Water retention, also known as fluid retention or edema, is a condition whereby the lymphatic system fails to properly remove excess fluid from our body tissues. As such, the fluids become trapped in our body tissues, which would lead to swelling or bloating of various parts of our body.
The hands, legs, ankles, and feet are common parts of the body that tend to look visibly swollen during the onset of water retention.
Factors that can increase the likelihood of water retention include; vitamin deficiencies, poor blood circulation, physical inactivity or lack of exercising, excessive consumption of salt or sodium, menstruation, hot weather, allergies, stress, pregnancy, venous insufficiency (improper functioning of the vein valves that could lead to swelling), lung diseases, kidney problems, thyroid disorders, and failing liver.
Common symptoms of water retention include; swelling and puffiness especially of joints and limbs, weight increase, stiff joints, blood pressure and pulse rate increase, as well as experiencing a bloated feeling.
Here are tips and good practices, to consider, when dealing with body water and fluid retention;
- Reduce your consumption of sugar as sugar tends to increase the body’s insulin levels and insulin inhibits the body’s ability to flush out salt or sodium.
- Ensure you include exercising in your regular weekly routine as exercising expels water and salt from the body.
- Ensure you stay hydrated by drinking water all through the day.
- Avoid the consumption of caffeine, alcohol, and soda drinks as they tend to make you dehydrated which, in turn, triggers the body to store more water.
- You could elevate your legs when you are resting to help reduce swelling of the lower limbs.
- Avoid sitting or standing for long periods. Take breaks often and stretch or walk around.
- Be aware that certain medications such as steroids and birth control pills can lead to water retention. Consult your health care provider if there is a need for you to switch medications.
Below are natural treatments and home remedies to treat water retention;
1. Parsley Leaves
Parsley leaves can help treat water retention effectively and quickly. Parsley is a potent diuretic and is also highly rich in antioxidants, calcium and Vitamin B complex. Parsley plays a key role in the reabsorption of potassium and sodium, thus, promoting a good flow of more fluid from your kidneys which increases the volume of your urine.
Parsley can also help in treating other problems that are caused by water retention such as urinary tract infection, kidney stones, and edema among others. You can add fresh parsley leaves to 1 liter of boiled water and then cover them with a lid for about 15 minutes. Strain the tea afterward, then drink one cup of it. Take the remaining cups throughout the day. Follow this remedy regularly to get the best results.
2. Barley And Water
Barley makes a good home remedy because it contains diuretic properties that will help get rid of water retention in your body. You can make this remedy by using barley and water. You need to add 3 tablespoons of barley to a small bowl of water and let it soak overnight. Strain the water the following day and drink it. Soak the barley again in water, strain and drink it during bedtime. Follow this remedy twice daily until you get relief.
3. Corn Silk
Corn silk is a powerful herb that can treat edema and urinary tract infections caused by water retention. Being a diuretic, corn silk can help prevent any excess formation of water in the body, facilitate the liver in getting rid of toxins from the body which helps relieve and prevent the problem of water retention in your body. It also contains antioxidants, polyphenols, and flavonoids that can help in cleaning your blood.
You can make this remedy by, adding boiled water to corn silk in a teapot and then steeping it for about 6 minutes. Strain the tea and drink it twice daily. Follow this remedy daily until you get the desired results.
4. Drink More Water
Your body could tend to hold more water because of a low amount of body fluids thus causing water retention. Drinking plenty of water, on spread intervals, throughout the day can help treat as well as prevent water retention. You should drink at least 8-10 glasses of water throughout the day.
5. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has the ability to reduce the amount of sodium levels in the body. This helps bring about a balance between alkalinity and acid levels which would give you the right pH in your body. This would, in turn, prevent water retention.
To make this remedy, you need to add 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to one glass of water and stir them to make a good mixture. Drink the solution immediately to get rid of water retention. Follow this remedy twice daily for effective results.
6. Reduce Your Salt Intake
High sodium levels in your body can lead to excessive water retention in your body. In order to treat water retention, you should avoid taking foods that are rich in salt such as canned meat and potato chips. Try to keep your salt intake at the lowest level possible for better results when treating water retention.
Garlic is a diuretic spice which can help treat water retention by facilitating the release of excess fluid from the body. Add garlic to your food when always cooking for the best results. You can choose to eat 1 or 2 cloves of raw garlic, daily, or you can grind it to make a paste, then mix the paste with butter and apply it on your bread. Have the bread like any other.
8. Take Herbal Tea
Herbal teas are made of numerous diuretic herbs that all work together to treat water retention in your body tissues. You can also use fresh herbs like 3 parsley leaves, a teaspoon of ground buckwheat herb, 1 dandelion leaf, half celery tops and 1 blackberry leaf. Mix the fresh herbs together with one liter of water and boil the mixture. Then, turn off the heat and steep for about 15 minutes. Strain the tea and drink it throughout the day. Follow this procedure every time you experience water retention issues.
