From the Magazine

3 Natural Ways to Soothe Bloat Anywhere on Your Body

Feeling bloated from head to toe can weigh our bodies and our confidence down. To the rescue: pampering at-home remedies that nix false fat and reduce puffiness so you look and feel 10 pounds lighter in under 30 minutes!  

Swollen ankles? Opt for a lemon + salt soak

Prolonged periods of sitting or standing can cause fluids to pool around the feet and ankles. A foot soak infused with lemon and Epsom salts will reduce any swelling fast. The salts’ magnesium absorbs into skin, increasing circulation and drawing out stagnant toxins while diuretic lemon flushes out excess water from the body.

To do: Fill a large basin with cool water, add 1/2 cup of Epsom salts and the juice from half of a lemon. Soak feet for 15 minutes; rinse, then pat dry.

Puffy neck & face? Choose a cucumber “facial”

Expanding blood vessels in the face and neck push fluids out and into tissues, which leads to a swollen appearance. A cucumber ice massage can help! The combination of ice cubes (their chill constricts blood vessels), cucumber (it reduces swelling), and massage (it guides fluids out through lymph nodes) quickly alleviates neck and face bloat.

To do: Puree 1 cucumber and pour into an ice cube tray; freeze overnight. When needed, rub the cube on skin in circular motions, starting at the forehead and moving down to the neck.

Bloated belly? Try a castor oil tummy wrap

Those salty treats and bubbly drinks we like to reach for can lead to tummy-bloating water retention. The fix? Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, author of The New Fat Flush Plan ($17.07, Amazon), suggests a castor oil wrap. “When used topically, the oil’s ricinoleic acid penetrates skin, stimulating organs to release stagnant fluids so they can be eliminated from the body.” Plus, it’s been shown to improve digestion.

To do: Soak a washcloth in castor oil like Home Health Pure Castor Oil ($5.49, Vitamin Shoppe), wring out excess, and place over your stomach. Next, gently wrap plastic wrap (so oil better penetrates) around your waist and over the cloth; lie on your back on top of an old towel (the oil can stain). Place a heating pad or hot water bottle (heat triggers toxin-nixing sweat) on top, relax for 30 minutes; remove and rinse. The result: A belly that looks up to 2 inches slimmer for 24 hours!

This story originally appeared in our print magazine.

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