Ignoring the root cause of edema could lead to bigger health problems down the road. Find out more about the different causes of edema.
0:58 Potential causes of edema
2:11 Diabetes and edema
3:00 Don't ignore the root cause
When someone has edema, you can tell a lot about what's going on in their body based on where they're holding fluid.
If the right ankle and foot are more swollen, the problem could be with the liver. If the left ankle or foot is more swollen, the problem may be with the heart. If both ankles and feet are swollen, the problem may be more of a blood sugar situation, like diabetes.
But there are many other potential causes of edema, including:
• Chronic venous insufficiency
• Kidney problems
• Advanced lung problems
The most common causes of edema in the ankles is diabetes or prediabetes, or the person is low in potassium and has high sodium. In this situation, I don't think you should cut down on your salt. I do think you should increase your potassium by consuming more greens.
In many cases, when people go to the doctor with edema, they're given a diuretic. But, this is just treating the symptom and not the root cause. When you hide the symptom, you're lowering the awareness that the problem is still there.
It's crucial to investigate and figure out the root cause and correct it, so you don't end up with a bigger problem.