There is more to improving health that just shedding the extra kilos. Close on the heels of weight loss come health goals like gaining stamina, getting rid of aches and pains and staying mobile in old age. Not many think of blood circulation as something to consider in the general scheme of things, even though they may be unknowingly experiencing symptoms of poor circulation.
So how do you know if your blood is circulating at its optimum level? The heart pumps blood continuously, with arteries taking oxygenated blood away to other organs, and veins carrying deoxygenated blood back to the heart. Poor circulation happens when the blood doesn’t reach all the organs as well as it should, and this is usually manifested in the extremities as coldness, numbness, weakness or pain.
With the hectic lifestyles we have it is common that most of us may have a poor blood circulation, but the good news is that with certain measures and methods, you can improve your circulation and take it to an optimum level. Ready? We have listed some easy ways to boost your blood naturally.
1. Drink Water
Did you know that our blood is more than 80 percent water? Yes, so it’s no rocket science that drinking enough water can help blood move faster through your body. Another way to maintain the right level of hydration in your body is to cut out excess caffeine and soft drinks – these act as diuretics and can hinder proper circulation.
All kinds of exercise are good, but one which increases your heart rate is better at improving your blood circulation. When you exercise, your heart beats faster and pumps more blood through the arteries. Your heart gets stronger and it’s pumping capacity increases.
3. Get a Massage
Massages have been found to help poor circulation in some cases, especially when done on legs. A massage tends to loosen out congested areas in the body, enabling a smoother blood flow through them. Most therapists use a massaging motion pointing towards the heart. However, it is imperative to get it done by a professionally trained therapist.
4. keep your feet warm and raised
Some people just have a tendency for poor circulation, which could be genetic. Such people can greatly benefit by taking a little extra care of their lower extremities, which are usually the first affected by poor circulation. Keep your feet warm especially in winters and keep them raised when you can, like propping your feet on a stool when you sit down.
5. Do Yoga
There are many yoga poses that specifically target poor circulation and promise good results if done consistently and in proper form. Most of these poses open up the front of the body or involve elevating the feet. Some examples are Viparita Karani (Legs Up the Wall), Chakrasana (Wheel) and Salamba Sarvangasana (Supported Shoulder Stand).
6. Avoid Stress
Last but not least, cut the stress out of your life. People with chronic anxiety issues are found to have more circulation problems. Stress is found to be linked to reduced blood flow to the heart, a condition called myocardial ischemia, which can cause further problems. When stressed, the body responds by increasing the production of cortisol, cortisone and adrenaline, which increases blood pressure.
As you can see, these tips not just improve your circulation, they improve your general health and can also slim you down. Remember to make these a part of your lifestyle and your heart will thank you for a long time!
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