9. Fennel Tea
Fennel is a diuretic herb with numerous medicinal properties that can help get rid of excess water from the body. Fennel also helps get rid of toxins through the kidneys. You can add I teaspoon of fennel seeds into water and boil the mixture. Cover the contents and steep for about 10 minutes. Then, strain the tea and drink it. Follow this remedy 3 times daily for the best results. Alternatively, you can choose to chew fennel seeds which also help in releasing excessive fluids.
10. Reduce Your Sugar Intake
Sugar can trigger your body to produce more insulin in the body which inhibits the ability of the body to get rid of excessive salt. Excessive salt will lead to water retention. Thus, reducing your intake of sugar will help prevent water retention. You should avoid sugary foods such as cakes, candies, soda, and cookies.
11. Take High Potassium Foods
Lack of enough potassium in your body can lead to water retention in your body. You should eat more foods that are highly rich in potassium such as bananas, blackberries, apples, oranges, raspberries, and raisins among many others which will help in getting rid of excess water in your body tissues.
Lemon contains diuretic properties that are very useful in eliminating excess water as well as getting rid of toxins from the body through the kidneys. For this remedy, you can extract some lemon juice and add two tablespoons of the juice to a cup of warm water. Then, add 1 teaspoon of honey to the mixture and stir well. Drink the solution. Follow this remedy once daily for two weeks or until you get rid of the water retention condition significantly.
13. Stinging Nettle
Stinging nettle or simply the nettle is a natural diuretic that can treat and prevent water retention. You can prepare nettle tea and have it daily for the best results. You need to boil a cup of water and then add one teaspoon of nettle powder into the boiling water. Leave the mixture for about 10 minutes and drink it while still hot. Follow this remedy three times daily for faster results.
Cranberry is rich in minerals like calcium, magnesium, and potassium and is also a natural diuretic with numerous properties that can help get rid of excess water in the body tissues. You can use this remedy by drinking 1 cup of pure cranberry juice every day until you get your desired relief.
15. Take Yogurt
Yogurt is highly rich in nutrients and protein that can help in treating water retention problem. Lack of enough protein in the body can cause the body to hold more water, therefore, including more protein in your diet, such as yogurts, would help prevent as well as release the excess water from your body.
Aromatherapy can be an effective therapy for your lymphatic system. Aromatherapy also promotes the removal of excess fluid from the body. Regular aromatherapy will help treat as well as prevent water retention in your body.
You can add several drops of essential oils such as juniper, geranium, and cypress to a bathtub and get into the water to soak, in it, for about 10 minutes. Do not wipe off the water with a towel, when you are through, but rather pat it off. Follow this remedy 3 times per week until you get the best results.
17. Dandelion Leaves
Dandelion is a natural diuretic with numerous medicinal properties that can be very useful in releasing excess water from the body. Dandelion also has the ability to improve the kidney function which will help in getting rid of excess salt from the body.
You can boil 1 cup of water, then, pour it on one teaspoon of dried dandelion leaves. Cover the mixture and allow it to soak for about 10 minutes. Strain the tea and drink it. Follow this remedy twice daily for effective results.
18. Coriander Seeds
Being natural diuretics, coriander seeds can help treat as well as prevent water retention in the body tissues. These seeds contain a high content of potassium which plays a significant role in releasing excess water from the body.
For this remedy, you can boil 3 tablespoons of coriander seeds in water for a few minutes. Then, turn off the heat and strain the tea. Let it cool down in room temperature for about 5 minutes and drink it slowly. Follow the remedy twice daily until you get the relief you really want.
19. Ice Packs
Water retention in body tissues can cause swelling. Local ice compress is very effective in reducing the swelling caused by water retention in the tissues. Wrap a few ice cubes in a clean cloth and place it on the swollen areas. Leave it for about 15 minutes. Follow the remedy on regular basis every day until you get rid of the condition.
Exercise can greatly treat water retention in a simple way. Partake in activities like walking, cycling, running and other sports that involve body movements. This will lead to sweating which will help in getting rid of excess water and salt from your body.
21. Epsom Salt
Epsom salt has soothing and calming effects that can help in relaxing your muscles and calming your nerves. Soaking in water with Epsom salt would help absorb excess fluids from the body. You only need to add 2 cups of Epsom salt to a bathtub warm water. Get in the water and soak for about 20 minutes. Follow this remedy thrice per week for the best results.
Onions contain cleansing properties that can help purify your blood and help in releasing excess water from the body. Onions can also prevent kidney problems such as the kidney stones.
You can cut a few onions into pieces, then add them to 4 cups of water and boil for a few minutes. Then, turn off the heat and add some honey to the mixture to improve the taste. Allow the mixture to cool at room temperature for a few minutes. Strain the tea and drink it. Follow this remedy twice daily for effective results.
23. Natural Diuretic Foods
Natural diuretic foods are very effective in eliminating excess water from the body tissues. These foods will also help in flushing out toxins and excess salts from the body thereby cleansing your blood. You should add natural diuretic foods to your diet daily for effective results. Some of these foods include grapes, pumpkin, cranberries, juniper berries, watermelon, and pineapple among many others.
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