Monday, January 21, 2013

Too much of a good thing?

I have been battling some swelling in my hands and feet for quite some time.  Months actually.  I notice it most right before bed, then when I get up in the morning.  I can hardly close my hands to make a fist some mornings (not that I need to punch anyone...well not usually).  I will notice the swelling around 7-8pm, but it's not ever too bad.  In the mornings though, I really have the issue, it usually only lasts until I get moving around, then it goes away.

I went to the doctor for some other issues last month, and I mentioned to the doctor about the swelling.  She ordered an echocardiogram to make sure it wasn't my heart.  My ticker is very healthy, actually she said, "you have the heart of an athlete" and that made my day!!!  Oh and the echo was by far the COOLEST test I've ever had done.  The tech that did it was so awesome, she was pointing out all of the chambers, valves, my aorta, seriously cool!!!!  Nurses are weird.

On Thursday night, I had an epiphany.  I thought, what if I'm drinking too much water during the day.  Sounds crazy right?  Well I made a note of all the fluids I drank for that day (the ones I could think of anyway) and it totaled around 140oz for the day.  That's a lot of fluid!  I drink all day long, I drink when I'm bored (thank goodness I'm not a hungry bored person!), I drink when I study, when I get in the car, when I'm at school, when I'm at work, I drink all damn day!!  That's a lot of fluid!  I don't like salt at all, I actually don't eat many things that contain salt, because I just can't stand the taste.  Salt and water go together, and they kinda counter balance themselves.  I know enough about physiology to know it wasn't salt that was making me swell up, it HAD to be water!  (I also know that having low blood pressure can make the body conserve water and sodium so the kidneys will work properly, but I'll spare you those details)

Since I cannot control my low blood pressure, I had test my water theory.

So the next day (Friday) I tried to only drink around 60oz (everything I read said 64oz was what you need) of water total for the day.  I had a hard workout in the morning, but I typically don't drink much, I always put a Nuun tablet in my 16oz water bottle, and usually only drink 80-90% of the bottle.  I paid more attention to my pee on Friday.  If my pee was light yellow and clear, then I knew I was hydrated, if it was completely clear, like water, I'd had too much.

Saturday morning I weighed myself, and I was down 2 pounds from the day before.  Now I wasn't completely not swollen, but I was way better than the previous morning.  And it could've been due to the hard workout the previous day.  So my thinking is I will try to limit myself on the drinking for several days.

I'm not sure how everyone feels about drinking less water, I always thought more was better.  I drink constantly, and it's super hard NOT to drink all day.  I walk by the fridge, and think I needed a drink, but when I asked myself if I was really thirsty, most of the time I'm not.

So far it's been 3 days, and I'm down 3.5 pounds.  It has to be water weight.  I've been more in tune with my body and thirst, and each day it gets a little easier.  I'm still drinking, but I'm trying to keep it around 70oz a day.  (I read several places that you should drink half your body weight in ounces per day).  I'm going to keep this up and see if this is my issue.  Each morning my swelling is a little better, so hopefully I'll be all better and not wake up like a swollen cow each morning!

How do you feel about lowering your water intake?  Have you ever monitored your water intake?  I was surprised by mine, you also might be surprised if you've never done it.


  1. Oh wow! How odd that it is the amount of water! But that does make sense! I drink a TON too and feel odd when I don't, but love that I do not have to get up in the middle of the night to pee. LOL!

  2. I know I need to increase mine! I'm going to work on that over the next few weeks!