Keeping ourselves active can be one of the keys to improving poor leg circulation, since this way we help activate both the circulatory and lymphatic systems.
In this article, we will tell you what this complication is and especially how to prevent and treat it.
Poor leg circulation: What to know
The lower extremities are a fluid exchange zone. It is the end of the path of the veins and arteries and allows for the blood to return to the heart.
Blood vessels, the lymphatic system, plasma and proteins are involved in this process.
Therefore, when it fails, the fluid accumulates and cannot “return” to the right place. This is very common, because we usually have our legs in a downward position either when we are sitting or standing.
The force of gravity exerts pressure on the feet and causes different symptoms such as:
- Varicose veins
How to reduce poor leg circulation
Changing daily habits is essential to preventing, treating or reducing this problem. It can be complicated at first, but it ends in positive results.
Pay attention to these tips to improve poor leg circulation:
1. Modify your posture
- If you work in an office, get up from your desk from time to time and walk around it a little.
- You can also place a bench or trash can upside down to raise your legs while you are in front of the computer.
- If your job consists of standing all day, try to sit a few minutes every hour or take a few steps.
On long trips by plane or train, use the footrest and get up from your seat as much as possible. If you go by car, make rest stops every one or two hours.
2. Perform physical activity
It is not necessary for the routine to be too demanding. Daily walks, some swimming or bike riding may be enough.
- Low-impact and prolonged physical exercise is fundamental so that both the lymphatic system and the circulatory system are activated.
- Fit 30 minutes of exercise per day into your schedule.
3. Drink liquids
Rehydration is the most important measure in gastroenteritis
A good way to counteract poor leg circulation is by consuming fluids that eliminate toxins through urination.
- It is important that you drink water, natural juices (freshly squeezed) and herbal infusions (of diuretic herbs like horsetail weed or rosemary for example) to achieve this goal.
- Avoid alcohol, soda and coffee because they have the opposite effect.
- Do not forget to drink 2 liters of liquid per day and increase them to 3 when it is hot or you practice sports.
4. Elevate the legs
In addition to the technique of resting them on a bench to elevate the legs while we work, we can fight bad leg circulation by repeating this method when we get home.
- For example, when you sit on the couch watching television, you can rest your heels on the bedside table or on a chair.
- When you go to bed, lie down with your feet on the headboard and rest them on the wall for a few minutes.
- When sleeping, you can place some cushions under the calves. The idea is that the legs are higher than the heart.
5. Eat more fruits and vegetables
By containing a lot of water and nutrients, these are perfect for a healthy diet that reduces fluid retention and poor leg circulation.
When our diet is full of proteins and fats, the lymphatic system becomes overloaded and does not work properly.
- Eliminate all foods that “fatten” the blood and block the exchange of fluids.
- When it is possible, eat fruits and vegetables that are raw and seasonal.
6. Take a cold shower
Before getting out of the bath, spray a stream of cold water on your legs. Cover them with hot water and do the same with cold water.
This method provides an immediate relief when you feel pain and fatigue.
You can also repeat this in the mornings to avoid the consequences of spending so many hours with your limbs motionless in the same position.
7. Wear special socks
They are known as “resting socks” or “therapeutic socks” and are widely used in long plane trips. They do not compress the legs and prevent poor leg circulation, as well as the accumulation of fluids.
We also recommend that you avoid pants that are too tight, since they do not promote good blood flow.
8. Reduce salt and sugar intake
Sodium and glucose are two enemies of the lymphatic and circulatory systems, and therefore it is very important to reduce them in your diet.
Salt increases impairs kidney function, promotes fluid retention and blood pressure. As a substitute, you can use aromatic herbs or sea salt (in small quantities).
9. Perform massages
When you get home, you can enjoy a session of self-massage to improve poor circulation in the legs.
Once you have finished bathing (using the hot and cold-water technique), place a few drops of rosemary essential oil on your hands and rub the extremities vigorously from the tips of your toes to your thighs.
When finished, leave your legs up (with a cushion or on the wall) for half an hour.