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What Are Diuretics?

Some substances are very efficient at hastening diuresis, or the process by which the body expels waste fluids through urine. These substances are called diuretics, and can come in the form of medicines (or “water pills”) or homeopathic foods or remedies.

Diuretics are very useful for people who have excess fluid, as in the case of edema (when the tissues in the body collect a lot of water). These can also help people who suffer from heart disease, since the urine can carry away salt in the body. There are also those who try to use diuretics to help control their weight, though any pounds lost will be from water retention and will readily return.

However, people should not use diuretics without consulting a doctor. Too much diuretics can cause dehydration, and if not properly managed, can lead to an imbalance that may worsen some medical conditions. It is also not wise to combine diuretics with other medications without medical advice.

Those who have no serious health conditions and just want to lose a little water (such as the bloatedness one may feel right before getting a menstrual period) can opt for natural diuretics. For example, coffee or any drink with caffeine in it can increase urination. So does cranberries and apple cider vinegar. Cucumber, watermelon and other water-rich fruits and vegetables may also hasten urination. While these foods can be found in most people’s diet anyway, and a few have a good number of health benefits too ( for example cranberries are rich in anti oxidants) it is important that any conscious effort to tap their diuretic effects must be used in moderation.

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