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Health for the Holidays

Minnesota Vein Center is enjoying this holiday season. There are so many reasons to celebrate: family gatherings, good food and cheer served in excess, and just maybe you will have time off to travel.

For anyone traveling this holiday season, especially if you’re someone who is predisposed to varicose veins and spider veins, be aware of helpful healthy travel tips and and also activities to avoid in order to keep your circulatory system performing optimally.

Maintaining good circulation helps in avoiding the development of unsightly veins.  Fortunately, there are many things you can do to keep your circulatory system at its best.

Here are 10 tips for staying healthy while traveling this season:

  • Avoid sitting and standing for prolonged periods:  While in planes/trains, walk the aisle every one to two hours, for 5-10 minutes.
  • Exercise:  Flex and extend ankle (pump) exercises and do ankle rotations.
  • Wear graduated compression stockings:  Wear stockings, preferably knee highs with open toe, 15-20 mm/hg or 20-30 mm/hg.
  • Keep hydrated:  When traveling, it’s important to double your water intake.
  • Avoid Caffeine:  Avoiding caffeine helps with healthy blood volume and viscosity.
  • Avoid alcohol:  Start this several days prior to departure.
  • Avoid crossing your legs:  Crossing your legs (for extended periods) may affect venous pressures.
  • Wear loose-fitting clothes:  Tight clothes restrict blood flow to and from the legs.
  • Elevate your feet:  Raising your feet 6-12 inches above your heart when possible to aid circulation.
  • Take your vitamins:  Consider taking dietary supplements while traveling.  Vitamins C and E are antioxidants which aid in circulation.

When most of us are enjoying a holiday, it becomes easy to forget about one’s health.  However, it’s essential to take care of yourself.  Travel and many activities during travel can cause poor circulation.  Following these simple tips can optimize your circulation and even minimize the development of varicose veins and spider veins.

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