Losing weight can reduce the pressure on your veins, helping reduce your risk of varicose veins and prevent existing ones from becoming more severe.

Having overweight or obesity can increase your chances of developing varicose veins. It can also cause existing varicose veins to become painful or swollen.

If you meet the criteria for overweight or obesity, losing weight can be beneficial for varicose veins. If you already have a moderate weight, maintaining it can have similar benefits.

Here’s a closer look at the link between weight loss and varicose veins.

Excess weight can put pressure on your veins, impacting blood flow and contributing to damage to the small valves that keep your blood pumping.

Losing weight helps alleviate this extra pressure, which promotes improved blood flow. This can also help reduce pressure on existing varicose veins, which can cause pain and discomfort.

Weight loss can also make professional treatment for varicose veins more effective if you have obesity.

Losing weight can also reduce your risk of developing more serious vein conditions, such as venous thromboembolism, linked to obesity.

Though weight loss can reduce uncomfortable symptoms associated with varicose veins, it won’t cause the veins to disappear.

To fully remove varicose veins, you’ll need professional treatment. But if you have obesity, weight loss can make these treatments more effective.

Weight loss sometimes results in loose skin, making varicose veins more visible. This tends to happen mainly in the arms and legs, where veins may appear more noticeable with less fat tissue.

This effect may be more noticeable if you’ve lost significant weight or already had a relatively low body fat percentage.

Weight is only one of many factors that impact varicose veins.

To promote overall vein health, consider:

  • wearing compression socks
  • limiting prolonged sedentary activity
  • avoiding smoking
  • eating a balanced diet

These can all help reduce your risk of varicose veins and prevent existing ones from worsening.

If you want to completely remove varicose veins, talk with your healthcare professional about your options.

Varicose vein removal methods include:

  • Sclerotherapy: Sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure and currently the most common way to remove varicose veins. A clinician will inject a specialized solution into the veins that causes them to break down. It typically takes at least a few sessions before they fade completely.
  • Laser treatment: Laser therapy is another minimally invasive method used to treat varicose veins. Heat from the lasers gradually destroys them. It can take several sessions to see results.
  • Endovenous ablation: This is a more invasive method typically used to treat varicose veins in the legs. It involves making a small incision in the skin. Then, radiofrequency or laser heat will be used to break down the veins directly.
  • Surgery: This may be an option for larger veins or those that don’t respond to other treatments.

For those who are classified as overweight or obese, losing weight may help manage varicose vein symptoms. It can also prevent existing ones from getting worse.

You’ll need to undergo a professional procedure such as sclerotherapy, laser treatment, or endovenous ablation to remove the veins altogether.