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Food That May Reduce the Need for Prescription Blood Thinners

Learn how certain foods work as natural blood thinners.

garlic

Thank goodness for the life-saving properties of prescription blood thinners. Most people, however, do not want to take more prescription drugs than they need.  Always follow your doctor's advice regarding your medication.  Do not suddenly stop taking blood thinning medications as that can be dangerous.  In addition, do not begin a diet filled with natural blood thinners while your medicine is doing the same thing.  Make a time to talk with your doctor about the blood thinning properties of these natural sources.

Garlic

Garlic works directly on blood platelets making them less sticky. Sticky platelets can adhere to artery walls or clump together.  Allicin, the powerful antioxidant in garlic, also dilates the blood vessels so that blood flows more freely.  This can be beneficial for people with high blood pressure.  Learn more about garlic at Doctor's Hospital

Salicylates

Asprin, the most well-known salicylate, can protect your circulatory health in two ways. Asprin reduces inflammation, the bodies natural defense against infection. Inflammation can sometimes occur when no bacteria or virus is present and it is the normal cells of the body that are attacked. Arthritis is one example of a disease that is associated with inflammation. Visit the American Heart Association for more information on inflammation as a cardiovascular risk factor.

In addition, the salicylates in asprin inhibit platelet aggregation reducing the stickiness of the blood and preventing clotting. StokeCenter.org offers information on standard dosage amounts and side-effect information. Although asprin was originally derived from white willow bark, it is still a medicine and should only be taken under a doctor's supervision.

Salicylates are found naturally in many of the foods we eat. Fruit is a great place to start when looking for healthy food to add to your diet. Apples, avocados, blueberries, cherries, dates, figs, grapefruit, grapes, kiwi fruit, peaches, pineapple, plums, prunes, raspberries and strawberries all contain salicylates. Vegetables on that list include alfalfa, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, eggplant, hot peppers, radishes, spinach and sweet potatoes. Almonds, peanuts, pine nuts and pistachios are also sources of salicylates as are tea, peppermint, licorice and other herbs and spices such as anise, cayenne, cinnamon, cumin, curry, dill, mustard, oregano, paprika, rosemary and thyme.

Fish Oil

DHA and EPA, two fatty acids found in fish oil, are easily absorbed by the body.  Once in the bloodstream these Omega 3's help in the reduction of inflammation in the blood.  Fish oil lowers tryglyceride levels which is also important in maintaining heart health.  For more information on fish oil, visit the U.S. National Library of Medicine

The body is amazing in it's ability to heal and care for itself. Help it to perform at it's peak by following your doctor's advice and living a healthy lifestyle.


Our editor, Jean Fisher, is a former elementary teacher. She offers "What's For Dinner?" as a free service for busy families.One delicious meal is suggested for each day of the week, plus an organized grocery shopping list that can be customized to include all your shopping needs.You will also find two stimulating table topics and one educational after-dinner activity for each day.

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