Your body works hard every minute of every hour of every day to keep nutrient- and oxygen-rich blood flowing smoothly to your brain, heart, and other tissues.
But when a blood clot interrupts that healthy circulation…
It can turn DEADLY in a matter of minutes.
So, today, let’s talk about six foods to help you maintain healthy circulation and prevent killer blood clots.
The foods to BLOCK blood clots
Before diving into the list, I should note that if you suffer from an arrhythmia (irregular heart beat), have a blood-clotting problem, or take a blood-thinning drug, make sure to check with your doctor before adding these foods to your diet.
Even though they are natural substances, they can have powerful effects in the body. Here they are…
1.) Cayenne peppers contain natural chemicals called salicylates, which help thin the blood and prevent blood clots. Aspirin is also a type of salicylate. That’s why some experts recommend daily, low-dose aspirin therapy to prevent a heart attack. Some research also suggests that taking an aspirin during a heart attack may help stop the clotting action. (Aspirin derives from the plant world, too, so this connection makes sense.)
Of course, hot peppers also have many other benefits. They contain other healthy, active ingredients—including capsaicin, which is excellent for joint health. Plus, studies associate daily consumption of hot peppers, like cayenne, with remarkable increases in longevity.
I recommend tossing hot peppers into salads and dips. You may also choose to keep some organic, Louisiana-style hot sauce handy in the kitchen to add some heat to just about anything!
2.) Cinnamon is a popular, aromatic spice that contains coumarin, another natural blood-thinner. (The more widely available cassia cinnamon contains much higher levels of coumarin than ceylon cinnamon.)
Warfarin, the most-used blood thinning drug in the world, derives from coumarin. But the drug comes with some dangerous side effects.
If you’re on warfarin, you should never take a cinnamon supplement because, together, they may thin your blood too much!
Of course, cinnamon has many other health benefits, such as supporting healthy digestion and balancing blood sugar metabolism. So, make sure to sprinkle lots of it into your cooking. I often enjoy it in my coffee or on top of my full-fat Greek yogurt and berries in the morning!
3.) Garlic is widely used in cooking throughout the world and especially around the Mediterranean region. After all, it’s a key feature of the healthy Mediterranean diet. Plus, it’s well-known for its ability to “thin blood.” In fact, many studies over the years shows that garlic broadly protects you against all types of cardiovascular disease as well as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
It seems to work by blocking platelet aggregation and increasing the release of nitric oxide, which relaxes blood vessels and reduces blood pressure.
Just make sure to use fresh chopped (or frozen) garlic to reap these amazing benefits.
4.) Ginger is another cooking spice used widely around the world. Like hot peppers, it contains lots of salicylates, which act as potent blood thinners.
You can enjoy ginger as a dried spice to sprinkle into your cooking and baking. Or you can buy the whole root and keep it in the refrigerator. Then, enjoy it freshly chopped, grated or ground on salads and stir fries.
5.) Olive Oil is also featured heavily in the healthy Mediterranean diet. And potent compounds in olive oil called phenols can help prevent blood clots.
In fact, in a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who consume olive oil with a high phenol content had lower levels of a substance called activated factor VII, which triggers blood clots.
So make sure to use olive oil liberally in your cooking and on top of greens—perhaps with some garlic and ginger, too!
6.) Turmeric is a potent, yellow spice that people in South and Southeast Asia have used for centuries in cooking and medicine. It’s a close botanical relative of ginger (in the Zingiber family). And it contains curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory and blood-thinning properties.
Studies over the past decade show that a daily dose of turmeric may also help prevent blood clots. Ultimately, I recommend taking 400 to 500 mg of curcumin daily as a supplement for all the remarkable health benefits, including joint support.
You can also enjoy the spice’s full benefits by eating curry or other dishes prepared with ground turmeric. Very often, curry recipes will call for it together with cumin, coriander, and chili pepper.
Before I go, I should mention that I sometimes publish family recipes that use many of the above spices right here in my Daily Dispatch and in my monthly Insiders’ Cures newsletter. If you’re a subscriber, start searching the archives…and get cooking! And if you’re not yet subscribed, click here now.