Natural diuretics are herbs or other plants used for their effect on the urinary tract and fluid balance. Diuretics are primarily used to eliminate excess fluid from body tissues, to flush the urinary tract in the treatment of urinary infections, and in detoxification of the body via increased excretion of waste products through the kidneys.
Diuretics used to increase the flow of urine to relieve water retention. A diuretic provides a means of forced diuresis which elevates the rate of urination. While natural diuretics remove fluids from the body, there is a possibility that other important vitamins and minerals may be flushed out as well. When using a natural diuretic it is essential to make sure you are getting enough nutrients to prevent the loss of electrolytes.
Diuretics work by making your kidneys excrete more sodium in the urine. The body then tries to balance out this increased amount of sodium concentration, by adding more water to the urine from the blood stream during the process of urine formation. By expelling the excess water in the urine there is now a decreased amount of fluid flowing through the blood vessels and pressure on the walls of the arteries is reduced.
Because urine formation is boosted, increased urination is an expected side effect of using any diuretics, other side effects may include dizziness, impotence, dehydration and, depending on the type of diuretic, an imbalance in potassium levels or a drastic decrease in sodium levels. If diuretics are not used properly it can lead to dehydration and potassium
Diuretics are often prescribed for people who are suffering from edema (the accumulation of fluids in the body tissues), as well as prescribed for people who have high blood pressure, Glaucoma, Urinary Tract Infections, heart disease, and women suffering from PMS.
Beverages containing caffeine and alcohol have a diuretic effect, and several other foods including celery, onion, eggplant, asparagus and watermelon are said to have a diuretic effect.
Examples of herbal diuretics include: