According to the US National Institute of Health, bloating is a condition in which the stomach swells up soon after a meal. It happens due indigestion caused due to an excess production of gas, disturbances in the muscles of the digestive system. Bloating can not only be uncomfortable, but also painful.
Water retention is caused due to the accumulation of liquids inside the body. Bloating occurs in the circulatory system, cavities and tissues of the body.
It can result in swelling of hands, feet and ankles. Women suffer from water retention mainly during pregnancy and before their periods. People who have a sedetary lifestyle may also suffer from the same.
Water retention may affect you after you have sat through your long office hours or a long flight. Many times, water retention can be a cause of a medical condition like kidney disease or heart related issues.
If you experience water retention suddenly, you may want to consult a doctor. But people who are more prone to water retention every now and then can follow these tips to prevent the condition.
Cut Down on Salt
Salt has two components- sodium and chloride. Sodium is responsible for binding the water in the body to maintain a balance of fluids inside and outside the body.
Excess salt present in processed and refined foods can lead to water retention.
You must keep a check on such foods and avoid extra salty food. According to the US NIH, increased salt intake in foods can lead to increase in water retention.
Eat Magnesium Rich Foods
Magnesium is one of the minerals found in food which is not only beneficial but has enzymic reactions in the body that are beneficial for the normal functioning of the body.
According to US NIH, 200 mg of magnesium in foods everyday can reduce water retention in women during PMS.
Therefore, you can go ahead and increase the intake of magnesium-rich foods like nuts, leafy green vegetables, dark chocolate, legumes, whole grains, etc
Eat Vitamin-B6 Rich Foods
Vitamin B6 is believed to have several health benefits, like it increases the levels of serotonin and dopamine during PMS and reduces the symptoms of water retention.
Deficiency of this nutrient can make the kidneys absorb more salt from the body resulting in kidney diseases and water retention.
Foods rich in vitamin B6 include pork, soya beans, brown rice, red meat, peanuts, wheat, bananas, etc
Increase Your Potassium Intake
According to the AHA, 98% of the people in U.S. eat foods which have excess of salt and the only way to counteract the resulting water retention issue is to increase the potassium levels in the body. Potassium helps the body get rid of the excess sodium through urination and prevents water rention.
Avoid Refined Carbs
Carbohydrates are necessary for providing energy to the body but they are must not be consumed through refined food sources like pizza, bread, white rice, tortilla, etc.
According to the US NIH, for every gram of carb stored in the body 2-3 grams of water is retained in the body too.
According to the PubMed Central, these foods also increase the insulin resistance and make the kidneys absorb more sodium. So, keep a track of your carbs and try to include a low-carb diet.
Drink Water and Keep Moving
According to the PubMed Central drinking more water can also help reduce water retention.
So, make sure to drink 8 glasses of water everyday. Moving around even for a walk or jog can go a long way. The elevation of your feet gets rid of the fluid accumulation in the lower limbs.
You can make these changes in your dietary lifestyle and maintain an active life as well, but if you still experience water retention, seek medical help.