It’s Water Retention!

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Are you feeling fluffy? It’s water retention and not fat, so relax.  

Water retention is very common when you restrict your calorie intake just like on the HCG diet. Usually, the impact is mild. Sometimes it can be big enough to mask your weight loss and gives you the impression that nothing happens for several days. Water retention can take many forms from the accumulation of water in the stomach to swollen aqueous tissue giving you the feeling of being fluffy. Other symptoms of water retention include: 

  • Bloating particularly in the abdominal area 
  • Puffiness of the face, abdomen, and hips 
  • Stiff joints 
  • Indentions in the skin 
  • Weight loss stall 

How water retention can stall your weight loss? 

Water retention is the most common cause of weight loss stall. It can happen to both men and women but its more common among women. Water retention during the HCG diet often occurs during the weight loss phase. When you reduce your calorie intake to only 500 calories per day, the pumping mechanism of your body cells also reduces. So, your body tries to hold onto the fluid there is left which then causes you to keep more water. The water retained causes a sudden curious jump in your weight the next day.  

Sometimes, water retention can happen when you don’t drink enough water. When your body is dehydrated, it holds on to the water to make up for the lack of incoming water. This makes you look bloated and fat the next day. If you want to see a drop on the scale the next day, make sure that you drink the desired amount of water to prevent water retention.  

Importance of water on the HCG Diet 

Water is an absolute necessity whether you’re on or off the diet. It’s one of the key elements in achieving a successful weight loss. Your body needs water to function properly. Whether you want to lose or maintain your weight, you need water. We should, in fact, all follow the “8×8 rules” which is drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water each day. When on the HCG Diet, water keeps your body hydrated. Your body cells can move toxins out a lot easier than when you are dehydrated. Water assists in the excretion of waste from the kidney and bowel. It assists in the digestion and absorption of nutrients in foods so your body can have the proper nutrition it needs while on the weight loss phase of the HCG Diet. 

Water retention and excess sodium intake 

Water retention due to excess salt intake can stall your weight loss. Too much salt can cause immediate water retention. Sodium, the main component of salt dilutes with water if too much of it is present in your body. Sodium makes you thirsty and it makes your body hold onto water. Approximately 1.5 liters of water is retained in the body when you eat too much salt. This continues as long as you consume higher salt intake. Reducing the amount of salt in your diet can help release a little water retained.  

Other causes of water retention 

Aside from dehydration and restricted calorie intake, other factors that prevent you from seeing a drop on the scale are: 

  • Menstrual cycle and fluctuating hormones 

Hormonal changes and premenstrual cycle causes water to retain. Hormonal changes before your cycle trigger different reactions that signal your body to store water. You may feel chunky and bloated during the first few days before and after your period.  

  • Medications 

Medications NSAID, blood pressure medications, hormones like estrogen and testosterone causes water and sodium retention.  

  • Standing or sitting for too long 

Water retention can happen when you are on a long journey, particularly when you have been sitting for too long. Fluid can build up in the legs and ankles.  

  • Heart and kidney diseases 

People with these types of conditions are more likely to suffer from water retention.  

  • Artificial sweeteners 

Your body has a hard time digesting artificial sweeteners. During the long process of digestion, gases are released which causes bloating. Ditch the artificial sweeteners during the HCG Diet and stick with the only sweeteners allowed on the HCG diet, Stevia.  

How to get rid of water retention during the HCG diet 

Here’s the good news, your body can self-regulate fluid levels to avoid excessive water retention. You just have to wait for a few days for your body to correct itself. You can also do the following to prevent water retention: 

  • Drink a lot of water 

 Drinking more water can actually reduce water retention. It improves kidney function by allowing excess sodium and water to be flushed out of your body. 

  • Lower your salt intake 

One easy step in beating water retention is to reduce your salt intake. The recommended amount of sodium each day should not exceed 2,300 mg.  

  • Take supplements 

Supplements like magnesium and vitamin B6 is an effective natural remedy for water retention. They work with the kidney to help your body flush out sodium and water. Aside from getting rid of excess sodium and water, these supplements can help relieve the symptoms of premenstrual syndromes like water retention.  

  • Exercise 

 Exercise lets your body sweat out more water. Stick with light exercises if you are still on the 500 calorie phase. Gradually increase the intensity of your exercise once you reach the maintenance phase.  

  • Drink water throughout the day 

Don’t chug a whole gallon of water all at once because your kidney can only process about a quarter gallon of water per hour.  

  • Get enough sleep 

Sleep can help your body manage its sodium and water balance.  

  • Be stress-free 

Long-term stress can increase the cortisol hormone which directly influences how your body retains water. Cortisol hormone increases the antidiuretic hormone or ADH which controls water balance in your body.  

  • Drink tea or coffee 

The caffeine in teas and coffee have diuretic properties that may help prevent your body from storing water.