Beat The Bloat With These 10 Tips On How To Lose Water Weight

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While your body is made up of 60% water, sometimes it can retain too much water. This leads to frustrating rapid weight gain, fluctuations in weight, stiff joints, and extreme achiness. This discomfort is significant among the reasons why you need to know how to lose water weight.

Many factors, including lack of physical activity, hormonal changes, and diet, can cause uncomfortable, unattractive water retention. Keep reading this comprehensive guide to learn how to lose water weight quickly, safely, and effectively.

What Is Water Weight?

One of the most important parts of learning how to lose water weight is to understand what water weight is. Water retention, known medically as edema, is defined as an excess build-up of fluid. This can be noticed as swelling in your legs, ankles, hands, and feet. In extreme circumstances, edema can occur in your lungs or other vital organs. The fluid buildup can occur anywhere in your circulatory system, cavities, and tissues. Symptoms of water retention include:

  • Unexplained rapid weight fluctuations
  • Stiff joints
  • Swollen feet, hands, or ankles
  • Bloated lower abdomen
  • Painful appendages

Diagnosis

If you are unsure if you are suffering from water retention, visit your general health practitioner. She will conduct a physical examination and consider your medical history. She will also get a detailed picture of when your symptoms started, what triggers your painful swelling, and whether it is recurrent or consistent. She may also order blood or urine tests, liver or kidney function tests, a chest x-ray, or heart function tests like an ECG (electrocardiogram). This is to ensure you have no edema in key organs like your heart, liver, or kidneys. 

What Causes Water Weight?

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Many factors can cause water weight. For women, the two most common causes of water retention are pregnancy and the luteal phase of the menstrual cycle. Let's look at some of the most common causes of water weight:

Hormonal Changes

You Have Been on a Long-Haul Flight

Medical Conditions

Temperature Fluctuations

Processed Foods

Tips On How To Lose Water Weight And More

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As frustrating as it is to be bloated, there are several tried-and-true tips on how to lose water weight. These include sleeping more, exercising regularly, and eating less sodium.

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Sleep More

Sleep may be the most effective method for how to lose water weight. It minimizes water retention, controls hydration levels, and regulates your kidneys' sympathetic renal nerves. These nerves are crucial for keeping your water and sodium levels in balance. Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep nightly.

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Exercise Regularly

Both cardiovascular and strength building exercises are a great way to flush water out of your system through sweating. Besides this, for every gram of carbohydrates you have in your body, your body retains three to four grams of water.

If you ate too many carbs last night, you can look "soft" and puffy. Exercise, particularly aerobic exercise, burns carbs. Every four calories you burn is one gram of carbs. In other words, for every 100 calories you burn during exercise, you burn 25 grams of carbs and your body flushes out 75 to 100 grams of water besides what you lose from sweating.

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Meditate

Stress raises cortisol. Increased levels of cortisol in your body increases ADH, the antidiuretic hormone. ADH sends signals to your kidneys, controlling how much water is pumped back into your body. By meditating and keeping your stress to minimal levels, your body will not be flooded with cortisol or ADH and your body will maintain a healthy fluid balance.

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Take Electrolytes

Electrolytes, such as potassium and magnesium, are minerals with an electric charge. Chief among their role is regulating water balance. The more water you drink, the more electrolytes you need. Furthermore, you need additional electrolytes in your diet if you sweat a lot daily from exercise or living in a hot, humid environment. Try to get your electrolytes from natural sources such as milk and bananas rather than expensive supplements filled with hard-to-pronounce fillers.

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Watch Your Sodium Intake

Sodium is the most prevalent electrolyte in your body. It is a component of salt, or sodium chloride. If you eat processed food, you need to drink plenty of water to flush the excess sodium out of your body. The easiest way to regulate your sodium intake is to cut back on the processed food and drinks you consume.

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Drink More Water

This may seem counter-intuitive, but your body retains water if you are chronically dehydrated. This is to protect you from having too little water in your body. Dehydration affects every facet of your body, from fat loss and brain function to kidney and liver function. Drinking more water can protect your all around health.

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Take Caffeine Supplements

Caffeine has a diuretic effect, flushing excess water out of your body. Try to get your caffeine from carb-free sources such as black coffee or unsweetened tea. Many sodas also have caffeine, but they are also high in carbohydrates and sodium, both of which increase water retention. If you take caffeine tablets, make sure any painkillers you take do not also include caffeine. Taking too much caffeine at once can cause a caffeine crash and make you feel sleepy.

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Drink Dandelion Tea

Dandelion, known by herbalists as Taraxacum officinale, is an herb commonly used by bodybuilders for esthetic purposes and athletes to meet weight categories. Dandelion tea signals to your kidneys to flush out both excess water and sodium. Flushing out the sodium further helps you eliminate water retention. The effects of dandelion tea last for a five-hour period.

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Eat Healthy Foods

Potassium increases urine production and helps your body flush out excess sodium. Potassium-rich foods and herbs include:

  • Garlic
  • Hibiscus
  • Fennel
  • Nettle
  • Parsley
  • Horsetail
  • Corn silk
  • Beans
  • Bananas
  • Avocados
  • Dark green leafy vegetables like kale or spinach
  • Tomatoes
  • Yogurt and other dairy products

Magnesium is also crucial for regulating water levels in your body. Great sources of magnesium include dark chocolate, dark green leafy vegetables, whole grains, and nuts. If you need to know how to lose water weight for a weigh-in for a sport or a bodybuilding competition, temporarily cut out highly processed foods. Make sure you do not eat too much fiber for the number of calories you are consuming daily. If you have lactose intolerance, avoid bloating by cutting out dairy. Do not eat beans before your weigh-in, as these are extremely high in fiber.

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Cut Carbs

We have already touched on carbs in the exercise section. Carbs are stored in your liver and muscles as glycogen. They increase insulin, a hormone responsible for increasing sodium retention and causes your kidneys to reabsorb too much water. Try consuming the minimum amount of carbs you need to exercise effectively if you want to know how to lose water weight quickly for a weigh-in.

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Conclusion

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Water comprises 60% of our body and is crucial for our health. However, sometimes our diet and lifestyle causes us to retain water. Once you know how to lose water weight, maintaining a healthy balance of water in your body becomes simple. Causes of water retention include hormonal changes in your body, inactivity, poor diet, electrolyte imbalances, and increases in temperature. To combat water retention, exercise, eat a healthy balanced diet, and drink plenty of water.

Whether you need to lose water weight for a bodybuilding competition, meet a weight-class for a sporting event, or you just want a beach-ready body despite the sweltering temperature, the power is in your hands. Just remember to listen to your body and seek medical attention if you think your water retention may be a symptom of a serious medical condition.

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