Have you noticed that some days you just feel legit bloated even though you have been diligent with your healthy eating habits? Have you noticed a little puffier feet or fingers? Or maybe you’ve woken up to a suddenly increased number on your scale but you don’t know why?
It could be water weight!
Get Rid Of Water Weight 101
What Is Water Weight?
‘Water weight’ refers to the excess water stored in our cells and the area surrounding those cells. The most recurrent cause of gaining water weight is eating too many carbohydrates, or eating too much salt. Both of these habits result in water retention and make you feel bloated or puffy.
What Causes Water Weight
When we have a diet full of carbs, it makes us prone to retain water. According to several research studies, one gram of carbs needs up to four grams of water to process and store it! No wonder the scale fluctuates on a daily basis.
Moreover, excess salt can encourage water weight, too. This occurs because our bodies are designed to keep the optimal salt-to-water ratio in the body. If it didn’t do this, we would all get dehydrated. So, if you recently ate too many salty goodies, your body might be trying tp balance all this salt out by keeping more water inside your body.
It is important to note that there is a significant distinction between water retention and water weight. Water retention is linked to a diet too rich in sodium or specific hormonal or lifestyle change. Water weight is linked to our body’s main fuel source glycogen that’s necessary for keeping our health and energy up.
Other possible reasons to retain more water include air-plane flights, standing or sitting for prolonged times, menstrual cycle fluctuations, pregnancy and certain medications (according to Healthline and their trust-worthy sources).
How To Get Rid Of Water Weight Naturally
Even though water weight is not a major health issue, it can lead to constant bloating or puffiness which is uncomfortable, unpleasant and might simply ruin your mood! So here are a couple of natural and safe ways to lose water weight in a few days.
1. Increase hydration
It might sound counterintuitive, but drinking more water can help a lot with losing water weight. When your body is dehydrated, it is prone to hold on even more extra water (to counteract the effects of dehydration).
Giving your body more H2O allows it to release the excess stored water weight since dehydration is solved. Water can also boost kidney functions and permit both excess water and excess sodium to be eliminated from your system.
8 to 19 glasses of water are crucial for proper hydration levels, so drink up!
If it’s hard for you to remember to drink, having a nice water bottle can help as a reminder. I recently was looking for water bottles that aren’t made of plastic and stumbled upon a new kind – borosilicate glass water bottles:
They look absolutely adorable and they’re actually healthier than regular plastic water bottles (+ no weird taste as it happens with metal ones).
They all have a protective sleeve that comes in various colors so it’s easy to find the one that’s your favorite.
2. Review your salt intake
Adding too much salt to your meals can contribute to water retention (remember why? Sodium to water ratio in our bodies needs to be balanced, otherwise, important bodily functions will not work correctly).
Removing processed or junk foods from your diet can help in losing salt-related water weight. Also, eating foods packed with potassium can counteract the effects of salt pretty well! Focus on eating more vegetables and include bananas or avocados in your meals, as those come with the highest amounts of potassium.
3. Eat fewer carbs if possible
As mentioned above, carbohydrates are one of the main factors that generate water weight. Remove refined carb sources from your daily meals and replace those with healthy carbohydrate sources that are a little less starchy (fruits and non-starchy veggies always work the best).
No need to skip carbs altogether! They are an important source of energy for your body. Just try to choose healthy, unrefined carbohydrate sources and you will be good.
4. Eat more fiber foods
Fiber is a compound responsible for removing waste, excess nutrients (like salt), and water from our digestive system. If you have a diet that lacks fiber, you might end up gaining more water weight.
Keep in mind that our bodies do not process fiber, but rather allow it to pass through the intestines without breaking it down. The major role of this compound is to absorb as much water and waste as possible while traveling through the intestines. This is why a diet rich in fiber can aid a lot in dealing with water weight.
To increase your fiber consumption, consider eating more whole grains, whole-grain cereal or pasta, fruits, veggies, and various seeds.
5. Establish a workout routine
You can lose water weight faster if you commit to a workout routine as well.
When we exercise, our bodies lose water and weight through sweat. Moreover, exercise boosts blood flow and supports proper blood oxygenation which is also important for all the processes to run smoothly – including water balancing in your body.
(P. S. Hate exercising? Here’s how to fall in love with it.)
6. Eat more B6 and magnesium-rich foods
Vitamin B6 and magnesium can aid in dealing with water weight. These two compounds support kidney functions and aid the body in removing excess water and sodium. Several research studies revealed that taking those two supplements can significantly diminish water weight.
You can try eating more foods containing these healthy microelements:
Foods high in B6: Salmon, tuna, milk, eggs, lean beef, carrots, spinach, green peas, bananas.
Foods high in magnesium: Avocados, dark chocolate, nuts, legumes, tofu, seeds, whole grains, fatty fish.
You can also take them as a form of supplement. Just make sure to consult your physician to get the right dosage you need for your height, weight, and age.
7. Get more sleep
As with all of our body’s issues, sleep disruptions can worsen existing problems. Some studies have underlined that there is a connection between proper sleep and proper body hydration. So, to diminish extra water weight, it is highly recommended to get more sleep.
A good night’s sleep can boost hydration and lower the amounts of water you retain. 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night are a minimum.
When it comes to getting rid of water weight, it is rather crucial to determine the exact reason why you are retaining water. It might happen because your diet is too rich in salt or because you don’t exercise. You might be too stressed or you might have too many processed foods.
Try implementing these simple changes and see how you feel. If you find yourself still retaining water and feeling bloated, it is best to ask for advice from your medical practitioner. Together you can find the exact reason why you retain water and get a personalized plan to deal with it quickly and safely!