Weight Gain Caused By Water Retention

Though the most common reasons that the majority of us will gain weight has to do with consuming too much food, eating the wrong types of foods, or living a lifestyle that is simply too sedentary, there is another significant contributor to weight gain that is often overlooked – water retention. Water retention occurs when water is held within the abdomen or circulatory system, or inside other body tissues and cavities. Though water retention is a normal process of the body – something that every person experiences – when it occurs to more extreme degrees, it can cause us to gain in size and weight.

It may seem backwards, but drinking 8 or more glasses of water a day helps to prevent water retention.

It may seem backwards, but drinking 8 or more glasses of water a day helps to prevent water retention.

A normal healthy body will always have some level of water retention. In fact, the body requires it for its organs and muscles in order to properly function. The muscles and organs of the body are, essentially, water-filled tissues. However, when certain changes occur in the hydration systems of the body, the result can be a much greater retention of fluids within the body’s tissues, causing swelling within them. When this happens to more extreme degrees, the body rounds out, looking heavier and weighing more.

There are many different causes of water retention that will all result in weight gain to some extent or another. Among the most common is a change within the body’s smallest blood vessels, called capillaries. Capillaries are responsible for ensuring that blood reaches into all of the different parts of the body, so that oxygen, nutrients, and fluids are effectively distributed. Should the capillary walls leak and/or if the blood pressure should change, excessive amounts of fluid can be delivered and stored within various parts of the body where they would not usually occur in such quantities.

As strange as it may sound, dehydration is also a significant contributor to water retention in the body. If you are not drinking enough water, the body detects that it is not receiving sufficient hydration. Therefore, it makes an effort to conserve as much water as it can in this time of “drought”, by storing any additional water within the body’s tissues.

Another culprit of weight gain caused by water retention is eating too much sodium (salt) in your diet. Have you ever gone out to a movie and enjoyed a bag of popcorn only to weight 5 pounds heavier the next day? Most of this weight gain is due to your body retaining water because of the salt you have consumed.

It is not entirely uncommon for a person retaining water to gain up to five pounds in water weight alone, either overnight or over a period of a couple days. This can make it not only challenging to fit into one’s clothes, but it can also make regular weight loss quite a struggle, since the tissues are holding onto so much extra fluid – not fat. The good news is that water weight gain is also one of the easiest to lose and you should notice a drop in body weight when you make some simple adjustments.

In order to help your body to combat water retention, make sure that you’re always drinking at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day. Urinate whenever you feel the urge – that is, don’t “hold it”. Try to keep your sodium levels down, as salt is a direct contributor to the retention of water.

Keep in mind that water retention can also be indicative of kidney problems. Therefore, if you are suddenly or abnormally retaining water, it is a good idea to speak with your doctor to ensure that it is not a sign of a more serious problem.

Other Related Posts and Articles you May Find Interesting: “Water and Weight Loss”, “Drinking Water is Important for Weight Loss and Health”, “Top Reasons Why You Cannot Lose Weight” and “How Dehydration Affects Metabolism”.


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