ema is the abnormal accumulation of excess fluid in the body. This shows as swelling underneath the skin in one or more areas of the body.
Therefore, swelling or edema occurs when excess fluid builds up in the body and this is caused by water retention. It may be caused by aging blood vessels which lose their elasticity. Edema is also a common occurrence during pregnancy. Furthermore, it can be a sign of other health conditions that may include heart failure and diabetes.
Treatment of edema typically consists of diuretics. Diuretics help in the removal of excess fluid through increased urination. A diuretic can be a food, a herb, or a drug.
Diuretics help by removing salt (sodium) and water from the body. They work because they prevent the kidneys from re-absorbing sodium back from the fluid that is passed out as urine.
With sodium left in the fluid built up in the kidneys, the osmotic pressure prevents the reabsorption of water into blood circulation. This consequently reduces the amount of fluid flow through your blood vessels, and alternately reduces pressure on the walls of your arteries.
The removal of sodium, chloride, and water from the body is somewhat difficult.
For one, other ions besides sodium and chloride are removed along with water. Minerals such as calcium and potassium are filtered out of the blood and into the kidney nephron where they are also lost in the urine fluid.
Basically, diuretics increase the volume of urine excreted from the body, subsequently reducing the amount of excess fluids built up in body.
Foods may have diuretic properties too. There are two ways in which foods can increase diuresis and reduce swelling.
First, foods may contain phytochemicals with diuretic properties. The caffeine found in cocoa, tea leaves, yerba mate and coffee is a good example of foods in this class.
Alternatively, foods with high water content can also increase urination and the rate of detoxification. The increase in fluid intake from this food signals the body to release hormones that prevent the reabsorption of water from the kidneys. This translates directly to diuresis.
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For instance, people with high blood pressure benefit from diuretics as a result of your body getting rid of unnecessary water and salt.
Reducing the salt levels in your body reduces your blood sugar and takes strain away from the heart.
Lots of heart conditions are treated using diuretic supplements, or ‘water pills’ as they are called.
Kidney and liver problems are also treated with similar medication, helping the body rid itself of substances it doesn’t need regularly throughout the day.
If you’re looking to improve your health and keep your blood sugar in check, consuming diuretic foods on top of a healthy diet, combined with regular exercise, could be a great option.
Take a look at these 11 foods that are natural diuretics.