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What is Water Weight and Ways to Reduce Bloating

What is Water Weight and Ways to Reduce Bloating
Dr. Constance Odom, MD Picture of Dr. Constance Odom, MD

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Written by our editorial team.

Last Edited 7 min read

Water is essential to the human body. Without it, bodily processes would slow, and many organs would begin to shut down. Bodily processes, such as kidney function, will begin to deteriorate without water. If the kidneys do not receive enough water, waste and acids accumulate, causing your kidneys to get clogged. 

So, what is water weight, and how does it affect your body? According to health experts, the human body can survive for several weeks without food, but it can survive for only three days without water. However, consuming a lot of water can lead to weight gain

According to WebMD, water weight gain isn’t technically real weight gain. Instead, it is often the result of consuming too much salt or a lot of water. Consuming too much sodium causes your body to retain excess weight, so it is not weight brought on by the overconsumption of food. Water weight is often the result of bloating. You gain water weight when extra fluid builds up in the body. This fluid is distributed to different parts of the body, including the face, stomach, and the bladder. 

  Other possible causes of water weight gain include water retention before a menstrual cycle or during pregnancy. Changes in hormone levels can trigger your body to hold onto extra fluids. People who are not physically active are especially prone to weight gain resulting from fluid buildup. People who fly on planes or are unable to walk tend to retain fluid in their lower legs. This accumulation leads to weight gain. The weight gained is due to the accumulation of fluid in the body, instead of fat. When this happens, water goes to an area called the third space. The third space is a term used to describe fluid that accumulates in other organs, such as the intestines, membranes between the chest cavity and lungs, and spaces between organs, according to Medical News Today

Water weight is temporary, and the weight gained will come off when those fluids are eliminated from the body. Consuming too much water can also lead you to weigh more than you normally do. Water weight, also called water retention, is an excess buildup of water in the body. This leads to weight gain. This fluid is distributed throughout the body, often going to areas such as the kidneys and legs. Weight gain from water can result from a number of factors. Those who sit for long periods of time are likely to gain water weight in their lower extremities, such as the feet. It is crucial to have excess water in the body. Excess water weight is often distributed to the wrong places, leading to water retention and weight gain. Water is essential to survival. However, too much of it can cause problems. 

When there is too much excess water in the body, that water goes to areas between fat and cells that are required for normal body functioning. Water has weight, so an accumulation of it leads to weight gain in places that it wouldn’t normally go. Excess water weight can also be caused by malnutrition, certain medications, and allergies. Some medications, such as birth control pills, anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and corticosteroids also cause fluid to build up in the body. 

According to WebMD, you can do a number of things to shed water weight and reduce bloating. These include becoming more active, consuming more potassium, and drinking more water. While drinking more water may seem counterproductive, drinking more helps the body eliminate sodium and extra fluids that lead to weight gain. Experts recommend drinking a total of two to three liters of water each day. 

Another way to eliminate fluids is to eat foods that contain water. By doing this, your body becomes hydrated without you having to drink a lot of extra fluids. Another effective way to shed excess water weight is to consume more fiber. Your body doesn’t retain too much water when you consume a lot of fiber. Plus, it aids in digestion, making it easier to eliminate waste that can lead to weight gain. 

Abdominal bloating can lead to weight gain, and is a common complaint. According to Pubmed, abdominal distention and bloating are two of the most common gastrointestinal problems. Symptoms of abdominal bloating include pressure in the abdomen, a feeling of fullness, and trapped gas. Also called stomach distension, bloating causes stomach size to temporarily increase. These symptoms can happen separately or at the same time. Abdominal bloating can be caused by other factors, including gastrointestinal disorders, constipation, and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Intolerance to certain foods may also be to blame. 

However, there are many other ways to reduce bloating. According to Brigham and Women’s Hospital, one of the best ways to reduce bloating is to change your diet. According to experts, a number of foods help decrease bloating. These include avocados, berries, and cucumbers. Avocados are rich in Vitamins K, Vitamin C, and folate. They also contain a lot of potassium, which helps regulate the natural balance of fluid in the body. They help food move slowly through your digestive system, which helps keep you regular.   

Cucumbers are also good for bloating, because they are 95 percent water. Cucumbers are effective in reducing bloating, because they also keep your body from retaining water. Berries are another great food that reduces bloating. Berries are packed with antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins, and are a great source of fiber. One cup of blackberries contains almost eight grams of fiber.

