Deep vein thrombosis, or DVT, is a condition in which a blood clot (also called a “thrombus”) forms in the deep veins of the body, particularly in the legs. While some folks are predisposed to clotting because of blood diseases, others may need to be careful because certain of risk factors, like birth control, pregnancy, recent surgery, or a sedentary lifestyle. Blood thinners and anticoagulants can help control DVT, but they're not for everyone. Luckily, certain dietary changes may be able to prevent the development of blood clots.
One of the most important aspects of a DVT diet is staying hydrated. Less water in your body means less fluid in your blood—and when your blood doesn’t have the liquid it needs, it gets thicker. This makes clot formation even easier than normal. Most recommendations suggest somewhere in the neighborhood of six to eight cups of water each day for the average person. However, on hot days or days when you're more active, you need to replace all that sweat with extra water.
Did you know...
- Are you currently or often tired? As contradictory as it may sound, one of the best things you can do is exercise! It gives you more energy by improving your blood flow and increasing your oxygen throughout your body. You don't need to do much; a brisk walk is all it takes!
- Starting to feel claustrophobic? The smells of apples may help keep your claustrophobic feelings at bay according to a 1995 study by Dr. Alan Hirsch. Green apples, specifically, helped people change their perception of their space. Maybe they thought of expansive apple orchards? Cucumbers and barbecue made the feelings worse.
- Just saying the words "thank you" can measurably improve your mood. Researchers can actually measure happiness and changes in brain structure when people practiced regular "grateful thinking." This included things like writing thank you notes, writing gratitude journal entries, mindfully counting their blessings, and thanking friends. It may be helpful in overcoming depression!
- Do you know what the strongest muscle in your body is? No, it’s not your biceps or your thighs. It’s actually in your head. The masseter is a muscle in the jaw that is used when chewing. When all of the muscles of the jaw work together, they can exert a force as strong as 200 pounds on the molars. That’s some serious pressure.
- Need a quick cool down? Try drinking some hot liquid. It's true! As counterintuitive as it may seem, the heat from hot liquids will raise your body temperature. This will heat you up and cause you to sweat. The increased perspiration will wind up helping you feel cooler as it evaporates. Try it out!