I’ve blogged before about the many benefits of the Mediterranean diet: a reduction of risk in heart disease, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and death from (or occurrence of) cancer. But the potential benefits of the Mediterranean diet – compounded with a healthy regimen of exercise – extends all the way down to the legs.
New Study on Mediterranean Diet & Varicose Veins
Earlier this year, Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published “[…] what’s thought to be the first clinical trial to test whether Mediterranean-style eating can ward off cardiovascular disease in people at increased risk,” reports HealthDay.
In this study, older adults who maintained a Mediterranean diet were one-half to two-thirds less likely to develop painful peripheral artery disease, compared to those who tried to follow a low-fat regimen.
– Dr. Miguel Martinez-Gonzalez, University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain
This study used nearly 7,500 adults between the ages of 55 and 80 who were at increased risk for developing arterial blockages (due to diabetes or a combination of other risk factors, such as obesity and smoking).
How Does the Mediterranean Diet Prevent Varicose Veins?
First, it’s important to note that the Mediterranean diet cannot be said to fully prevent varicose veins. However, as this study – and numerous other studies – indicate, the Mediterranean diet may lower risk for atherosclerosis, blood clots, heart disease, and stroke, all of which are associated with peripheral arterial disease and varicose veins.
Creating a Diet for Varicose Veins
The standard “Mediterranean diet,” includes:
- Daily serving of whole grains, fruits and vegetables
- Low-moderate intake of fish, poultry and eggs
- Use of olive oil as primary fat source
- Very little red meat
- Some red wine (optional). Some dietitians suggest one glass per day.
Before beginning any new diet for varicose veins, talk with your physician. To learn more about varicose vein treatment options that may be available to you, contact Valley Vein Center. (Locations in Phoenix, East Mesa and Tempe, AZ.)
Please consult with your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.