Yes, losing weight can help relieve the symptoms of varicose veins. But some people report that their varicose veins look even more visible after weight loss! Learn the reasons behind this occurrence.
You’ve probably heard that losing weight can help lessen the pain and aching of your varicose veins. So why would varicose veins become more visible after you’ve lost weight?
Don’t be discouraged! A healthy diet, regular exercise, and maintaining your ideal weight will improve your vascular health. Unfortunately, diet and exercise won’t do it alone if you want to eliminate swollen, painful varicose veins. You’ll need a minimally invasive procedure offered by a vein specialist to eliminate the problem of varicose veins.
How working out helps your veins
So why do your varicose veins look more visible after losing weight? While varicose veins can form deep in the leg, the visible ones are superficial veins close to the skin’s surface. Some may not be as obvious to the naked eye due to surrounding fat tissue. When you lose weight, the fat tissue thins, causing those varicose veins to become more visible.
But even if you see more varicose veins after you’ve shed some pounds, you should continue reaching your target weight. Weight loss and eating right improve vein health for these reasons:
Takes pressure off the veins. Inside your veins are tiny valves that pump blood back to the heart. Being overweight strains those valves, preventing them from pushing blood back to the heart. This stress causes a condition known as venous reflux, which is another way of saying the blood cannot move upward and instead pools within the vein. As enough blood collects within a vein, the vein wall stretches and emerges from under the skin as a varicose vein. By losing weight, you take an enormous strain off those valves and reduce your risk for other varicose veins.
Works the calf muscles. Those tiny valves can’t do all the work of pumping blood alone. They need help! When you walk or bike, your calf muscles help pump blood through the veins.
Boosts vein health. In tandem with regular exercise, eating right can improve your vein health. Foods most healthful for veins contain flavonoids, a nutrient that reduces blood pressure and relaxes blood vessels. Smoother blood flow can ease the pain and swelling of a varicose vein and lessen the chance of another one forming. Flavonoids can be found in onions, garlic, cayenne pepper, bell peppers, spinach, broccoli, grapes, cherries, and blueberries.
Although exercise, diet, and weight loss can reduce varicose vein symptoms and possibly prevent new ones from forming, those activities won’t cure diseased veins. The only remedy for enlarged veins is treatment, such as sclerotherapy, thermal ablation, and ambulatory phlebectomy.
Get your varicose veins treated
Losing weight is an excellent start to eliminating varicose veins. Begin your journey by consulting a vein specialist at Center for Vein Restoration (CVR) about the various modern treatment options available today! Every one of our offices across the country offers a full spectrum of therapies for vein disease.
Contact one of our offices for a vein consultation today, or call 1-800-FIX-LEGS to speak to a dedicated Patient Services Representative.