Heart failure is when a heart is too weak to pump blood as it should. One symptom that can confirm this possible problem is swelling or edema involving the feet, ankles, and sometimes the hands. This is called chronic venous insufficiency.
Other causes of heart failure can come from high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, or even sleep apnea.
Your heart helps transport fluids, nutrients, and waste around your body, but when your circulation slows down, then fluid slows down. The slow fluid that does not get eliminated remains settled in places like your lower extremities. This causes puffiness, shiny or dimple-retaining skin.
Your kidneys are also affected because they cannot clear out the excess sodium which builds up with edema in both feet and abdomen. Here are six ways to prevent swollen feet.
6. Monitor Fluid Intake
Help yourself by keeping track of how much fluid of any liquid you drink. If you are already swelling then you need to decrease your intake. This could be from poor lymphatic drainage
5. Lower Salt Intake
Eat fresh foods instead of processed, canned, or prepared foods, which usually have excess salt. Salt is the biggest culprit of fluid retention, so decrease your own intake and read ingredients even on drinks, sauces, or condiments which have added salt. Too much sodium causes swelling; you should consume less than 2000 mg per day.
Kimberly Gomer, Director of Nutrition at the Pritikin Center notes: “Typically, reducing salt intake and eating healthier foods can reduce fluid retention not only in feet and ankles but also in the lungs”. In fact, Gomer says, many people with heart failure who begin living the Pritikin style no longer need their diuretic pills.