Even though poor blood flow is usually harmless, it is often a sign that you might have a blocked artery in your body. Having a blood clot can be extremely serious because it can lead to life-threatening conditions such as strokes and heart attacks. In this article, we will go over the signs and symptoms so that you know the right course of action.
We recommend that whatever conclusions you come to after reading this article that you go see your doctor as soon as you can get an appointment and get the proper testing. This isn’t the kind of thing you want to wait around about.
To say this another way, poor circulation means you are in poor health and you need to go see your doctor. It could mean anything ranging from low blood pressure to heart problems to diabetes.
WHAT ARE SOME OTHER THINGS THAT MAY CAUSE BAD CIRCULATION?
- Sitting too much (see video at bottom for exercises to help circulation)
- Eating fast food, a lot
- Obesity (imagine that)
WHY IS GOOD CIRCULATION IMPORTANT?
Every organ in your body depends on your free-flowing blood to receive the vital nutrients needed to function. Even if we slow down this process it can damage important organs like the brain and heart.
Think of a traffic jam on the 405 in Los Angeles for instance. When this happens, there is zero productivity happening; no one is getting anything done (let’s pretend iPhones don’t exist for a minute) or delivering goods to areas that need it. In order for the city and surrounding areas to “stay alive,” we need traffic to flow. Chronically tired? Cramping up? Pain in your legs? This could be signs that you have peripheral artery disease.
Here is the scary part, physicians frequently fail to detect peripheral artery disease (PAD) because the symptoms look like so many other health issues, according to the American Heart Association. And make no mistake, PAD can be very serious so it’s important to take matters into your own hands to help the doctor accurately see the problem. And make no mistake, PAD can be very serious so it’s important to take matters into your own hands to help the doctor accurately see the problem.
SO, WHAT EXACTLY IS PAD?
This occurs when plaque builds up in the arteries, a condition known as atherosclerosis. Over the years, this plaque can harden and constrict the arteries, essentially slowly choking your body. PAD normally affects the arteries in the legs.
- Leg pain and cramping
- Numbness in legs
- Slower than normal healing
- Loss of hair on the legs
- Shiny skin
Keep in mind that none of the above symptoms may occur or be as noticeable, so it’s best to put your attention towards preventive care measures.
PREVENTION AND TREATMENT
Here are our top 3 suggestions:
- Increasing physical activity
- Eating a plant-based diet
- Quitting smoking and drinking alcohol
Dietwise, consider eating more ginger (put it in your smoothies) and garlic. Vitamin E is particularly good for circulation, so nuts like almonds, Brazil nuts, and sunflower seeds.
Also, you can’t go wrong with getting more antioxidants vitamins C, D, and E, beta-carotene, and selenium. This means hit your local farmer’s market and stock up on organic fruits and veggies.
Please watch the video below for movements that can improve the circulation and health of your legs.