Bodywork & Body Care, Nurture Yourself

Is the SUN making you fat?


I have a story for you, and it might sound familiar.

Jane (no, not her real name), who is 5’6” and a comfortable 128 pound fit and successful 32 year old, was confused as to why her weight went up 7 pounds after a great weekend of eating well, hiking, beaching and amazing sleep while on vaca with her friends.

Her food journal was “clean” as could be with no excessive added salt or sodium. She drank a ton of water and consumed no alcohol. Jane was stress free and slept like a babe. It seemed like a conundrum until she told me that she fell asleep on the beach and got a sunburn on her back.

Aha! When questioned, she said she did feel a little puffy under her skin . . .not just on her back, but also in her wrists and ankles.

Our bodies handle sunburns just as they handle any type of burn! Sunburns cause an inflammatory response, due to basically cooking your skin!  Your bod holds on to fluid to help you heal. Yep, add sunburn to causes of water retention.

The prescription for all that water retention?

  • Drink a ton of water and decaffeinated herbal tea (at least enough so that your pee is clear and odorless)
  • Avoid salt, sodium and processed foods
  • Avoid sugar
  • Elevate your feet if your ankles are swollen
  • Exercise
  • Choose foods that are good sources of B6 (grass fed meat and brown rice)
  • Calcium and vitamin D are helpful too (found in dairy and dairy alternatives, collard greens and kale)
  • See a doc if you are not recovering in a couple of days, or if the burn blisters
  • Don’t stress and abandon your health goals – feel empowered knowing what is going on!

By the way, warm weather makes our bodies a little less efficient at getting rid of excess water, so even if you don’t get a burn, your weight loss may still be somewhat slower in the summer.

Follow the same prescription as above to literally flush the extra water out of you.

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