Potassium helps maintain fluid balance in the body, and a deficiency in it may exacerbate swollen legs during pregnancy.
Swelling of the lower extremities during pregnancy is a common health problem for women, which can be relieved with some simple steps and a healthy diet.
In a report published by “Iris Mama” magazine (you are momSpanish writer Maria Hernandez says that one of the main causes of edema of the legs and feet during pregnancy is the expansion of the uterus due to the increase in the size of the child, and this puts pressure on the pelvic veins and the inferior vena cava, and slows the flow of blood from the lower extremities to the heart and the accumulation of fluid in the subcutaneous tissues .
Factors that cause edema of the lower extremities
There are other factors that cause edema of the lower extremities, including:
- Not drinking enough fluids.
- Standing for long periods of time.
- Excessive caffeine intake.
- nutritional disorders.
Tips and home remedies
Swollen legs in pregnant women cause pain, stiffness in the ankles, and difficulties in walking. To reduce these problems, here are the tips and home remedies.
1. Reducing sodium intake
To reduce leg swelling during pregnancy, it is very important to reduce the amount of salt in food, because sodium causes fluid retention. The American Pregnancy Association recommends avoiding processed and canned foods, not adding salt when eating, and replacing it with some herbs such as thyme or rosemary.
2. Limit your caffeine intake
Caffeine in itself is not harmful to a pregnant woman, but its excessive consumption has health consequences, including swelling of the legs, as it stimulates diuresis and creates the need to retain fluids.
3. Eat foods rich in potassium
Potassium helps maintain fluid balance in the body, and a deficiency may worsen swollen legs during pregnancy. These are the most prominent potassium-rich foods that are recommended to be included in the diet:
- the banana.
- Sweet potatoes with peel.
- Regular potatoes with peel.
4. Drink enough fluids
When the body does not get the fluid it needs, it tends to retain some of it to compensate. Therefore, drinking enough water helps relieve swelling in the legs, and it is recommended to take 1.5 liters of fluid per day to enhance the work of the kidneys and eliminate toxins through urine.
5. Wear comfortable clothes
Wearing clothes that are tight at the waist, wrists and ankles may worsen swelling, because these clothes restrict blood flow through the large veins. For this reason, it is recommended during pregnancy to wear comfortable and loose-fitting clothes.
6. Lift the feet up
Standing or sitting for long periods of time impedes optimal blood flow, and elevating the feet for some time – especially at the end of the day – helps to get rid of fluids retained in the body.
7. Wear compression stockings
Compression stockings are a helpful remedy for swollen legs during pregnancy. These socks gently apply pressure to the lower extremities, from the feet upward, which helps improve blood circulation.
Some studies have concluded that treatment with compression stockings helps prevent leg edema.
8. Walking regularly
Walking for a few minutes a day can help reduce swelling in the legs during pregnancy. Walking is one of the best exercises recommended during pregnancy, and it is recommended to choose comfortable and appropriate shoes to avoid back problems and reduce swelling.
9. Adjust sleep position
It is recommended to raise the bottom of the bed – at the level of the feet – a little higher, and pillows can also be placed under the feet.
10. Take a cold shower
Bathing and placing the feet in cold water helps stimulate blood circulation. It is also recommended to apply cold creams and massage the ankles and thighs in a circular motion.
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