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Natural remedies for swollen feet and ankles
July 23, 2013, 12:00 pm

Swelling in your feet and ankles is called edema, and there are a lot of things that can cause the problems such as high blood pressure. What is happening is that your body is having trouble fighting gravity to move blood and fluids back up your legs, so your ankles, feet, and even your legs can begin to swell. That uncomfortable swelling is not actually a disorder, just a symptom, and the best way to treat it is to discover the root cause. Whatever the reason, these remedies can help give you some relief while you sort out the cause of your edema.

Do a little yoga:

Exercise helps to improve your circulation, and yoga is a great way to get moving and really focus on that circulatory system. If you are totally new to yoga, you will benefit from a class. A yoga instructor can make sure you are doing the poses properly and might even be able to suggest additional postures to help with your edema!  Once you have a swing of how the poses feel, you can practice at home.


Soak in tonic water:

Soaking in room temperature – or cold – tonic water can help with swelling. The quinine and the bubbles can help reduce inflammation, and frankly just soaking your poor, swollen feet feel great.


Grab some grapefruit essential oil:

A warm bath can also help with swelling, and you can give that water a boost with a few drops of grapefruit essential oil.  If baths aren't your thing, you can also mix a few drops of grapefruit oil with a carrier oil like olive or sweet almond oil and give yourself a little foot and leg massage. As you rub your feet, ankles, and calves, focus your pressure upward, rather than downward or in a circular motion.


Salt water soak:

Adding a healthy dose of Epsom salts to the tub is another way to enhance the properties of the bath. Use a bucket if the swelling is on your feet and ankles, or if your calves are swollen, too, a bath is probably your best bet.


Get some support hose:

Support hose or compression gear can prevent swelling, especially if is due to the constant activity on your feet.  You can find compression socks that come knee- or thigh-high or fullon compression stockings. These products are meant to be pretty tight on your legs, and can really make a difference.

Drink Up:

Excess salt is a big contributor to swelling, and upping your fluid intake can help dilute the salt in your system. Aim for 8-10 glasses of water per day to flush things out. Even better; try making cucumberlemon water. Just drop a couple of cucumber and lemon slices in your glass, and enjoy! Both of these fruits have anti-inflammatory properties, so if gives that water an extra swelling-fighting punch. 

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