Nutrition for varicose veins

Up to 60% of the world’s population is affected by varicose veins. Pathological varicose veins develop against the background of a complex of factors, including hereditary predisposition, excess weight, and an unhealthy lifestyle. Effective treatment of varicose veins should combine several therapeutic approaches. One of the important areas for the prevention and treatment of varicose veins is a change in nutrition. Compliance with a special diet slows down the progression of the disease and alleviates the condition of patients.

Diet goals for varicose veins

It will not be possible to eliminate the problem by changing only the diet. However, people who adhere to the regimen feel far better. It is also important to remember the role of physical activity in varicose veins, which is also an important measure for preventing the disease.

The main goals of dietary nutrition for varicose veins of the lower extremities:

  • Weight loss. Excess weight burdens the vascular system, several times increasing the risk of pathological varicose veins and congestion.
  • Strengthening the vascular wall. Weak vascular walls cannot maintain tone and resist the blood flow. This causes an expansion of the vein bed with the formation of varicose veins.
  • Improving the rheological properties of blood. Proper nutrition leads to a decrease in blood viscosity. This facilitates its outflow from dilated veins.
  • Edema prevention. The use of certain products leads to an increase in edema, including the lower extremities, significantly worsening tissue tropism, which contributes to the progression of varicose veins.
  • Stool normalization. Regular constipation and excessive straining during defecation provoke varicose veins of the small pelvis and hemorrhoidal veins, which worsens the course of varicose veins of the lower extremities.

The daily menu of a patient suffering from varicose veins should be designed with these goals in mind.

To reduce weight and edema, it is recommended to increase the proportion of plant foods in the diet and normalize the drinking regimen. The main diet should be represented by vegetable fiber (vegetables, fruits, legumes), cereals, and lean meats. It is necessary to prefer coarse-grain bread and pasta made from wholemeal flour. Sugar, fresh baked goods, smoked meats, and other excess salt products can provoke puffiness. Therefore, limiting them in the diet will invariably lead to a positive result.

Useful substances for varicose veins

After studying the effect of food components on blood vessels, scientists have compiled a list of the most useful substances. This list includes such vitamins and minerals:

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) – is necessary for synthesizing collagen, which maintains the tone of the vascular walls. Sources of vitamin C: rose hips, red peppers, citrus fruits, black currants, sea buckthorn, apples, parsley, broccoli;

Nutrition for varicose veins
varicose veins
proper nutrition

Plant fibers (fiber) – improve blood pressure, thereby reducing the risk of thrombosis and helping restore damaged vein walls;

Coumarin – prevents the formation of blood clots by thinning the blood. Contained in cinnamon, horseradish, celery, parsley, red pepper, fenugreek, chamomile, nettle, citrus peel, red wine, currants, strawberries, gooseberries;

Copper – increases the elasticity of blood vessels, reducing the risk of their pathological stretching. Copper-rich foods include beef liver, shellfish, nuts, and seeds.

Bioflavonoids – have an antioxidant effect and strengthen the vessel. Contained in all products of plant origin: fruits and vegetables, citrus fruits and natural juice, berries, and herbs.

Vitamin E – starts regeneration processes in damaged venous walls and improves blood flow. It is present in both plant and animal foods. A large amount of vitamin E is found in sunflower seeds, spinach, vegetable oil, nuts, avocados, shrimp, redfish, asparagus, and broccoli.

Nutrition for varicose veins
varicose veins
proper nutrition

Vitamin B5 – allows you to avoid dangerous complications, including dermatitis and trophic ulcers on the skin. Foods high in vitamin B5: salmon, avocado, eggs, milk, peanuts, soybeans, lentils, and beans.

Foods rich in these nutrients should form the basis of the daily diet for people with varicose veins.

Diet rules for varicose veins

In addition to saturating the body with useful substances, doctors recommend adhering to a certain diet. This reduces the load on the cardiovascular and digestive systems of the body. Phlebologists and nutritionists give the following recommendations:

  • It is advisable to count calories to control weight. This is especially significant for obese and overweight individuals. The calculation can be carried out using smartphone applications or special tables. The norms of the daily diet are calculated individually.
  • The basis of the diet must be vegetables rich in vegetable fiber and vitamins. The best protein sources and unsaturated fatty acids are seafood (low-fat fish, squid, mussels, shrimp). It is recommended to abandon the use of fatty meat in favor of dietary poultry.
Nutrition for varicose veins
varicose veins
proper nutrition
  • Nutritionists advise limiting the use of sugar, pastries, muffins, and confectionery. Simple carbohydrates in these products contribute to rapid weight gain, creating additional stress on the cardiovascular system.
  • The best way to cook food is by boiling or steaming. Fried and smoked foods cause an increase in cholesterol levels, which leads to the formation of atherosclerotic plaques in the vascular bed.
  • Most doctors recommend that patients stick to fractional nutrition, in which the daily ratio is evenly divided into five meals. It speeds up the metabolic activities of the body.

Chronic diseases often accompany varicose veins. All dietary changes should be agreed upon to avoid negative health effects with your doctor.

Allowed and prohibited products

With varicose veins, nutrition should be complete and rational. You do not have to abstain from your favorite foods fully. It is enough to reduce the consumption of such products:

  • fat meat;
  • chocolate;
  • salty foods;
  • alcohol;
  • White bread;
  • muffin;
  • sweet carbonated drinks.

Healthy foods that should form the basis of a patient’s diet include:

  • oats, buckwheat, legumes;
  • beef and pork liver;
  • fresh fruits and vegetables;
  • nuts;
  • seafood;
  • blueberries, chokeberry;
  • olive oil;
  • eggs;
  • dairy products;
  • onion garlic.
Nutrition for varicose veins
varicose veins
proper nutrition

A diet for varicose veins does not contradict the general principles of a healthy diet. For the basic basis for the diet, the Mediterranean diet is ideal, following which you can quickly get in good physical shape and improve your general condition and well-being.


With varicose veins, you need to increase the daily volume of water consumption to 1.5-2 liters. This helps improve the rheological properties of blood, prevents dehydration, and reduces the risk of thrombosis and congestion. This is especially relevant for the elderly, who often forget to maintain a proper drinking regimen.

Nutrition for varicose veins
varicose veins
proper nutrition

Alcohol contributes to dehydration by thickening the blood, increasing the thrombosis risk. The use of alcoholic beverages must be completely abandoned. As for drinks with a high content of caffeine, their restriction is also important, as they can provoke an increase in blood pressure, increasing the load on the vessels.

People suffering from varicose veins need to be careful about their diet. Even after removing varicose veins, the diet can reduce the risk of disease recurrence. Proper nutrition is an important direction in the prevention of varicose veins worldwide.


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