Learning how to lose water weight and what to avoid to reduce water retention will help you stop bloating and be properly hydrated.
What is Bloating or Water Retention?
Bloating, or retaining unwanted, extra water weight, is a common problem often referred to by doctors as edema. It's evident in swollen legs, arms, abdomen, fingers and toes. Although the cells in our body are literally swimming in water--inside and out, the amount is regulated by the sodium in our body, our kidneys and our hormones. Sometimes for identifiable reasons and sometimes for no reason at all, our blood becomes saltier than normal and our cells will deliberately start to pull water into them to dilute the salt.
What Causes Water Retention?
Bloating can be very common for some people, and it will seem to come and go without reason most of their life. However, there are factors that you encounter daily that can contribute to water weight gain. Some of those contributors include:
- A high salt diet - many processed foods, sauces, snacks and desserts have hidden, high levels of salt that will not only make you thirstier, but also cause you to retain water.
- Steroid medications - cause the body to pull in more sodium, which leads to water retention.
- Hormones - in both males and females, an increase in estrogen will produce a surge in aldosterone that causes the kidneys to retain water. Hormonal bloating can affect pregnant women, menstruating women and menopausal women taking estrogen replacement hormones.
- Kidney problems - since our kidneys help regulate sodium and water intake, kidney function problems and diseases can cause water retention.
What Can You Do to Reduce Water Weight?
Bloating and water retention isn't simply a discomfort that you have to live with. Try some of the tips below to regulate your salt and hormones to decrease water retention.
- Exercise - engaging in cardiovascular exercise that gets your heart rate up and helps you sweat will also help your kidneys pump out that extra body fluid.
- Read labels - whenever your eating prepared snacks, soups, sauces, cereals or meals, read the ingredient labels to make sure your choices are not high in salt. The quickest way to retain water is through salty foods, so look for fresh over processed so you can control the salt.
- Try dietary supplements - both calcium and vitamin B6 have been found effective in relieving the bloating associated with menstrual, hormonal bloating. Consult your doctor for safe amounts.
- Add apple cider vinegar to your diet - it's good for kidney function and stimulates healthy digestion that can reduce bloating.
- Drink more water - dehydration can also be a cause of water retention. When your body thinks it's not getting enough needed water, it will beginning storing everything you intake as a precaution, causing bloating.
If these tips do not succeed in getting your bloating under control, be sure to consult your doctor for more information and assistance.