Foods That Help In Thinning Blood
The title itself says a lot about this post but before we jump to the foods that help in blood thinning let us have a look at how and why blood clots are formed.
Blood thickness depends on specialized blood cells called platelets. When you get hurt, your blood platelets get activated. They clump together and start synthesizing protein fibres that hold cells in a blood clot to prevent bleeding from the site of injury. Too much or too little blood clotting can have adverse effects on your health. Too much can cause cardiovascular illnesses and too little can cause bleeding disorders.
It is well said that ‘Food is thy medicine’. Eating the right kind of food can help cure many ailments and the same goes for thinning the blood. There are some common foods that are natural blood thinners, let us have a look at them.
Foods that help in thinning blood
Foods with EPA
Fatty fish is packed with EPA or eicosapentaenoic acid which is a type of omega 3 fatty acid with blood thinning properties. EPA is known to prevent blood platelets from aggregating. This anticoagulant effect of fish oils have a number of health benefits to offer. Fish reduces your risk of a blood clot blocking your arteries or causing a stroke by disrupting the blood flow in the brain. Salmon, herring and sardines are really good sources of omega 3 fatty acids. Vegetarians too can get omega 3 from flaxseeds. The omega 3 in flaxseeds is present in a different form that the body converts into EPA.
Foods containing vitamin E
Consuming vitamin E rich foods is also helpful in thinning blood. Just like omega-3, vitamin E prevents blood platelets from aggregating. It also inhibits proteins that are needed by your body to form blood clots. Rich sources of vitamin E are seeds and nuts such as, peanuts, sunflower seeds, almonds, brazil nuts and hazelnuts. Even avocados, turnip greens and spinach contain a lot of vitamin E. According to the Institute of Medicine, you need to consume at least 15 milligrams of vitamin E daily.
Health benefits of garlic
Just like fish oil and vitamin E, garlic is known to slow down platelet aggregation. It is also capable of lowering the risk of formation of a spontaneous blood clot. So, consuming garlic can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases that are related to blood clotting like strokes and heart attacks. Apart from these effects, garlic offers physiological effects like fighting cancer.
Issues to ponder upon
It may be generally safe to include fatty dish, vitamin E rich foods and garlic in your diet but you need to talk to your doctor before increasing your intake drastically, especially if you consume medicines or supplements. If you happen to take blood thinning medications then consuming fish oil, vitamin E and garlic can increase the time it takes for the body in forming blood clots after you get hurt. Talk to your doctor and confirm if it is safe to add blood thinning foods to your diet or start consuming fish oil, vitamin E or garlic supplements. Ask him/her if you have to reduce the dosage of anti-coagulant medicine to prevent the harmful side-effects.
Hope you found this post useful!
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