Guest Post By Saguren: Dealing With Water Retention

Dealing with water retention 

Firstly, I’d like to thank Mliae from Lifexperiment Blog for giving me the opportunity to submit a guest post to this wonderful site. You can read more of my content here. Today I’d like to discuss what water retention is and some practical ways to reduce it. 

What is water retention? 

As the name suggests, water retention happens when your body holds onto more water than it needs. This leads to unnecessary water weight that is often carried in various parts of the body, such as the circulatory system, cavities and tissues. This is often the cause of swollen extremities like hands, feet and ankles. It is also common in legs and arms. 

What causes water retention? And what can I do about it? 

Since water retention refers to too much water being held by the body, there are a variety of causes.  

Hormones 

In woman, hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy and monthly cycles are common causes. In these cases; adequate sleep, exercise, reduced unhealthy fat intake (plant oils and fried foods) and Omega 3 supplementation (or fish consumption) can help to reduce hormonal fluctuations and therefore reduce the effects that lead to water retention. 

Kidneys 

Another common cause is reduced kidney function. This makes a lot of sense, since the kidneys are responsible for maintaining water levels within the body. If they are put under too much pressure, their ability to maintain balance within the body is hampered. Ironically, increasing water intake gives the kidneys the ability to release toxins that might be keeping them hard at work. Antioxidants that are found in fruit and vegetables also improve kidney function. Since the kidneys are dependent on circulation, increasing physical activity will also help them out. 

Heart Health and Circulation 

Since circulation governs how well our bodies can regulate themselves (and the water levels within them), our hearts play a large role in preventing water retention. Water retention is a common symptom of heart failure. For this reason, if you experience a sudden, significant increase in water retention, you should always seek medical advice. Poor circulation leads to inadequate removal of excess liquids within the body. For this reason, exercise is recommended, along with a healthy diet. 

Sodium and Blood Pressure 

Sodium has many very important roles in the body. One of them is making sure that our bodies can hold onto and use the water that we drink. Without it, water would flow through our systems without being absorbed. On the other hand, too much salt causes us to hold onto to too much water. This is why increased salt intake leads to increase blood pressure: Our bodies end up holding onto more water than they can handle. Reducing salt intake is a great way to lower sodium levels. Another great way is to sweat more, since this is one of the ways that our bodies release excess sodium. Another great way is to increase water intake. This will increase urination, which allows the kidneys to flush out the surplus sodium. There is often more sodium hidden in processed food and fast foods than we realise. Cutting out these foods will massively reduce sodium intake automatically. 

By simply increasing water intake, being more physically active and paying attention to the food you eat, you can help your body to help itself become more beautiful and look better and better every day.  

Thank you for taking the time to read my post and have a great day, Saguren. 


Horrifying Statistics

STD’s, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, those moments when you are glad to be in a monogamous relationship…. this is the not so delicate topic I would like to talk about today. Allow me to rephrase that: This is the not so delicate topic no-one wants to speak about, but I now feel as though there is no option but to discuss this…today.

I’ll begin by saying that I am a numbers person. I’m a nerd, this I do not deny. I enjoy looking at annual statistics and thinking about them in relation to the times that we live in. So, I was doing some stat surfing since we’re in the new year and I happened across something quite terrifying. That something was the Center for Disease Control statics on STD’s. How I found myself here, I have no idea, as I was actually looking at economic data. But then, the rise in healthcare costs per household and I found myself here.

This is the following data for the USA via the CDC and world Gov websites:

  • ‘1,7 million cases of Chlamydia – a 22% increase since 2013’
  • ‘555,608 cases of Gonorrhea – a 67% increase since 2013’
  • ‘30,644 cases of Syphilis – a 76% increase since 2013’
  • ‘918 cases of Congenital Syphilis – a 154% increase since 2013’
  • According to HIV gov, there were 36,9 million people globally living with AIDS in 2017.

Doesn’t this scare you? It should. It scares me.

I will spare you my puzzlement on the matter, as I am sure you are asking yourself the same questions I am.

