17 Home Remedies For Edema In Hands, Legs, Ankles & Feet

updated: 06/23/2019

It is estimated that about 60% of the human body weight is water. Water flows within the body, presents inside and outside of your cells and keeps your tissues moist.

The spinal cord, joints, bones and brain require water to function its best [1].  However, too much water can build up, resulting in swelling in the arms and legs. It is called edema. This article will reveal to you home remedies for edema in hands, legs, ankles and feet. Read further to know more about basics of edema, including what it is, what causes it, what symptoms are, etc. Let’s check out!

What Is Edema?

Edema is a health condition in which the fluid is accumulated in the tissues, resulting in the swelling. This condition often occurs in specific body parts like hands, legs, ankles, or it could also affect the whole body.

In the body, there are two major compartments between which the fluid is exchanged: the extravascular and intravascular compartments. Fluid moves between them and this moving extent is determined by the balance between oncotic and hydrostatic pressures. However, if there is any change in these pressures, it will cause edema.

Edema usually impacts just certain body parts. Different types of edema are named based on the body part they impact. This condition can be divided into 4 types as below:

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  • Pulmonary edema: Pulmonary edema refers to the swelling occurring in the lungs. In this case, the fluids are retained in the lungs. If this case is not solved soon, the persons suffering from this edema type can have the risk of falling in heart failure [2].
  • Peripheral edema: If you suffer from peripheral edema, your hands or legs can be swollen. This is the most common type of edema.
  • Macular edema: This type of edema refers to the swelling at the eye macula [3].
  • Cerebral edema: This kind of edema means that the fluid in the brain is blocked [4].

What Are Common Causes Of Edema?

Generally speaking, edema is caused by additional fluid building up in the tissues of our bodies. However, there are many things that could cause the fluid to build up.

Here are common causes of edema [5]:

Firstly, edema is caused by some medicines, such as medications for diabetes, anti-inflammation medications, etc.

Secondly, it can be due to some serious health issues, including kidney problems, cancer, heart diseases, etc.

Thirdly, it can be the result of sitting in a place for a long time.

Other factors contribute to this medical condition are pregnancy, insect bites, over consumption of salt, etc.

You cannot get edema from other people, including your family members. It means that edema is not contagious and inherited.

What Are Symptoms Of Edema?

In general, if you have swelling in your hands, legs, feet and ankles which is not related to any injury, it can be edema. It causes the puffiness of your hands, face, feet or any other affected areas. More specifically, you will notice the following symptoms.

  • The affected parts are swollen and become shiny when they are pressed for a while.
  • The affected skin is puffed.
  • There is a pain in the affected parts.
  • The joints are stiff and you feel difficult to move.
  • The blood pressure
  • The abdomen is painful.
  • It is likely to suffer from nausea.
  • Vomiting
What Are Risk Factors?

Pregnant women’s body tends to retain more water and sodium than usual because of the increased fluid required by the placenta and fetus. It will increase your risk of getting edema [6].

On the other hand, you will be more likely to get this condition if you are taking some medications like:

  • Steroid drugs
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Medications for high blood pressure
  • Estrogens
  • Medications for diabetes like thiazolidinediones

Congestive heart failure, kidney or liver disease could also make you prone to edema. Sometimes, surgery could obstruct a lymph node, thereby resulting in swelling in your arms and legs, often on just one side.

When To See A Doctor?

You had better visit a doctor if you have stretched, swelling or shiny skin, or if your skin retains a dimple after you press it.

Make an appointment with your doctor if you have:

  • Chest pain
  • Trouble breathing
  • Shortness of breath
Complications Of Edema

In case left untreated, edema can result in:

  • Trouble walking
  • Painful swelling which increases daily
  • Stiffness
  • Stretched skin
  • Scarring between tissue layers
  • Infections in the swollen areas
  • Reduced elasticity of veins, arteries, muscles and joints
  • Reduced blood circulation
  • Higher risk of skin ulcers

If the symptoms above happen too much, it is time for you to call for a doctor immediately. However, if your edema is resulted from insect bite or bee sting, or your edema is minor, you can apply some home remedies completely.  You had better not worry so much because we are here to give you a helping hand. It is time for you to look through our article “20 Natural Home Remedies For Edema In Hands, Legs, Ankles And Feet”. Please read through our article below. Take a look at TrueRemedies.com. However, if you see no improvement, it is time for you to go to see your doctor.

