Edema is the medical term for swelling. Edema results whenever small blood vessels become "leaky" and release fluid into nearby tissues. The extra fluid accumulates, causing the tissue to swell. This medical condition causes puffiness and swelling in many areas of the body, including legs, arms, feet, hands, lungs, heart, or stomach area. Sometimes, it develops because of hormonal problems. Other times, it may develop because of pregnancy, certain medicines or health problems. While several medical conditions or medications may contribute to edema, another risk factor is malnutrition or poor nutrition. Edema may not always be caused by dietary factors, but your diet always does influence the severity of the condition and the outcome. Hence, it is important to include dietary changes to reduce edema-related swelling. Following a healthy diet and avoiding certain foods that contain high amounts of sodium may help treat edema.

How to Get Rid of Edema Naturally Through Diet

Avoid High-Sodium Foods

Avoid eating foods that are high in salt or sodium. These foods may make your body retain even more water and can exacerbate edema in certain individuals. This is because high salt foods can make the problem of water retention even worse. One way is to stop adding salt to food and also reduce the amount of processed foods you eat, as these often contain large amounts of salt. Limit your intake of salty foods such as prepackaged snacks, fried food and fast food. You should also avoid frozen fruits and vegetables because these are usually high in sodium content as well. Restrict salt intake to below 2100 mg of sodium per day. Just like canned vegetables, processed meats also contain significant amounts of sodium. 
You should avoid consuming luncheon meats, sausage, bacon, hot dogs, ham, and canned tuna. Canned legumes might also contain high levels of sodium, so prepare your own stuff using dried beans to limit your sodium consumption. You should also avoid salted nuts and choose unsalted nuts instead. Processed dairy foods contain significant amounts of sodium, so it should be avoided if you have edema. You should also avoid buttermilk and eat only fresh dairy products. Reduce the amount of salt that you use while cooking. Cook with other seasonings like lemon juice, vinegar, herbs, and pepper. Avoid cooking with monosodium glutamate (MSG), baking soda, baking powder, or salty seasonings like bouillon cubes, cooking sherry, cooking wine, chili sauce, meat tenderizer, seasoned salts, soy sauce, steak sauce, or Worcestershire sauce. These products contain lots of sodium and may worsen edema.

Have a Healthy Diet

To treat edema, focus on a balanced diet a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and other healthy foods can help reduce inflammation. Fish, seafood, fruit, vegetables, nuts, sunflowers, beans, peas, potatoes, almonds, and whole grains are beneficial. Use oils and food that contain omega-3-fatty acids and mono-unsaturated fatty acids. Eat a diet that gives you enough protein, calories, and carbohydrates. Ask your doctor or dietician for help choosing the right combination of foods.

High-Fiber and Protein Rich Diet

A diet high in fiber and protein-rich foods, such as turkey, chicken, whitefish and eggs, may be helpful in treating your edema. Cottage cheese, kefir and low-fat yogurt may also be beneficial in addressing this health problem. Red meat has earned its bad reputation for a reason. It's higher in cholesterol and salt, which can trigger inflammation. Eat fewer red meats and more lean meats, if you're absolutely craving a steak; opt for grass-fed beef. It's higher in healthy omega acids. To get your protein, switch to fish – like salmon, snapper, tuna, cod, halibut, and bass – that are high in omega-3 fatty acid, tofu (soy, if no allergy), or beans.

Eat Potassium Rich Foods

If you are taking certain diuretics, your health care provider may give you specific instructions about getting different nutrients into your diet, such as potassium. Eating potassium-rich foods can actually help to reduce the sodium (salt) levels stored in the body and so may improve the edema. Potassium helps eliminate excess fluid from the body, so eat a few extra bananas, raisins, tomato paste, avocadoes, spinach and juice, white beans, soybeans, and kidney beans. You should not take potassium supplement tablets though.

Eliminate Food Allergens

You can have an allergist or other healthcare provider test you for food allergies or recommend a diet which eliminates certain foods to reduce your edema. Eliminating suspected food allergens, such as dairy (milk, cheese, and ice cream), wheat (gluten), soy, corn, preservatives, and chemical food additives may help your edema. This will reduce inflammation that may be confused with, or compounding, edema.

Reduce Trans Fatty Acids

You can also try reducing or eliminating trans fatty acids, found in commercially baked goods such as cookies, crackers, cakes, French fries, onion rings, donuts, processed foods, and margarine.

Eat More Vitamin B and Iron Rich Foods

Eating foods high in B-vitamins and iron, such as whole grains (if no allergy), dark leafy greens (such as spinach and kale), and sea vegetables can help alleviate edema. Particularly Vitamin B6 is a natural diuretic; vitamin B6 at 50 mg twice daily may help.

Diuretic Foods

Eat foods that act as natural diuretics like vegetables, including celery, artichokes, asparagus, cabbage, parsley, beets, green beans, leafy greens, pumpkin, onion, leeks, and garlic. Some of these foods may interact with diuretic medications. Other options include green tea, cranberry juice, pineapple, grapes and oats. Dandelion greens help the body metabolizes extra fluids and is also a great option when you have edema.

Antioxidant Foods

Antioxidants are powerful nutrients that reduce the development of particular diseases and can improve. Antioxidants inhibit oxidation inside the body and help cells achieve their optimum potential. Antioxidants help protect your body from damage and they also promote the proper function of your entire body, including your edema. They are also great in keeping one healthy and boosting the immune system. Eat antioxidant foods, such as blueberries, cherries, tomatoes, squash, and bell peppers. Consuming such antioxidant rich fruits and vegetables will help your body to fight the problem of water retention. They contain a wealth of vitamins and minerals, but they're also a good source of antioxidants. These can help your body eliminate toxins that may be contributing to edema.

Increase Your Water Intake

Make sure that you drink plenty of water every day. Many people believe that if your body is retaining water, consuming more water will make it worse. But dehydration can aggravate edema. Drinking plenty of water helps your body flush out toxins and salt.  It also gets rid of excess fluid in the body. Your daily water intake should be at least 8 to 10 glasses. Continue to drink the same amount of water and fluids as normal. Your doctor may have you limit this amount if you have severe edema.

Use Healthy Cooking Oils

Use healthy cooking oils, such as olive oil. It's incomparably rich in oleic acid, an omega-9 fatty acid that keeps inflammation down. Ditch the vegetable oil for healthier options like olive, grape seed, and avocado oils. Use extra virgin olive oil in cooking and on salads and get your food working faster for you. It's good for your heart and your brain, too.

Natural Fitness Tips
Natural Fitness Tips

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