberries, brazil nuts, raspberries, strawberries, apples, red color seafood, etc. These foods help prevent further damage to the arteries and veins while eradicating free-radicals.
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(Always use medicinal herbs under the supervision of a doctor)
by Dr. Nishal R.
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