Get a Leg up on Summertime this Spring
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Spring is barely here, but now is the time to think about what your legs are going to look like this summer. Starting a vascular care regimen now means your legs can be healthy, sexy and summer-shorts ready by June!
"Summer is time to show off your legs," says Dr. Robert Zeff, of the Vein Center at Iowa Heart. "Starting in the spring means you can get an early start on your summer legs."
The good news is a lot of things you do for you overall health can apply to leg care. The Vein Center at Iowa Heart recommends the following activities for leg-specific care:
Walk. The Surgeon General recommends the 10,000 steps a day program to maintain a healthy weight and to build bone and muscle mass, which contributes to overall leg health.
Eat right. Maintaining a healthy weight limits stress on your legs and promotes general wellness.
Moisturize. Try to give your skin a drink at least twice a day. This will help you skin maintain its elasticity and help support cell walls, thus helping prevent varicose veins.
Stand up and move around! Long periods of sitting can lead to deep venous thrombosis or blood clots. For every 90 minutes you sit, take a five-minute walking break.
Take showers. Exposure to prolonged or excessive heat during long, hot baths can dilate blood vessels, which decreases the return of blood from the legs to the heart and may result in varicose vein formation.
Elevate your legs. When reading or watching television, prop up legs parallel to the ground by resting them on a stool or a chair. This helps keep blood from staying in the lower legs and improves blood flow to the rest of your body.
Don't smoke! Smoking increases the risk of damage to vein walls and may result in varicose veins, leg ulcers and osteoporosis.
If your legs already have painful varicose or spider veins, you may want to visit a vascular care specialist to find out what treatment options are available for you. The Vein Center at Iowa Heart offers free vein screenings around the state. Visit the Web site at www.healthylegsmatter.com to find out when the next screening is happening in your area.
About the Vein Center at Iowa Heart
The Vein Center at Iowa Heart is part of a multidisciplinary approach to overall cardiovascular health and disease prevention by the physicians and staff of the Iowa Heart Center. Since its founding as a one-physician practice in 1970, Iowa Heart Center's focus has remained the same: To provide quality, leading-edge, compassionate care to its patients and their families. With nearly 60 cardiologists and surgeons serving 11 locations across the state including offices at Mercy Medical Center, Iowa Methodist Medical Center and Iowa Lutheran Hospital as well as a clinic in West Des Moines. Dedication to being the best has helped Iowa Heart Center grow to one of the premiere cardiology, vascular and cardiovascular surgery practices in the nation.
If you would learn more about the Vein Center at Iowa Heart, please contact:
Amy BentzPR & Marketing Specialist
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