Everyone knows getting regular exercise is one of the wisest moves you can make to improve your health, no matter how old you are or what type of life you lead. Exercise is important for losing excess weight, lowering cholesterol, and improving circulation and heart health, and it can even reduce your risks for serious medical conditions and diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular disease and stroke. It can even improve your mood and help relieve the symptoms of depression and anxiety.
If you have varicose veins, exercise can be especially important for maintaining healthy circulation, and it may even help prevent future varicose veins from forming, especially if your exercise helps you shed excess pounds. But as important as it is to stay physically active, it’s equally important to make sure you do the right kinds of exercises — specifically, exercises that won’t place additional pressure and strain on your veins.
While regular walking is very important for preventing varicose veins (and improving circulation and cardiovascular health), running is not such a good option. It’s true, running can help you burn more calories, which can be important if you’re trying to lose weight. But all that pounding on the road or other surfaces can cause your veins to swell and become irritated, actually increasing the risk of developing more varicose veins.
Weightlifting is another exercise that’s best avoided, especially if it involves very heavy weights. When you lift weights, it increases the pressure in your belly, which in turn can raise the pressure inside the veins in your legs. If you want the benefits of weightlifting, try using small weights and adding in a few more reps.
Lower body exercises like squats and lunges and tummy-toning crunches and sit-ups are also best avoided to prevent increasing pressure inside your abdominal area. In general, stick with low-impact activities like walking and swimming to get the most benefits and the lowest risks. Yoga can be a good choice too, as long as you avoid postures that cause a lot of tension in the abdominal area.
Vascular and Interventional Associates Vein Center is a leading Cincinnati vein treatment facility, offering state-of-the-art vein treatment options including sclerotherapy, laser vein treatment, and other options for varicose veins and spider veins. If you think varicose veins are just a cosmetic problem, you’re wrong. Some varicose veins can be a sign of more serious underlying vein diseases, including deep vein thrombosis. Other veins are more prone to breakage or vein bruising that can cause swelling and other problems. If you have varicose veins or if you’re suffering from pain, aching or heaviness in your legs, scheduling a vein evaluation is the first step toward making sure you get the treatment you need to stay healthy. Visit our website to see before & after photos of our patients, or to schedule your own vein screening, contact the Vascular and Interventional Associates Vein Center at 859-286-7333 today.