Be it a noticeable blue line vein gaining prominence or an outright bunch of grapes, varicose veins can be more than unsightly – a stress and a concern of circulatory health. Compression stockings work best but there is some good support too from the garden and kitchen. Spider veins are classified as a mild type of varicose veins – they do manifest similarly – only closer to the surface. Rosy checks and Couperose manifest in the same way – the blood return is slowed by weakened capillaries. So all the remedies here tackle all three.
Garden spa – Gingko tea is great for all sorts of beneficial antioxidants but excels at improving peripheral circulation and venous health. Taken internally as a tincture, in jams or other culinary adventures the berries (minus seed) of Hawthorn strengthen capillaries. Internally and externally, Horse chestnuts do likewise. Horse chestnuts are rich in saponins – one in particular called escin is both anti-inflammatory and vasoprotective. Tinctures/extracts have a long history as oral medication to recirculate trapped deoxygenated blood from bruises, haemorrhages and notably varicose veins. Escin actually is most beneficial in strengthening the walls of capillaries, veins and arteries – it effectively diminishes the presence of elastase and hyaluronidase – two enzymes that break down protein and contribute to venous insufficiency and those varicose veins.
Kitchen spa – while we can eat more Vitamin K (all those green veggies) we can also note its technical name phylloquinone, in some cosmetic creams. Vitamin k is utilized by the body to assist both calcium absorption and blood clotting – and it is the latter mechanism that can prevent continued spider vein formation. Once the damaged capillaries have been encouraged to clot, natural healing commences and the body eliminates the surface blood – so the blue lines and redness flush begin to fade. You can try topical applications along with a dietary improvement. Blitz up a raw cabbage facial.
horse chestnut extract – to stimulate blood circulation and strengthen delicate blood vessels –
In autumn gather some nuts – remove each nut from its spiny green case. Crack the shell and remove the meal – place all the meal in a blender and cover completely with vodka. Blitz to a paste- add more vodka if consistency too thick. Some herbalist like to let this extract sit for some weeks before syphoning of the liquid but I find the blend holds well (shake if needed) in a fridge or dark cupboard and grows in potency – especially for topical applications. Tinctures of horse chestnut for internal usage can be manufactured in the traditional tincture way or bought standardised from health shops.
Peony plaster – Chinese peony has a several thousand year history as a nervine, tonic and antispasmodic while official peony shares those qualities it is also prized as a sedative and pain easer – the peony flower heads are utilized in infusions and tincture form for varicose veins and capillary health- the heads can also be blitzed with a drop of witch hazel and some mint leaves to make a leg stimulating, vein shrinking plaster.