Water retention, edema, bloating. Uncomfortable health challenges that much too many people suffer with. But what exactly constitutes water retention? When one has too much fluid that has accumulated in body cavities and tissues, we must understand this is the body’s cry for help from a problem of imbalances and not enough water. If we do not feed the body enough water, it tries to compensate by retaining fluid causing these levels to go out of balance.
What are some other health issues related to water retention/edema? Liver problems, kidney problems, circulation, blood pressure, pre-menstrual issues, and pregnancy problems. All these are associated.
How do you know if your symptoms are caused from retaining water? If you have and feel swollen ankles, feet and hands, and your belly feels as if it is bulging (also caused from wearing tight clothing) then you could be retaining water. If you see a significant shift in the way your clothing fits one day, then very tight and fitted the next, head feels heavy and achy, then your bloating is probably hormone induced also related to menopausal changes or PMS (most definitely if suffering from estrogen dominance). Constipation, lack of exercise, allergy symptoms, and even weather and climate changes can have an impact on water retention.
So what are the causes of holding on to so much fluid? Serious dieting and weight control can cause one to remove foods from the diet that provided the body with natural water. Diet imbalances are direct causes if they are ones that include red meat, too much salty food, MSG, not enough B complex vitamins, potassium, and most definitely water retention will occur is you have a diet with not enough protein. You could also be suffering with dehydration. Pharmaceutical diuretics, birth control pills, alcohol, and steroidal drugs all cause dehydration.
If you are suffering with chronic edema, consider circulatory problems (such as spider veins and varicose veins), kidney, bladder and liver challenges. Natural herbal therapies are known to balance metabolism and body chemistry to correct the challenge rather than just helping the body to release fluids.
If your water retention stems from Kidney/Bladder challenges then consider there is an emotion root cause. Kidney issues also stem from harboring specific negative emotions. The two main emotions that affect the Kidneys are:
- Fear (TCM – Traditional Chinese Medicine)
- Unresolved Forgiveness (Holistic Medicine)
Understand please, Family and Friends, that holding on to and harboring these emotions of Fear and Unresolved Forgiveness is to surely weaken the kidneys and eventually one will begin to experience physical signs of kidney problems. If you know you are holding on to these very emotions, the good news is, strengthening and balancing the kidneys helps you in turn feel strong enough to let go of these emotions.
12 Physical signs of Kidney problems:
- lines under the eyes
- purple, deep, dark circles under the eyes
- puffy eyes
- fluid retention
- constant lower back pain
- frequent, painful urination
- weak bones (TCM)
- fatigue specifically between 3pm and 7pm
- fevers, chills, trembling
- high blood pressure
- a dull constant ache in the lower back may indicate kidney stones
- ear problems, hearing loss, chronic ear infections (in adults and children)
A diet that is mainly vegetarian, low in starch and high in plant based-protein is best to prevent water retention. Dark green vegetables and fruits like lemons, limes, and grapefruits are foods that alkaline the body and help as well.
Eliminate the following: fried foods, salty and sugary foods, caffeine foods, and carbonated beverages which impede the kidney from filtering waste. Avoid dairy foods, starches, fats and heavy grains since these cause clogging and mucous.
Use the following combined for flushing support, to normalize and balance the whole body and the most vital organs from a Chinese medicine perspective, and increase kidney activity: