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Reducing Water Retention Naturally With Chinese Medicine 

Retaining water is not only uncomfortable, but it can also make it difficult to lose weight. While there are countless diets and fitness programs available claiming to hold the answers to successful weight loss, Traditional Chinese Medicine is all about getting to the bottom of what’s causing water retention and weight gain and helping you achieve balance.

Chinese medicine believes that when your overall body is in good health, the body is in balance and works in harmony and therefore weight problems should not exist.

Let’s take a closer look at the difference between the Western vs. Chinese Medicine approach to water retention and weight loss. We will also look at how you can go about achieving that overall balance where your body systems are all working in harmony with one another.

The Western vs. Chinese Medicine Approach For Water Retention

When it comes to reducing water retention and losing weight naturally, western medicine looks at things much differently than the approach of Chinese Medicine for water retention.

The western belief is that weight gain is caused due to overconsumption of food as well as living a sedentary lifestyle. The western medicine belief is also that the body’s capacity to hold carbohydrates is limited and that excess is converted into fat, which can lead to weight gain.

A traditional Chinese Medicine approach looks at things a little bit differently and looks at the underlying imbalances that exist within the body. The Chinese Medicine approach believes that when overall balance is achieved, the metabolism will work at its optimal levels and weight loss will follow.

The Chinese Medicine approach also looks at how weight gain can lead to other health issues such as anxiety, depression, metabolic issues, and diabetes. This is another reason why it is so important to take the necessary steps to establish balanced health.


water retention in Western VS TCM approach

The Different Internal Causes for Being Overweight

The Traditional Chinese Medicine approach looks at the root cause of weight gain, such as internal phlegm, dampness, as well as Wi deficiency.

According to TCM, healthy weight can be achieved by supporting a better functioning spleen, as well as supporting blood and Qi circulation in the body. By doing so, there will be an improvement in elimination of excess fluids and toxins from the body, which can result in weight loss. This can be done through a variety of different TCM modalities like acupuncture, but also through incorporating certain foods and moderate exercise into your lifestyle.


water retention and cause of weight gain


How to Get Rid of Water Retention Naturally

If you are retaining water, or are looking to support overall balance in order to help promote weight loss, there are various Traditional Chinese Medicine remedies that can help.


  • Chinese herbs for water retention:

Herbs take an holistic approach in helping you reduce water retention. Herb help to get rid of excess water or dampness in the body through the act as natural diuretics, inducing urination, strengtening your organs and improving their function: 

These herbs include:

  • Ren Shen (Ginseng) – Increases organ function
  • Luo Xuan Zao (Spirulina) – Reduces water retention  and detox kidney
  • Bai Zhu (White Atractylodes) – Inncreases metabolism and spleen function
  • Fu Ling (Poria Mushroom) – Inncreases metabolism and spleen function
  • Shan Yao (Chinese Yam) – Increases spleen function and reduce water retention
  • Chen Pi (Citrus Peels) – Deetoxes liver and unblocks energy channels for free movement of Qi
  • Mu Xiang (Costus Root) – Detoxes liver and unblocks energy channels for free movement of Qi
  • Sha Ren (Cardamon Seed) –  Detoxes liver and unblocks energy channels for free movement of Qi
  • Huang Qi (Astragalus Root) – Strengthens organs 
  • Dang Gui (Dong Quai) – Nourishes liver, kidney and spleen 
  • Suan Zao Ren (Sour Jujube Seeds) – Promotes better sleeping cycle so your organs can repair
  • Yuan Zhi (Polygala Root) – Relaxes mind

Not sure where to start with? Get personalised advice from our TCM specialists for free!

  • Exercise: Exercise is also going to play an important role in supporting the body’s ability to naturally lose weight. You can warm up the body through moderate exercise, which will help promote the flow of Qi and blood. By doing so, you can remove stagnation of dampness as well as any built-up phlegm in the body. You can help resolve water retention and promote natural weight loss.
  • Acupuncture for water retention: Acupuncture for fluid retention is another alternative medicine modality that can help reduce water retention by encouraging blood flow and the movement of fluid through the body. This further helps to reduce joint inflammation, welling of limbs, and promote weight loss. people use acupuncture as a way to help promote better circulation, achieve better overall balance in the body, and to support spleen function, a key part of successfully losing weight.

A skilled acupuncturist will be able to really narrow into areas that are imbalanced, and target specific acupuncture points to help balance different organs, help treat fluid retention, while also helping to support better hormone balance. We have 2 clinics in London which has been around for over 20 years, Find out more about our clinics here

To maximise the result of acupuncture for fluid retention, you can combine moxibustion to boost the Yang energy in your body, read more here.

  • Emotional Balance: TCM also looks at the role of emotional health when it comes to weight loss and overall physical wellbeing. Emotional and physical wellbeing are intertwined, so you need to take care of your mental health as well.

In TCM, digestion is viewed as not only letting go of food, but also what you hear, see, and everything else you take in. If you are constantly stressed out, these tense emotions may become “undigested,” which can then impact your Qi, and your Qi flow can become stagnant and cause fluid retention. (2) This is where daily stress reduction comes into play when it comes to losing weight and bringing more balance into your body. Things like acupuncture, meditation, and yoga can all be very beneficial and should be made a regular part of your lifestyle.

  • Nutrition: Foods can be natural remedies for water retention. The foods you eat will also play a role in how much water your body is retaining. There are many foods and herbs you can add to your diet that can help reduce water retention and help reduce dampness in the body. (3) Try adding some of the following foods to your diet.
    • Onions
    • Scallions
    • Basil
    • Rosemary
    • Oregano
    • Sage
    • Parsley
    • Fennel
    • Nutmeg
    • Clove
    • Celery
    • Turnips


If you have been trying to lose weight and feel like diet and exercise isn’t getting you to where you want to be, it’s time to address other aspects of your health and restore balance. A Traditional Chinese Medicine approach can be an incredibly helpful way to uncover the root cause, reduce dampness, address Qi imbalances, and promote optimal spleen function to help your body work at its best. The only successful way to let go of water retention is to get your body into a state of homeostasis as balance is the key to overall health.

Not sure where to start with? Get personalised advice from our TCM specialists for free!

Water Pills 

GinSen’s Water Retention Remedy is the ideal supplement to use when you are struggling to lose weight, and if you find that your body is retaining fluid. Our Water Retention Remedy is made from 100% natural ingredients and helps to remove excess fluid resulting from indigestion. It can also help with gas and bloating and can help boost the metabolism.

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 These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. We can’t guarantee the treatment result, as the symptoms of conditions are unpredictable and vary greatly from person to person. The treatment length and recovery time also varies for individual. Please visit our clinics website: GinSen where a specialists will discuss your care and provide a consultation, and the treatment will be designed to meet your individual needs.

water retention natural remedy

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