How can I avoid water retention

What to do with water retention

Heavy legs, swollen feet, fat fingers? The jeans are too tight, the shoes suddenly pinch and the wedding ring pinches - the body stores water. This is shown by swelling and increased body weight.

Inquired: What is water retention?

If fluid builds up in the tissue, doctors speak of it Edema. The ankles, legs, fingers, face or stomach are often affected. In principle, water retention can occur anywhere, including in organs.

They develop due to excess pressure in the smallest blood or lymph vessels. The overpressure causes fluid to leak into the surrounding tissue. Ultimately, edema is an indication that the functionality of the body's own fluid balance is disturbed.

Already knew?

The designation "Edema" comes from the Greek. "Oidema" means "swelling" or "swelling". Another term for this phenomenon is "Dropsy".

Women are more prone to edema than men because they have weaker connective tissue.

Special form of lipedema

TheLipedema is a fat distribution disorder in the extremities. The fat increases symmetrically on both legs and possibly also on the buttocks and arms. Feet and hands are left out. The upper body, on the other hand, is rather slim, so that the person affected appears disproportionate. In addition, water is stored in the fabric. There is a clear tendency to bruise. The disease progresses untreated and leads to an increased formation of adipose tissue.

Causes: How does water retention occur?

The causes that contribute to the development of edema are very diverse. On the one hand, they are hormonal, on the other hand, wrong lifestyle habits or serious illnesses can be behind water retention.

Already knew?

Estrogens promote water retention. As a result, edema develops, especially in women.

The estrogen level rises just before ovulation. The body stores water. This makes the skin smoother and softer. Women take up to theirs period up to 2 kilograms of body weight due to the build-up. As the estrogen level falls, body weight falls again. In the Menopause there is a permanent excess of estrogen. Women gain weight. But the body no longer breaks down the water just like that.

  • Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS): One of the most common causes of edema is cycle-related hormonal fluctuations. The body stores fluids in the tissue, especially before the menstrual period.
  • Pregnancy:Swollen legs, feet or hands towards the end of pregnancy are typical. This is due to the hormone-related changes in the connective tissue.
  • Menopause: The excess of estrogen at the beginning of the menopause often leads to water retention.
  • Wrong diet:Salt and sugar bind water and promote swelling. Alcohol and caffeine also have a negative effect on the water balance. We're dehydrated. To create a counterbalance, our body stores more fluid.
  • Sedentary lifestyle:Sitting or standing for long periods of time as well as little movement are factors that aggravate the formation of edema.
  • Diseases:Diseases such as lymph drainage and fat distribution disorders or thyroid, kidney and heart problems trigger water retention.
  • Heat:As blood vessels expand at high temperatures and the heart pumps blood through the veins more slowly, the pressure increases. This blocks the lymph flow and leads to swelling.

Getting Rid of Water Retention: How to Stop Edema Development

As long as the edema is harmless water retention that is not caused by the disease, you have a variety of options to declare war on the unsightly areas.

  • Move! This will keep your circulation going and promote blood circulation. Even walks increase the vein activity and stimulate the body's own reflux.
  • Kneipp baths with alternating warm and cold water also stimulate blood circulation. Through the Alternating showers the veins pump more blood back to the heart.
  • Also Elevate your legs is a proven remedy against the formation of edema. Just lie down on your back on the floor. Your lower legs belong on a chair.
  • Change eating habits. Reduce your salt, alcohol and coffee consumption. Take it foods containing potassium like potatoes, rice, fennel, lettuce or strawberries. These have a draining effect. Also help Drainage teas like nettle tea or green tea, which are also high in potassium.

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If the veins are weak, compression stockings can help. For edema caused by the heart or kidneys, the doctor prescribes water medication (diuretics).


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As of:14.12.2020

For reasons of better legibility, the male form is used in the text for personal designations. It goes without saying, however, that the information relates to members of both sexes.