Eat your fruits and veggies for better vein health


What you eat makes a difference, especially when it comes to your circulatory and venous systems.

Choosing healthy foods aids in maintaining a healthy weight, reducing blood pressure and keeping blood glucose levels in check.

Many fruits and vegetables are vein-friendly, because their properties are proven to improve circulation and strengthen the vein walls. As a vein specialist with San Diego Vein Institute, I encourage the consumption of foods that are rich in Vitamins C, E, K and P (we call these bioflavonoids), because of their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities.

Below are some of my selections for optimal health benefits. But first one note of caution. Certain vitamins can interact with prescription medications. Talk with your doctor before making any lifestyle changes.

Broccoli, cauliflower, Lima beans

These tasty vegetables are versatile, inexpensive and easy to incorporate into a daily diet. Broccoli, cauliflower and Lima beans as well as many other vegetables have one thing in common: fiber.

Fiber-rich vegetable are good for digestion and help you maintain a healthy weight, partly because you feel fuller. A healthy weight reduces your risk of developing varicose veins or can minimize the vein concern you already might be experiencing.

Oranges, strawberries and blueberries

Foods naturally high in Vitamin C – such as berries, oranges, grapefruit, limes and lemons – are all excellent choices. Vitamin C promotes the development of collagen, which promotes flexibility and elasticity in the vein walls. This allows veins to contract and dilate for blood to flow easily.

Apples, apricots, cherries and grapes

These delicious fruits are rich in Vitamin P, commonly known as bioflavonoids.

Bioflavonoids have antioxidant properties, but they also have anti-inflammatory properties, which is especially beneficial for healthy circulation and vein health. The anti-inflammatory properties can aid in reducing swelling associated with varicose veins and can strengthen the vein walls.

Speaking of bioflavonoids, apples contain a bioflavonoid called rutin. Rutin is believed to help to prevent blood clots. But, be sure not to peel your apple for maximum benefit. Figs and citrus contain rutin, too.

Bell peppers

Bold and beautiful Bell peppers can be purchased in an array of bright colors that add interest to food in addition to Vitamin C and fiber.

Vitamin C strengthens the collagen and elastin in the vein walls, allowing them to expand and contract when they are under pressure.

Dark leafy greens: kale, spinach and watercress

Kale and other dark green vegetables contain Vitamin K, an element which studies have shown can contribute to a reduced risk for varicose veins. Fiber-rich spinach is a good substitute for those who do not like kale. Low-calorie watercress is high in Vitamins C and E, too.


Avocado might taste indulgent, but this healthy fruit packs a punch. These little gems are filled with Vitamin E, which aids in preventing your blood platelets from sticking together.

Other fruits and vegetables high in Vitamin E are pumpkin, mango and dark leafy vegetables. These foods also contain high amounts of an antioxidant called glutathione, which helps Vitamin C and E work more efficiently, so that your heart and vein health are more protected.

Want to know more about treating your varicose veins? San Diego Vein Institute specializes in treating venous concerns and optimizing venous health with a goal of helping its patients keep their legs looking healthy and attractive. San Diego Vein Institute is located at 336 Encinitas Boulevard, Suite 130, Encinitas, CA 92024. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call (760) 944-9263 or visit