A practical guide for nutritional and traditional health care.
The accumulation of fluid in the tissue spaces can lead to a condition medically termed edema, this condition more commonly known as dropsy, leads to swelling in the spaces of the tissues fluid filters in and accumulates in the affected area. The muscles in the affected region of the body may start aching due to this accumulation of fluid, especially if the condition affects a particular area of the skin. Additionally the areas of the skin next to the swelling often becomes taut and shiny, this appearance of the skin is a very typical outward symptom of the condition. Because of the accumulation of fluid in the body during the condition, the patient often experiences an increase in weight by several pounds as the condition progresses. Bloating from the retention of fluid in the body can affect the entire body, even if the condition of edema in itself most common occurs in the areas around the feet and ankles of the person so affected.
Edema arises in a person because of a large variety of causes and factors, including genetic and biochemical predisposition to the condition. Normally any form of physical injury, inflammation in the body and many allergies affecting a person will lead to the appearance of edema. In addition, as far as women are concerned, hormonal imbalances during PMS leads to the typical symptoms of edema. These include symptoms such as the swelling of the ankles, the bloating of tissue and gain in weight, the same physical manifestations are brought about due to the utilization of birth control pills in some women, as such pills normally disturb the hormonal balance in the body. What happens at times in some women is that during the later stages of pregnancy, edema results with a lot of fluid retention in the body, accompanied by a high blood pressure, these are symptoms of a serious condition known as pre-eclampsia. If left untreated the condition can lead to the appearance of convulsions in the affected woman.
The condition of edema itself is caused and accompanies a wide range of metabolic and systemic diseases in the human body. Edema can be brought on by the utilization certain classes of high blood pressure medications, which are of the beta-adrenergic blocker type. The deficiency of protein in the diet can cause edema, as can blockage and varicose veins, other causes include obesity, many forms of liver disease can cause edema, certain types of thyroid disease can also cause edema. Many cardiac conditions and heart disease are accompanied by edema, as are kidney or pancreatitis disorders. Malfunctioning adrenal glands can also lead to the appearance of edema in an individual.
Maintaining a singular and motionless position of the body often overburdens the venous system and the weakened venous circulation can lead to swollen feet and ankles in the person. The chances of swelling in the tissues increases with the temperature and tissues are prone to swelling in excessive heat, bringing on the typical outward signs of edema.
An underlying heart disorder or disease often leads to water logging or edema in the legs and ankles that appears at the end of the day and fades away by morning. The retention of excess water due to some form of kidney disease leads to a permanent or persistent edema, typically developing and starting with a puffiness in the eyelids and the facial region of the affected individual. However puffy eyelids are quite normal in many people who are otherwise healthy and even if this symptom is often linked to kidney problems, it need not be always so, as a tendency towards puffed eyelids is normal in certain people, this is more so when waking in the morning. Abdominal edema can also come about due to the deficiency of protein in the diet, and or due to general malnutrition and in conditions such as liver cirrhosis. This is because besides many other functions in the body, the essential proteins are necessary for water retention in humans.
An underlying or delayed reaction from many forms of food allergies leads to the appearance of edema in a significant number of patients afflicted with the condition. To curb the tendency of the body to retain fluid, diuretics are sometimes prescribed to many women in treatments that can often last years on end. Hidden and unknown food allergies are often indicted by problems such as fluctuations in the body weight accompanied by fluid retention in the body. Chronic obesity and weight disorders in certain people might be alleviated thus by the simple expedient of alternating the dietary intake to reduce the level of the unknown allergic foods in the diet or to avoid them totally, this will lead to the elimination of the excess fluid excess and thus reduce weight. Though any and all kinds of food items can induce the retention of fluids in the bodies of susceptible persons, the most common culprits in this regard are dairy products, and products made from or containing wheat and other grains.
Supplements and herbs
It is advisable to carefully undergo medical examination for all forms of edema accompanying any form of heart or kidney disorders. The retention and accumulation of sodium, often compensated internally by increasing calcium and magnesium intake in the diet is the real culprit behind the retention of water. The excessive water in the tissues, especially caused during PMS, can be eliminated through the use of the vitamin B6 as a supplement. For ten days to two weeks before their menstrual periods, it is advisable for women to utilize a B6 supplement along with a vitamin B complex for ten days to two weeks as a way to prevent fluid retention in the body due to hormonal fluctuations.
Edema can also be caused by sluggish and impaired veins or lymphatic vessels, this can be alleviated through supplementation using the vitamin C along with plant based natural substances called bioflavonoids. These help stabilize and strengthen the cell walls and improve blood flow and lymph drainage in the afflicted person. Since the adrenal glands control levels of fluids and water in the body, supplements of vitamin C can be used as they assist the adrenals and boost its performance.
The herbal remedies given below can be used to increase the rate of urination and to boost circulation, helping to reduce the retained water, use them as instructed.
The lymphatic circulation in the body is stimulated and aided by the Common melilot. This herb can be used in the form of an herbal pillow on the affected and swollen areas or it can alternately be used as an external topical salve. Stimulating the renal activity can increase the levels of eliminated water; this is achieved through the use of the berries of the juniper plant. Dosage of these berries can be five dried juniper berries chewed carefully on the first day of treatment, followed by six on the second day and increasing this until the eleventh day, finally utilizing a total of fifteen berries. This increasing berry count must now be decreased steadily a berry less every day form the eleventh until the twenty-second day, again coming down to five berries as the treatment regimen ends. People with any sort of kidney inflammation must not use the juniper berries. To promote the rate of urination and to increase water removal, use can be made of diuretic herbs like the horsetail, the common parsley, the yarrow, the stinging nettle, and the watercress or even the leaves of the birch tree. These herbs can be made into a tea by the addition of a tsp. of herbs to a cup of boiling water, alternately if you prefer a single tbsp. of any of the juices of the herbs mentioned used on a daily basis can also suffice.
It is advisable to consult and visit a qualified physician where the edema is persistent or is severe, the following homeopathic remedies can be utilized to alleviate and reduce symptoms of edema which are minor in occurrence.
Additional things you may do
The elimination of toxins and the promotion of lymphatic flow is improved and aided through regular and daily exercises preferably out of doors, deep breathing techniques such as diaphragmatic breathing can help restore health and calm the nerves. Additionally stretching and walking out in the open exposed to fresh air has other benefits physically and mentally besides improving organic function. Other techniques that are recommended are daily and regular sessions of massages and lymph drainage conducted by a professional. The circulation in the body can be greatly improved through the utilization of hot and cold hydrotherapy techniques. Topical treatments and external application of salt packs, of the dry or moist variety has great benefits, and if it is applied to swollen ankles and other afflicted tissues, it will help in the elimination of excess fluids from those affected regions. Simply elevating the legs every hour or for half hour sessions two times a day can greatly help in the recovery and improvement of badly swollen ankles.
Other beneficial herbs
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