Water retention can be an uncomfortable situation because your body is carrying extra pounds of water weight. Often, you can reduce your excess water weight by avoiding salty foods and choosing foods to reduce bloating. However, there are many possible causes of water retention, so check with your doctor if you have concerns.
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, asparagus, parsley, beets, green beans, onions and leeks are natural diuretics, which means that they encourage the loss of water weight from your body. Leafy green vegetables, such as spinach and kale, and seaweed may also be beneficial because of their B vitamins. Cucumbers and celery may act as a natural diuretic because of their high water content. Salt can cause water retention, and most vegetables are low in sodium.
The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends pumpkin, grapes and pineapple as natural foods for fighting water retention. Watermelon is another good choice because of its high amount of water. Most fruit is nearly sodium-free, and many kinds are high in potassium, which works against the water-retaining effects of sodium. Because of their water content, fresh fruits are better choices than dried fruits for getting rid of water weight.
Herbs and Spices
Some herbs, such as dandelion and ginger, can help you get rid of water weight. Celery seed and garlic may also be effective. Herbs and spices can also help you get rid of water weight if you use them to flavor your food instead of salt or salty seasonings, which are high in sodium. Talk to your doctor before using herbal supplements or remedies, because they can interact with medications.
Staying hydrated can prevent or reduce bloating, and you should aim for at least eight glasses of water per day. Other steps you can take are to avoid trans fats from fried foods and processed snack foods, choose lean proteins instead of fatty meats and reduce your intake of high-sugar foods. Getting rid of water weight is not a substitute for a healthy weight loss program if you are overweight, so your doctor if you have concerns about your health or weight.
- University of Maryland Medical Center; Edema; Steven Ehrlich; March 2010
- University of Maryland Medical Center; Dandelion; Steven Ehrlich; December 2008
- University of Maryland Medical Center; Celery Seed; Steven Ehrlich; November 2008
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010; January 2010