Poor circulation is an invisible threat to your health—you don’t see it happening, but you can feel it in a number of ways. Bad circulation can rob you of energy and potentially lead to serious complications, including a heart attack, stroke, high blood pressure, and kidney damage. On a smaller scale, poor circulation can make your hands and/or feet feel cold or even numb, cause your limbs to swell, and trigger leg cramps.
The best ways to get blood pumping to all areas of your body are through anti-aging nutrition and anti-aging fitness. Here are six tips that help boost circulation to make you feel younger:
Anti-Aging Secret #1: Spice up Your Life
Spices are an anti-aging secret to help boost circulation because they can assist in lowering LDL (“bad” cholesterol), keeping the arteries clear to circulate blood more freely. Spices also exert anti-inflammatory effects in the body, and whenever you can reduce inflammation, you’ll be helping to boost circulation. So, bring on the cayenne pepper, turmeric, and ginger!
Anti-Aging Secret #2: Vegetables and Fruits
Vegetables and fruits are alkaline foods, which can help to improve the amount of oxygen circulating in your blood. The anti-aging secret here is that when your blood is properly oxygenated, it can move more efficiently throughout your body, therefore helping to boost circulation.
Anti-Aging Secret #3: Aerobic Exercise
Give your heart a workout to get it pumping. (Check with your doctor about appropriate anti-aging fitness exercises if you have a heart condition.) This anti-aging secret to boost circulation involves doing something that raises your heart rate, like cycling up a gradual incline, swimming laps in the pool, or a 15-minute jog. When your heart works harder during exercise, its ability to work efficiently during downtime is improved. The more blood your heart can pump with the least amount of effort, the better your circulation will be.
Anti-Aging Secret #4: Regular Massages
Having a massage can really help to stimulate circulation, especially in the largest organ of the body: the skin. Many people have experienced the beauty of this anti-aging secret in the form of that warm, tingly feeling that pervades the extremities after having a massage. Get blood flowing to your hands and feet by stimulating circulation and blood flow in and around muscles and tendons.
Anti-Aging Secret #5: Body Brushing
Body brushing, also called dry brushing, is such a simple anti-aging secret to boost circulation, and it will cost you next to nothing. Brush in circular motions moving towards your heart, paying particular attention to joints like your knees, elbows, and shoulders. Choose a brush with soft bristles that are closely compacted together.
Anti-Aging Secret #6: Yoga
Yoga isn’t just an anti-aging secret for getting fit after 50. It’s also an excellent way to boost circulation because it gently stretches muscles and tendons and promotes deep breathing—stiffness, shallow breathing, and stress all contribute to poor circulation. Regular yoga sessions will not only get your blood flowing to all parts of your body, but it will also put your mind at ease, allowing you to fully relax—a relaxed body will have better circulation than a tense one. Click here to read about the best yoga poses for anti-aging fitness.
Gomez, V., “Eight Ways to Improve Your Blood Circulation,” Living Green Magazine web site, July 10, 2013; http://livinggreenmag.com/2013/07/10/food-health/eight-ways-to-improve-your-blood-circulation/.
“How to Improve Blood Circulation Naturally,” Nash Center Court web site; http://www.snclubs.com/blog/2012/10/how-to-improve-blood-circulation-naturally/, last accessed November 26, 2013.