Now look, I get it. It’s baffling. It’s frustrating. And with all of the information available around the world about how to prevent STD’s, it is mind boggling that there is a constant increase in the number of cases in this day of instant global access to information. It’s also tricky. Given that the ‘S’ in STD is the abbreviation for Sexual, we tend to automatically make the assumption that these diseases are spread by sheer carelessness in that moment of passion. Not necessarily so. There are actually STD’s than can be contracted without unprotected sexual contact. For instance: Hepatitis, Mulloscum contagiosum, Trichonomas v, trichomoniasis, mono, scabies and those ever-feared creepy crawlies can all be contracted without direct skin on skin or bodily fluid contact. (oh yea….can you feel the anxiety level changing? Amazing how that happens…)

I remember, many years ago, when I helped at a charitable donations center. I would spend my Saturdays sorting donated clothing for people in need. All good. However, the problem arose when every once in awhile a hastily packed bag would find itself in front of you. You would find serviettes in the pockets, needles, medications and all sorts of interesting items crammed in along side business suits and dresses. Now that was a panic mode for me. We kept a bottle of vodka on hand for those types of ’emergencies’. (No, not for drinking, but for disinfecting.) And it was at this time that I realized that I should test regularly, just to make sure that nothing unexpected came my way. And I did. Many of us did; 1-2 times annually.

Although the statistics are horrifying in their intensity, it is possible to help keep those numbers from climbing further by being proactive and aware.

Please, I cannot stress this enough…. Even if you are in a monogamous relationship, please remember to get an STD screening at least once annually – just to make sure all is well!

Thank you for reading!

-Mliae


*These Statistics are based on 2017 information. 2018 stats have not yet been released.

*Photo sourced via Pixabay

Guest Post by Alicia Sanchez: Managing Stress at Bedtime

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Nearly everyone struggles with stress. As humans, we tend to put that stress off until we’re so embroiled in it that we can’t function. Most often, our stress tends to manifest in sleeplessness, Which makes that stress harder to deal with during the day.

You might find yourself thinking about your stressful day instead of counting sheep when you are struggling to get to sleep at night

Build A Routine

Whenever possible, create a routine for yourself that involves relaxing activities. This can mean anything from reading a book to relaxing in the bathtub –  it’s going to be personal for you. What works for you might not work for me.

Make sure that it includes brushing your teeth and hair as well, to make sure that you wake up as clean as you can be.

Routines are helpful because it helps to train our brain to focus on that routine instead of our stress and help us to sleep at night.

Keep Stressors Out of The Bedroom

One of the best things you can do for yourself if you are having trouble sleeping is to keep your work and cell phone out of your bedroom, Especially if you work from home. The human body Is Keen on distractions, so the fewer distractions that you give your body, the better off you will be when it comes to your bedtime.

By taking your work and phone out of the bedroom, you will be less tempted to get up and start working when you can’t sleep. Instead, try putting an old-fashioned alarm clock on your bedside table to wake you up in the morning. That way, you won’t be able to work from bed in the middle of the night on your cell phone. This could help limit the stress that you feel while you are trying to sleep.

If you must keep your work in the room, put it somewhere out of sight so that you won’t is staring at them from bed.

Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol

If you find yourself struggling to sleep  on a regular basis, try cutting out your use of caffeine and alcohol during the day. Caffeine is a stimulant that stays in your system for 6 to 8 hours after ingestion and can exacerbate anxiety and stress.

Alcohol is a depressant, which means that it causes you to be slightly more depressed. It can make you feel sleepy, but you’re more likely to wake up in the middle of the night if you drink before bed. Since sleeping poorly means that you will react worse to stressors during the day, this is not ideal,

If you want something to drink to help you fall asleep, try chamomile tea or other teas that are brewed specifically for making you sleepy.

If you find that you are  constantly stressed out at bedtime, talk to your doctor or therapist.  there might be something that is causing the sudden onset of stressed feelings at that particular time that you need to work through or get treated.

Sleep well,

Alicia

Alicia Sanchez is a researcher for the sleep science hub Tuck.com with a specialty in health and wellness. A Nashville native, Alicia finds the sound of summer storms so soothing that she still sleeps with recorded rain on her white noise machine.

*Photo Source: CC

Yay! A reason to celebrate on Fri-yay!

Just a little health check in to let you know that I am doing so much better! I went in for one of my follow-up blood checks and I was told that I’m now running on levels twice as high as I had when I went into the hospital. I am so happy! 🙂

It seems like the transfusions and treatments have started to work and I am out of the woods. It’s only a matter of time before I’m at 100% normal levels again. WOOHOO!! And OK, I’ll admit it…maybe the resting helped some too 😉

So this chic is very happy on this Friday. I’m really hoping this means I can re-introduce onions, garlic and the occasional glass of wine into my diet again too. Oh garlic, how I’ve missed you.

Thank you everyone for your kind words, encouragement and demands that I take care of myself. It worked!

Have a great Fri-yay!

-Mliae