Yogurt is another great food that helps relieve bloating. Yogurt contains probiotics, a type of bacteria that helps you maintain good gut health. This bacterium improves digestion. Yogurt can also help people with irritable bowel syndrome, because it reduces bloating and abdominal distension that is associated with IBS. Bananas are effective in reducing bloating, because they are high in fiber. One banana contains three grams of fiber. They are also high in potassium, which helps the body balance fluid naturally. 

  Asparagus is another food that reduces bloating. It is rich in fiber. One cup of asparagus contains a whopping three grams of fiber. It is also high in inulin, a probiotic fiber found in many foods. Inulin helps improve gut health, because it helps prevent constipation. Constipation alone can cause your stomach to become distended.

Oats also help with bloating. Oats are filled with fiber. There are eight grams of fiber in one cup of oats. Eating a bowl of hot oatmeal can help aid in digestion and relieve bloating. Oats also contain beta glucan, a type of fiber that contains “anti-inflammatory properties.” 

Apples also reduce bloating. They have a high potassium and water content, which helps keep you hydrated and maintains a healthy fluid balance. High in fiber, apples contain roughly five grams of fiber per serving. They are especially high in pectin, a soluble fiber that speeds up the movement of food through the digestive tract. Pectin is very effective in reducing bloating. It also helps relieve constipation. Constipation alone can cause nausea. 

One of the best ways to reduce bloating is to go for a walk. Physical activity gets the bowels moving and helps you expel excess stool and gas. This gets rid of gas that builds up in your system and provides fast relief. 

Engaging in yoga activities is also a great way to reduce bloating. Many yoga poses get the stomach in a position that targets abdominal muscles and causes the body to expel gas. This relieves bloating. Squat exercises are also good, because they help relieve gas buildup quickly. Some experts say abdominal massage is good for relieving bloating. The abdomen is massaged during an abdominal massage. With this massage, you place your hands above the right hip bone and rub in a circular motion, while placing light pressure on the right side of the ribcage. You also rub straight across the abdomen and near the left hip bone. 

There are also many long-term solutions to reduce bloating. Gradually increasing your fiber intake will help alleviate bloating. When you consistently eat a high fiber diet, you minimize fluid and waste buildup. 

Health experts also recommend not chewing gum. Gum contains chewing alcohols, which can cause bloating. Instead of chewing gum for fresh breath, experts recommend using ginger mints or peppermints to freshen your breath. 

Another way to reduce bloating long-term is to eat at regular intervals. Because many people experience bloating after a meal, experts recommend eating several smaller meals throughout the day. This helps regulate the digestive system and keeps waste moving in your system. You can also put yourself on a low salt diet. Salt causes your body to retain water, which can lead to weight gain from excess water buildup. 

When there is an excess amount of water in your body, it can cause your body to become puffy in multiple areas. Water can build up especially in the legs, arms, and abdomen. This can lead your weight to fluctuate between two and four pounds per day.

To avoid bloating, you should also examine any nutritional substances you are taking, such as iron tablets. Iron supplements in particular are known for causing constipation. If you are taking any supplements that slow down digestion, it is a good idea to stop taking them. Some supplements can cause indigestion. 

However, there may be cases where you may need to see a doctor. You should see a doctor if you’re experiencing diarrhea, appetite changes, or severe abdominal pain.

  

12 Sources 

Nu Image Medical has strict sourcing guidelines to ensure our content is accurate and current. We rely on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We strive to use primary sources and refrain from using tertiary references. 

https://www.brighamandwomens.org/patients-and-families/meals-and-nutrition/bwh-nutrition-and-wellness-hub/special-topics/gas-beat-the-bloat

https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/ss/slideshow-drink-enough-water

https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/whats-water-weight

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/6-ways-to-reduce-water-retention

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/third-spacing#what-it-is

https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/whats-water-weight

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32246999/

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods-that-help-with-bloating#2.-Cucumber

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_activity

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322525#long-term-solutions

https://www.everydayhealth.com/fitness-pictures/yoga-poses-for-beginners.aspx

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320603


This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. The information contained herein is not a substitute for and should never be relied upon for professional medical advice. Always talk to your physician about the risks and benefits of any treatment. Nu Image Medical may not offer the medications or services mentioned in this article.