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Dear Hungry Girl,

I need to fit into a special dress this week, and I'm having trouble zipping it up.  Is there a healthy way to drop some water weight quickly?  Help!

--Bloated in Boise

Dear Bloated in Boise,

First off, congrats for not attempting to go on a crazy crash diet to try to lose 30 pounds in three days.  Your goal of dropping a few pounds of water weight is much more realistic.  A main cause of water retention is high sodium levels (too much salt), so the first thing you'll want to do is ditch the salt shaker and avoid salty foods like lunch meats and canned soups.  Next, though it goes against what logic would suggest, to get rid of retained water drink 8-10 glasses of water daily.  The H20 will help flush out the salt, and more water, from your body.  Finally, fill up on water-filled foods like oranges, cucumbers and apples.  They're natural diuretics.  Do all this, and you won't have to work so hard at squeezing into that dress.  And not only will this plan help you de-bloat yourself, it's also good for you! 

Dear Hungry Girl,

I'm confused.  Everyone always says it's good to drink lots of water, but I've heard rumors that drinking too much water can be dangerous.  Is this true?

--Water Wary

Dear Water Wary,

Strangely enough, there is such a thing as overdosing on water (the medical name for it is water intoxication).  The body requires a balance of something called electrolytes (made mostly of salts) in order to function properly.  If you consume too much water, these electrolytes can be flushed from your system, interfering with brain, heart and muscle function.  Don't bail on your bottles of water though.  This condition is normally only found in athletes and marathon runners who sweat out tons of salt while drinking massive amounts of water in a short period of time.   A daily total of 8-12 glasses is considered perfectly safe, and good for weight loss.  In conclusion, unless you're inhaling someone's entire swimming pool through a straw, you're probably fine!

Water contains no calories, fat, or cholesterol and it's low in sodium.  Water is also a natural appetite suppressant, and it helps the body metabolize fat!

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