5. Eat some C. If you do bruise easily, there’s a possibility you could be deficient in vitamin C.
Vitamin C is instrumental in helping build protective collagen tissue around blood vessels in the skin, says Sheldon V. Pollack, M.D. Your face, hands, and feet contain less collagen than, say, your thighs, so bruises in these areas are often darker. If you bruise easily, Dr. Pollack suggests 500 milligrams of vitamin C three times a day to help build your collagen. Or you can boost your intake by eating foods rich in vitamin C such as citrus fruits, green leafy vegetables, and bell peppers.
6. Rub on Vitamin K cream. Vitamin K decreases bruising—both inside and out—by helping blood to clot. Rub some vitamin-K cream (available in your local drugstore and online) on a bruise a few times a day to clear it up faster, Dr. Halem says. You can also minimize bruising or ease the severity of a bruise by boosting your intake of vitamin-K-rich foods. “Green leafy vegetables, alfalfa, broccoli, and seaweed are good dietary sources of vitamin K,” she says.
7. Watch your meds. People who take aspirin to protect against heart disease or those on blood thinners will find that a bump easily turns into a bruise. Drugs such as anti-inflammatories, antidepressants, and asthma medicines can inhibit clotting under the skin and cause larger bruises. Alcoholics and drug abusers tend to bruise easily, too. If you’re taking medicine that makes you prone to bruising, talk to your doctor about it.
8. Try a Bromelain supplement. This pineapple extract, available in most health food stores, “digests” proteins that cause inflammation and pain, says Jay Zimmerman, M.D. “Take 1 or 2 grams with water before meals.”