Nutrients for an improved vascular system


A diet rich in vitamins B, C, D, E, and K can strengthen blood vessels to support the venous system. Consuming whole, fresh foods rich in these nutrients promote good blood flow, reduce inflammation and help maintain overall health.

Vitamin B

You might know the complex B vitamin by other names such as thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate (folic acid), B6, B12, biotin and pantothenic acid.

Vitamin B6 can restore vein health, making it a good choice for varicose vein sufferers. Vitamins B6 and B12 promote healthy blood flow. Vitamin B3, or niacin, aids in blood circulation and lowering blood cholesterol.

Brown rice, wheat, barley, turkey and tuna have concentrated levels of vitamin B. Potatoes, bananas, lentils, chili peppers, beans, nutritional yeast, brewer’s yeast, and molasses offer high levels of the B vitamins.

Vitamin C

Another vitamin that promotes circulation is vitamin C. This vitamin also produces collagen and promotes elastin production, which reduces inflammation in the arteries and keeps the vein walls flexible. Vitamin C also is known for preventing cell damage because of its antioxidant properties, which offer healing and protection of the vessel membranes against damaging free radicals.

Want to increase vitamin C in your diet? Incorporate berries, broccoli, spinach, potatoes, tomatoes, oranges, and lemons into your daily menu.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is another powerful nutrient, which can be beneficial in preventing varicose veins. This vitamin helps to relax blood vessels and aids in flexibility. Vitamin D maintains circulatory health and assists in the prevention of varicose veins.

This nutrient can be absorbed through the sun’s rays as well as food. Vitamin D is found in dairy products and some fish. Talk to your doctor about taking a supplement and the proper dosage.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E assists in keeping platelets from sticking together and adhering to the side of blood vessel walls. This vitamin promotes a healthy circulatory system and can help to prevent blood clot formation.

Applied topically, vitamin E may be effective in soothing skin irritation that sometimes accompanies varicose veins. Taken orally, this nutrient is known to reduce physical discomfort from varicose veins.

Vitamin E is found in fortified cereals, vegetable oils, nuts, and seeds, and leafy greens such as kale and spinach.

Vitamin K

Vitamin K is an anticoagulant, which helps to prevent blood clots and to keep blood flowing smoothly through the veins. This nutrient plays an important role in blood clotting and can lead to a healthier vascular system.

When the capillaries absorb this nutrient, the vessels become stronger. Vitamin K can prevent the pooling of blood that can lead to the formation of varicose veins.

Some studies have shown that a deficiency in vitamin K can lead to the formation of varicosities.

Often vitamin K is recommended as a cream to apply topically to varicose veins.

Vitamin K rich foods are parsley, mustard seeds, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and pumpkin.

While the right nutrients play an important role in vein health, there is no sure way to keep protruding veins from surfacing. Dr. Van Cheng is a Harvard University educated medical doctor who specializes in treating venous concerns. Dr. Cheng 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