Causes of Water Retention and How to Lose Weight

A tape measure used for weight management and sewing

Causes of Water Retention and How to Lose Weight

Simply put, water retention is the buildup of excess water in the body. It’s also referred to as edema and it’s common in pregnant women and people with high blood pressure among others. The water retention typically occurs in the circulatory system which is why it manifests itself in swollen limbs from the hands to the legs, especially around the ankles. 

Related: What are the Best Foods for Gut Health? 

Causes of water retention

Water retention may be a result of a health issue or not. Causes of water retention include:


Water retention can be caused by eating heavily salted foods. Foods high in salt or sodium content can wreak havoc on the balance of fluids in the boy’s cells and tissues resulting in water retention. The body tends to hold on to water for longer if it has too much sodium. Unfortunately, the average person takes over 3,400 milligrams of salt which is way above the recommended intake of sodium that needs to be 2,300 milligrams. 

Apart from table salt, consuming processed foods like sausages, cheeses, frozen meals and soups, deli meats and savory snacks exposes people to very high levels of sodium.

Lack of activity

For example, standing or sitting for extended periods of time can cause edema. Sedentary office jobs are leading causes of inactivity so it’s recommended to have an activity planned early or later on in the day that increases one’s heart rate and helps with circulation. 

A sedentary lifestyle causes a spike in blood pressure within the capillaries resulting in the body fluids leaving the capillaries at a high rate. Because of the high rate of removal, the fluid doesn’t get a chance to seep back into the cells so it continues to accumulate outside the cell and cause swelling.

A Man rides a BMX bike at a skate park

Menstrual cycle and pregnancy

With the menstrual cycle comes hormonal changes in the body, which can result in fluid retention. Because of the decrease in progesterone and estrogen, the balance of fluids in the body is thrown off kilter for the duration of the menses. This results in fluid retention in the lower abdomen and in the limbs for some women because the two hormones regulate fluid balance in a woman’s body.

Edema in pregnancy may not be such a bad thing because it helps the body soften and expand in preparation for the arrival of the baby.

 In pregnancy fluid retention is manifested by swelling in the legs, hands, and face. Serious edema in pregnancy can be as a result of dehydration, wearing tight clothes, standing for long and eating highly salted foods.

Medication and diseases

Certain drugs have edema as a side effect; including high blood pressure, nonsteroidal inflammatory and corticosteroids drugs. Some of these drugs increase the amount of sodium in the body by impeding COX-2 natriuretic effect resulting in a spike in blood pressure and subsequent fluid retention. Diseases like kidney and heart disease can result in water retention because these conditions disrupt the workings of the circulatory system.

Related: Best Liver Cleanse - Tips and Tricks

How to Lose Water Weight

Losing water weight can be easier than losing body fat but it must be approached with caution so that the body maintains healthy fluid balance throughout the process. These are the healthiest ways to lose weight.

Two glasses of water

Exercise and hydration

Exercise lets out excess water causing the water weight to drop. The drop can be visible but the body regulates the loss of water so that one doesn’t suffer from dehydration. However, it’s important to keep hydrated during the exercise even though it may seem out of place to keep drinking water when one is trying to get rid of excess fluid. 

The body will find its balance from exercising and by drinking water one keeps hydrated. Plus dehydration only serves to encourage the body to retain water instead of prompting it to expel.


Pills container with pills

New Day Health Shed H20 Natural Diuretic Water Pill

Traditionally water pills have been fronted as an excellent solution but they can’t be used in the long term. Instead one needs to find natural, organic options like an herbal remedy that can fight off bloating and the swelling that accompanies water retention. Such a supplement contains potassium ingredients that support optimal fluid balance facilitating faster weight loss. 

A supplement of this nature can help with naturally balancing the fluids and sodium levels in the body and it can be used alongside diet and exercise for optimum results. Try New Day Health’s Shed H20 if you’re looking for a natural herbal solution to bloating and water retention.

Related: What is Ojibwa Tea and What Are Its Benefits? 

Change Your Diet

Reducing the intake of sodium high foods and adding salt at the table are some of the steps one can take to kick out excess water and lose weight. Also, minimize the intake of carbohydrates as these types of foods have a tendency to promote water retention. Unused energy from carbohydrates is stored as glycogen and each gram of glycogen has 3 grams of water attached to it. Burning the carbohydrates releases the water which is used up leading to less water retention. But the best thing is to keep the carb consumption at a minimum to prevent water retention in the first place.

The change in diet should incorporate more healthy foods that are rich in water and low sodium. Fruits and vegetables are excellent for this purpose. Fruits like bananas and avocados are rich in potassium which has been proven to help regulate healthy fluid retention. They are also excellent in mitigating the high sodium levels in the body.

Related: Probiotics for Men vs Probiotics for Women


Although water weight isn’t something to alarm one it can signify an underlying problem that needs to be addressed. Seeing a doctor is always a great idea, especially when one begins to notice pitted edema, a condition where the skin appears very tight and swollen with a dimple being retained when hard pressed. This can be a symptom of a serious condition like hypertension and even heart failure.

For a natural solution to water retention, and stomach discomfort try New Day Health’s Natural Diuretic Water Pills

Read more

What are the best foods for gut health?

What are the best foods for gut health?

10 Effective Ways to Detoxify your Body

10 Effective Ways to Detoxify your Body

How to Detox from Sugar: Step by Step Guide

How to Detox from Sugar: Step by Step Guide