The circulatory system is comprised of both the cardiovascular system and the lymphatic system. The
cardiovascular system distributes blood throughout the body via the heart and blood vessels while the lymphatic system carries lymph via lymph nodes and vessels. Lymph is blood plasma that your body filters from the blood and flushes through the lymphatic system – blood plasma makes up about 55% of total blood volume. Lymphatic processes play important roles in supporting the immune and digestive systems, such as in your tonsils, which are the first line of defense against ingested pathogens.
Blueberries are one of the best foods for improving the cardiovascular system. Due to high concentrations
of anthocyanins, this well-known superfood effectively repairs damaged proteins in blood vessel walls and eliminates free radicals, which are cells that have unpaired electrons. Free radicals can damage your body as they accumulate in your cells over time.
Studies show that cranberry juice and flaxseeds also improve the overall health of the cardiovascular system. One experiment with nineteen subjects found that drinking three glasses of cranberry juice a day would on average increase the amount of good cholesterol by 10% -- this corresponds with an approximate 40% reduction in heart disease risk.
Flaxseeds are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids, which reduce atherosclerotic plaque build-up and prevent arteries from hardening. To give your cardiovascular system a boost, combine blueberries, cranberry juice and flaxseeds in a blender with your other favorite ingredients and create a heart-healthy smoothie or
To nourish your lymphatic system, citrus fruits and melons are key. Citrus fruits have impressive astringent properties that help remove any blockages in lymph flow while melons help keep the body alkaline. The lymphatic system functions best in more alkaline environments.
The digestive system is the starting line when processing food and assimilating nutrients – if it doesn’t
function properly, everything else can quickly go downhill. Luckily, there are many foods to support your digestion such as yogurt, chia seeds, bananas and much more.
You already have trillions of bacteria in your digestive system that help you break down food, and the probiotics in yogurt help replenish them. Yet, not all yogurts have these beneficial bacteria so check labels to make sure they contain live and active cultures. Probiotics also prevent infections of the urinary system such as in the kidneys.
Chia seed is a gelatinous plant food with a wide variety of health benefits. Chia stabilizes both blood
sugar and energy levels while keeping you full longer. When immersed in liquid, the chia seed releases a gel-like substance that is calorie-free yet keeps you full for a long time. This gelatinous coating helps regulate bowel movements, keeps the colon hydrated and helps eliminate toxins in the body. To get the most out of the chia, simply stir a couple tablespoons in a cup of water and let it sit for about five minutes until it becomes gel-like, then drink. If you can’t stand the consistency, add chia seeds to your yogurt, smoothies, and cereal.
Bananas are a much easier food to incorporate into your diet. They help restore normal bowel function
mainly by replenishing your body of electrolytes and potassium. If you have diarrhea (say, from too much alcohol) eating a banana should be high on your list of priorities.
While a healthy heart does much to reduce the risk of cardiovascular problems like heart disease, all your
bodily systems are connected in one way or another. Instead of just cutting out white bread and hoping that lowers your bad cholesterol, try making systemic changes in your diet. It’s difficult to have a healthy immune system, and thus a healthy circulatory system, when you have a bunch of toxins built up in your body from alcohol, cigarettes, pollution and what not. Incorporate a daily dose of detoxifying chia seeds into your diet and start drinking cranberry juice at lunch instead of soda or coffee. Little changes can make a big difference in the long run.