Fluid retention, also known as edema, is a medical condition caused by an accumulation of fluid in the bodily tissues. It usually comes as a result of an imbalance of liquids in the human body or hormonal imbalance. Our hormones regulate the level of fluids and electrolytes in the body. All liquids must be kept in delicate balance in order for the body to work – as soon as they drop or rise, you will experience many problems.
When we drink more water than our body needs, it’s not a problem as the excess is eliminated in the form of urine or sweat. However, some compounds can’t be eliminated when in excess, leading to liquid imbalance in the body and fluid retention.
Here are the 6 most common causes of edema:
1. Too Much Sodium
Sodium is a highly important mineral for our health, but too much of it can cause serious problems including fluid and hormonal imbalance. It’s easy to get an “overdose” of sodium since it’s present in all the foods we eat (especially processed foods), so make sure to read the labels of every food you buy.
2. Processed Food
As we already said, processed foods are full of sodium and other harmful compounds which can seriously damage our health. They are often full of sugar which is one of the main causes of hormonal imbalance and edema as well as other problems such as obesity.
3. Magnesium Deficiency
Lack of certain nutrients such as magnesium can accelerate the development of edema. Magnesium is one of the most important minerals for our health, playing a role in over 300 processes. Unfortunately, we’re often lacking it due to the lack of this vital mineral in our soil and food. You can find all the magnesium you need in avocados, spinach, whole grains, dry fruit, and nuts and seeds.
4. Vitamin B6 Deficiency
Not having enough vitamin B6 in your body can cause fluid retention and a host of other problems, so make sure to keep its levels under control. You can find this important vitamin in eggs, pistachios, potatoes, chicken, tuna, sunflower seeds, and bananas.
5. Potassium Deficiency
Potassium is a vital mineral for our health and muscles as well as for the delicate balance of fluids in our body. Make sure to keep its levels in check by consuming white beans, bananas, swiss chard, tomatoes, orange juice (freshly squeezed), beets, parsnips, and spinach more frequently.
Not drinking enough water will leave you dehydrated and cause fluid retention and even more serious problems. Drink 8-10 glasses of water every day in order to prevent dehydration and edema as well.
Other Tips to Prevent Fluid Retention
Exercising will boost your blood circulation better than anything else and allow the excess fluids in your body to be eliminated in the form of urine or sweat.
At the same time, you need to adjust your diet and consume fresh fruits and vegetables more often to boost your flavonoid levels and prevent the accumulation of fluids in your tissues.
Additionally, make sure to avoid tight clothing which restricts your muscles and circulation, reduce your salt consumption and elevate your legs on a pillow or something similar when resting to accelerate the movement of fluids and prevent edema.