Top 20 Effective Home Remedies For Edema In Hands, Legs, Ankles And Feet

1. Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is one of the top home remedies for edema. Apple cider vinegar is considered as the most common vinegar used around the world. It brings a number of benefits, such as weight loss, reduction of cholesterol level, treating diabetes, etc. The name of apple cider vinegar tells us the ingredients of which it is made of. Apple cider vinegar is made of crushed apples which are caused to be fermented. That is a reason why this kind of vinegar is rich in potassium, replenishing the level of potassium in your body as well as reversing retention of the fluid. Another benefit of apple cider vinegar in treating edema is that it alleviates the swollen and painful areas.

You can choose one of the instructions below:

Method 1:

  • Pour a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar which is unfiltered and raw in a glass of fresh water.
  • Consume the mixture 2 times every day.

Method 2:

  • Pour a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in a cup.
  • Add some water to it.
  • Stir them well.
  • Dip a clean towel in the mixture.
  • Cover the affected skin with the towel.
  • Keep it on for a few minutes.
  • Apply this remedy for several times every day.
2. Epsom Salt

epsom salt

Epsom salt is not a simple saline solution. Actually, it is the combination of sulfate and magnesium. Epsom salt is applied in treating a number of health issues, in beauty as well as house-hold uses. As we all know, magnesium and sulfate have great benefits to our health, such as inflammation reduction, muscle relaxation through encouraging more than 325 enzymes in our body to act. Therefore, having a bath with Epsom salt is a good solution to soothing the swollen, inflamed as well as painful areas caused by edema. It is because it can dry out the fluids as well as get rid of toxic things out of your body [7].

Here is the guide of using Epsom salt as one of home remedies for edema:

  • Add 2 cups of Epsom salt to a tub.
  • Fill the tub with warm water.
  • Mix them well.
  • Then, soak yourselves in the mixture.
  • Be in the water for 20 minutes.
  • Do the repetition thrice every week.
3. Tea Tree Oil

Originated from Australia, tea tree oil is made from tea tree. Its benefits in combating against bacteria, fungi as well as bacteria have been admitted for many decades. It is really good for curing inflammation and swelling, especially wounds. This oil is applied as natural remedies for a number of health problems, namely chickenpox, acnes, cold sores, etc. So, it is not surprising to know that it is one of the useful oils that you can use to combat against edema. The oil is effective in soothing the inflammation caused by edema or due to insect bites thanks to its powerful ability to fight inflammation as well as the natural ability for pain-killer. Furthermore, it is the special components which are called “terpinen-4-ol” and “alpha-terpineol”  contained in tea tree oil that work well to alleviate the swelling as well as the pain as a result of edema [8].

You can use it in several ways as below:

Method 1:

  • Take a clean cotton cloth.
  • Drop several drops of the oil in the cloth.
  • Then, put the cloth over your inflamed areas.
  • Let it sit on for several minutes.
  • Use warm water to wash it off.

Method 2:

  • Pour some drops of the oil in a cup.
  • Add the same amount of coconut oil for diluting tea tree oil.
  • Mix them well.
  • Apply it directly to the affected skin.
  • Gently massage the area.
  • Do this process twice every day.
4. Massage

When it comes to excellent home remedies for edema in hands, legs, ankles and feet, do not hesitate to give massage a try. This method is not only very simple to do but also brings a number of benefits in treating edema. In particularly, it can help to alleviate the swelling as well as painful areas which are common symptoms of edema. Massaging has an important role in activating your lymphatic system, creating favorable conditions for drawing out excess fluids gradually.

All you need to do is very simple:

  • Put the equivalent amount of mustard oil, olive oil and coconut oil in a cup.
  • Put the cup in an oven for making it warm.
  • Then, apply the warm oil to your affected skin.
  • