Upon finding out about my pregnancy, I have been worried about splurging on “eating for two” and gaining unnecessary weight. I’ve always envied those women who only grow on the bellies; who don’t even look pregnant from the back because they somehow manage to maintain slim arms and thin legs. I’ve been battling with keeping fit and monitoring my weight gain constantly, and one particular problem I have is water retention. Below are a dozen tips I abide by to make the days more bearable (and fat less visible). The goal is to maintain a “warm body”, not too hot, not too cold.
懷孕期間要注意的事情很多，不過最讓我困擾的其實是變胖的問題。我常看到許多懷孕的媽媽只胖 baby 沒胖到母體; 光看背影根本看不出來懷孕，因為手細腳細的，讓我超級羨慕。後來我發現許多時候並不是因為真的胖了，而是因為體質偏寒，容易水腫，所以看起來嘟嘟的，其實只是水分囤積在體內所造成的。為了打造溫暖又不上火、不偏寒的體質, 我整理出幾項頗有成果的好習慣:
1. Avoid leafy greens and fruits for dinner. Leafy greens and most fruits are generally cold in nature, therefore, they play an important role in relieving internal heat. However, consuming foods that are cold in nature at night when your body is preparing to go into resting mode may contribute to bad circulation, causing excessive water to retain in your body. For dinner, go for vegetables that are more neutral in nature such as rooted vegetables (carrots, yam, potato), broccoli, bell pepper, cabbage, etc., and consume your fruits during the day.
2. Avoid drinking iced/frozen drinks and ice cream.
3. Drink red bean water. On days when the swelling is more visible, I make red bean water and just sip on it throughout the day. Red bean water works wonders as a natural diuretic and helps reducing swelling significantly. Easy recipe:
Red beans —— 1 cup
Water ————- 4 cups
Rinse the red beans thoroughly to clean. Bring water to boil. Turn off the heat and place red beans in the boiled water. Let it sit for 20 to 30 minutes, then voila it’s ready to drink!
紅豆 ——– 1 杯
水 ———– 4 杯
Keep in mind to not simmer for too long; you don’t want the red beans to break and let out all the starch inside, or else you would be consuming a lot of carbs!
4. Have a cup of warm ginger water every morning. Ginger has diuretic properties that help eliminate fluid retention in a natural way. Ginger is also thermogenic in nature and helps warming up your body temperature to stimulate circulation.
5. Avoid processed and excessively salty foods. The problem with water retention may also be derived from the body’s excess sodium content. Once the sodium content is high, the water will be “trapped” in the body, resulting in swelling. Many processed foods contain much added sodium, especially if you have a habit of eating salty or heavy tasting foods.
6. Lift your legs after a long day to help promote circulation.
What are some tips you follow to reduce water retention? Share with us in the comment section below!