Top 10 Natural Blood Thinners

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Cassia Cinnamon is the best for blood thinning

Blood clots are gel-like clumps of blood-beneficial when they form in response to an injury or a cut, plugging the injured blood vessel, which stops bleeding. Sometimes, however, blood clots form inside your veins without a good reason and don’t dissolve naturally. These may require medical attention, especially if they are in your legs or are in more critical locations, such as your lungs and brain. As the world has been consumed with COVID-19 over the past 18 months, increasing data is showing that COVID infection can lead to fatal blood clots. A new study reveals the virus triggers the production of antibodies circulating through the blood, causing clots in people hospitalized with the disease. As always, follow the medical advice of your Doctor. Here are 10 natural blood thinners to incorporate into a healthy, well-balanced diet:

  • Garlic: We’ve written about the merits of this superfood and it’s anti-viral properties before, but it also deserves a spot on this list of natural blood thinners! A recent study showed that the garlic was as as strong as aspirin in preventing blood clots. It discovered a new anticoagulant made from a substance that is not present in a whole garlic clove but forms when garlic is crushed or cooked. The chemical is produced when two chemicals in separate cells of the bulb react to each other. The resultant chemical, called allicin, has long been known to have antibiotic properties (During WWI, crushed garlic was pressed into wounds to prevent gangrene.) The anticoagulant made from allicin is called ajoene.
  • Ginger: Ginger contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help thin the flow of blood and stop the formation of clots. This root is known for stimulating blood flow and keeping arteries elastic. This is due to the root containing a natural acid called salicylate. Aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) is actually a synthetic derivative of salicylate and a potent blood thinner.
  • Turmeric: According to a 2012 study, one of its main active ingredients, curcumin, acts as an anticoagulant. It works to inhibit coagulation cascade components, or clotting factors, to prevent clots from forming- it also works as an anti-inflammatory agent. Remember to always take Turmeric in conjunction with black pepper- the piperine enhances curcumin absorption in the body by up to 2,000%, magnifying its health effects.
  • Cayenne Pepper: The compound capsaicin in cayenne pepper promotes blood circulation and helps prevent blood clots. It also strengthens the arteries and capillaries- and is known to be used in the treatment of DVT (deep vein thrombosis). Clinical studies have shown that when ingested, capsaicin activates the body’s circulation process dramatically. Unlike drugs with stimulant side effects, capsaicin promotes circulatory blood flow through its’ natural ability to conduct thermal heat while also inhibiting the nerve receptors that cause swelling and pain.
  • Grapeseed Extract: Grapes — along with their leaves and sap- have been traditional treatments in Europe for millenia. Grape seed extract is derived from the ground-up seeds of red wine grapes and can easily be added to food and drinks.  Several studies suggest that GSE may improve blood flow. In an 8-week study in 17 healthy postmenopausal women, taking 400 mg of GSE had blood-thinning effects, potentially reducing the risk of blood clots.
  • Feverfew: Feverfew is an ancient herb claimed to help with migraines, soothe skin irritation, and protect against UV radiation-induced skin damage. Although originally native to the Balkans, this plant from the daisy family now grows all over the world, including the Americas. New studies are also showing positive data with regards to blood clotting too- due to the Parthenolide as the active compound found in the leaves. The parthenolide inhibits phospholipase A and prostaglandin formation and reduce blood clots, which decreases inflammation.
  • Vitamin E: Recent studies are showing that there is hope for this vitamin’s use in blood thinning. A new study was recently publishes on the findings of 40,000 women aged 45 and older who took either 600 international units (IU) of vitamin E or a placebo every other day and were followed for an average of 10 years. During the trial, 213 women in the vitamin E group and 269 women in the placebo group developed venous thromboembolism (blood clots). Overall, women who took vitamin E were 21% less likely to develop venous thromboembolism than women who did not, but the reduction was 44% among the women who had a history of clots. Taking vitamin E appeared to cut the clot risk in half among women with genetic mutations that increased their risk.
  • Bromelain: Bromelain is a digestive enzyme derived from the stem and fruit of pineapples. It’s often used to help reduce swelling after surgery or injury (there was recently a viral TikTok of a girl drinking a quart of pineapple juice before getting her wisdom teeth removed and had minimal swelling). What makes bromelain so powerful is the mixture of different thiol endopeptidases that break down proteins. This protein digesting activity is what contributes to it’s anti-inflammatory and anti-blood clotting properties. Alternatively, it may help heal burns and inhibit tumor growth by other mechanisms.
  • Ginseng: Also known as Dong Quai and a member of the celery family- is a staple of Chinese and Native American medicine.  It is supposed to help the body fight stress and increase energy. Several studies on animals show that ginseng significantly increases the length of time it takes blood to clot (prothrombin time)- due to it’s coumarin content. Recent studies have also shown that Dong quai may raise the risk of bleeding, especially if you take blood thinners, such as warfarin (Coumadin), clopidogrel (Plavix), or aspirin. Consult with a medical professional about drug interactions.
  • Cinnamon: The type of cinnamon, in this case, matters. Chinese cassia cinnamon contains a much higher coumarin content than Ceylon cinnamon. Cinnamon contains coumarin, a powerful blood-thinning agent. So powerful, in fact, that Warfarin, the most commonly used blood-thinning drug, is derived from it! Cinnamaldehyde, another compound in cinnamon, may help with blood clots by slowing down the formation of inflammatory molecules.

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