Our bodies contain up to 70% of water. You can find water in our cells, in our blood, muscles, organs….it is everywhere!

However, when you start retaining extra water your body does not need, you start feeling bloated and it can become very uncomfortable. This phenomenon is commonly called water retention.

First we need to address the elephant in the room.

In this humid and hot country, we are all keeping extra water. That’s why I feel lighter when I put on my jeans back on in France! Disclaimer: that feeling quickly fades away when I start eating croissants for breakfast – no one is perfect! 🙂

Ok so what is water retention?

In short, water retention is when excess water begins to build up in your body’s tissues. As I said earlier, we’re all keeping a bit of water without it affecting our daily life but, in some cases, it can be quite severe and painful.

How do I know if I have water retention?

There are a few symptoms to look for:

– Puffiness or swelling in the extremities: hands and feet, ankles and sometimes around your knees.
– Unexplained changes in weight in a short period of time (Fat doesn’t build up as fast as water retention– lucky us!)
– Aching or stiffness in the swollen area.

What causes water retention?

There can be multiple reasons why you experience water retention, you will find a few of them below, with a quick tip on how to overcome them. However if you are experiencing a really severe case of water retention, please consult a doctor immediately!

1. Your position (at work)


Remember our friend Newton’s big discovery? Gravity is that force that pulls our bodies towards the earth. When we’re standing or sitting for long periods of time during the day, gravity can cause water to build up in our legs and feet, which may lead to swelling.

What can I do about it?

– Walk around! Real big steps, not just short paces around. Go for a good walk every hour to stretch your legs and improve your circulation. Even better go up and down stairs so your glutes (bum) gets a workout too!

– Elevate your legs at the end of the day. Lay on your back with your feet elevated above your heart for at least 20min a day. You will feel so much better afterwards!

– Go for a good massage. I can already see you showing this blog post to your partner saying, “you see Alicia told me to get this massage package – it’s like a prescription!” When well done, massages stimulate blood flow, fluid movement and your lymphatic system function which will help to eliminate swelling

– Try Acupuncture: Traditional Chinese medicine can help too. Find a reputable clinic and make sure you are not afraid of needles!



You might have heard about this one but eating too much salt you lead to water retention, as it will automatically make your body retain more water. Salt is an amazing mineral but it should be consumed with moderation.

What can I do about it?

– Salt is like sugar, it is a taste exhauster, so slow down your consumption slowly but surely and soon you will be able to enjoy food with a real “pinch” of salt!

– You don’t usually add salt to your food? Try avoiding pre-packaged, processed foods, they are FULL of salt, even if the product is sweet! Make you own meals so you can control the amount of salt you eat. That should really help.



It may seem counter intuitive, but water retention can happen in the initial stages of dehydration because your body is really intelligent. As it realises that you are losing fluids (by sweating or vomiting in extreme examples) your body will try to retain as much water as possible to avoid getting to a stage of severe dehydration. Instead of processing liquid out of the body, the water will be reabsorbed into the tissue – hence the swelling.

What can I do about it?
– DRINK MORE WATER THROUGHOUT THE DAY! I like to keep a one litre bottle by me at all times and I ensure I drink at least 3 litres per day.


I know, these guys are responsible of SO MANY uncomfortable moments in our lives…. You might have experienced bloating just before and during “that time of the month” as your hormones balance is changing during that week. Same goes during pregnancy.

What can I do about it?

If you are subject to bloating during these periods (no pun intended) then:

– Join us for an Aquaspin™ class! I know this is an easy one, but working out and especially working out in the water boost your blood circulation and helps to drain the toxins out of your body, leaving you refreshed and lighter at the end of the class!

If you have more questions about water retention I would be happy to answer them just write to us at hello@therippleclub.fit!
Alicia xx