The Bloat Life
Water weight, is it real weight? As a bodybuilder I have tried to manipulate my bloating during peak week, who doesn't? We hydrate and dehydrate all the time, but what is really happening? Have you ever woke up to your pants being a litter tighter and your fingers feeling puffy? That's bloating!
Water makes up 50 to 60 percent of our adult body weight. When water builds in the body it causes bloating and puffiness, especially in the abdomen, legs, and arms. Your own body weight can fluctuate between 2 to 4 pounds in a single day due to water levels. So don't worry if your scale moves up and down between days, this is totally normal especially in women.
When I talk about bloat I'm not talking about chronic water retention. Chronic water retention is an indication that your kidneys or hormones are malfunctioning. periodic bloating is usually triggered by diet or lifestyle and can be taken care of without a trip to the doctor.
Extra water weight is stored all over your body in the tissues or between blood vessels. If you have a little too much salt the day before your kidneys will hold on to more water to dilute or correct the salt imbalance, then they flush it all out. Our kidneys are truly amazing aren't they!
If you aren't drinking enough water your body will store water when you are dehydrated. If you aren't drinking enough water your body's water ratio becomes off-balanced and your body will tend to hang on to any fluid it has or gets. When we think of water weight we automatically think we should drink less water right? WRONG! The is a HUGE misconception.
Water weight will just flush away as your kidneys restore your body's salt/water balance. Which might leave you feeling like you lost a lot of weight. It's natural for your body weight to fluctuate around a 5 lb range.
When you fast, do a cleanse, or hit up a ultra low-caloric diet for a week/or longer you use up the glycogen that your body has stored, and you lose the water weight with it. You are basically depleting your body. Or if you are starting say a whole 30 or vegetarian diet for a month consuming lots of veggies and whole natural foods your body's salt/water ratio might become more balanced and you have less bloating. The scale will drop in weight and you'll feel accomplished, but don't worry, if you lost weight from an extreme diet, you'll gain the water weight back when you return to your normal "salty" routine. This is why I highly discourage friends and family to do a crash diet or cleanse. They might seem like they are working but in actuality, you are missing out on vital nutrients like fat, fiber, and protein.
So the next time you start a new fad diet, you go on the next juice cleanse, or whatever it is to "reset" yourself, wait a week or two afterward and see if you have made any progress. Avoid jumping on that scale right away and if you do, don't be alarmed if you end up "gaining" some of that weight back in the coming weeks.
To reduce your bloat try these things
Drink more water:
Drinking water will actually reduce water weight, surprised? Dehydration can make the body hold on to all the extra water, like a camel. Water will also help promote healthy kidney function which helps excess water wash out sodium from the body. It's suggested adults should drink 2 liters of water a day (depending on your activity level).
Carbs will cause the body to store water. when we eat carbs, the energy we don't use right away is stored as glycogen molecules, each gram of glycogen comes with 3 grams of water attached to it. YIKES! Let's also note, carbs are not the enemy if consumed in moderation and appropriately timed.
Exercise-- surprise surprise-- allows our bodies to sweat out extra water. This will cause water weight to drop instantly. Not to mention that blood flow improves circulation, which also reduced fluid build-up.
Eat some high potassium and high fiber foods to help with the blood floor and create a healthy digestive system that balances out your entire body.
So don't trip potato chip, that scale isn't always the most accurate depending on the day. Just focus on a full nutritious meal plan, get moving, get your sleep, and drink your water!