Increase Circulation with Vitamin C and Nitrate Supplementation

Increase Circulation with Vitamin C and Nitrate Supplementation

Poor circulation has been attributed to a variety of adverse health conditions. It is something that can sneak up on many people and, when they least expect it, a health compromise can occur. Symptoms of poor circulation vary with a variety of conventional (medical) as well as traditional (holistic) treatments available to relieve the issue depending on the cause. 

Recently, several studies have emerged which shows some unexpected benefits of how to increase circulation with vitamin C and nitrate supplements. This would, of course, be in addition to good lifestyle choices such as a healthy diet and strong exercise program. Plus, taking any supplements, particularly nitrate enhancers could be contradictive to certain health conditions so check with your doctor first. 

Symptoms of Low Circulation

Although it helps, even if you have a good activity/exercise program, you could still have low circulation. There are a number of causes which include:

  • Atherosclerosis (plaque buildup in blood vessels)
  • Blood clots
  • Being overweight
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • An anatomical anomaly such as abnormal arteries or veins

Determining if you have poor circulation means paying attention to some telltale clues your body may be trying to bring to your attention. Medical News Today lists some common symptoms of poor circulation which include:

  • Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Swelling in the feet, ankles, and legs
  • Memory loss and difficulty concentrating
  • Digestive issues
  • Fatigue
  • Joint and muscle cramping
  • Skin color changes
  • Ulcers in the legs or feet
  • Varicose veins

Quitting smoking and losing weight are two recommendations by medical professionals on how to improve your circulation but there is a third: a healthful diet. As recommended above, maintain a good diet and exercise program is essential but it is the ‘diet’ part that may confuse you. Most people consume animal proteins with minimal plant-based choices but eating more fruits and vegetables and limiting animal proteins may help overall circulation as well as improve stamina and other health benefits. However, you may be tethered to a busy lifestyle and don’t always have time to eat right. This is where targeted dietary choices and supplementation may help.

Vitamin C and Nitrate Supplementation

Nitrates have long been associated with increased blood flow and systemic stamina improvement, particularly for those suffering from erectile dysfunction. Overall, a study published in the New Zealand journal ‘Sports Medicine’ by researchers from Sport and Health Sciences, College of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Exeter found that, 

“In summary, dietary nitrate supplementation appears to represent a promising new approach for enhancing aspects of the physiological response to exercise, such as muscle efficiency and oxygenation, which might augment performance.”

When vitamin C was added to the mix, nitrate response was significantly effected. 

Researchers have found that adding a nitrate supplement along with Vitamin C may enhance blood flow functions of smooth muscles responsible for maintaining healthy blood flow. 

In the randomized double-blind crossover study, ‘The Effect of Dietary Nitrate and Vitamin C on Endothelial [smooth muscle] Function, Oxidative Stress and Blood Lipids [fats] in Untreated Hypercholesterolemic [high blood cholesterol] Subjects conducted by researchers at the University of Kentucky and published in the journal Athletic Training and Clinical Nutrition it was concluded that,

“Four weeks of NC [vitamin C] intervention improved endothelial function as measured by RHI [Reactive Hyperaemic Index (increased blood flow)] only in subjects with low RHI at baseline. The provision of dietary nitrate supplementation is a natural, cost effective strategy that promotes augmentation [expansion] in systemic NO [nitric oxide] synthesis, and reduction in oxLDL and blood lipids when co-supplemented with vitamin C,…”

Good Food Sources

Taking vitamin C and nitrate supplements can keep you on a good steady path of enhanced circulation. In addition, adding foods high in these may work in unison with this supplementation protocol. Good food sources of these include:

  • Nitrates – Beets, garlic, dark leafy greens, dark chocolate
  • Vitamin C – Kiwi, oranges, lemons, limes, strawberries

By boosting your vitamin C and nitrate intake, you may be able to improve poor circulation symptoms that may apply. In addition, it could benefit your sexual functioning as well as failing stamina which we often contribute to age rather than poor systemic maintenance. Consult with your physician or naturopathic doctor to determine if you can increase circulation with vitamin C and nitrate supplementation.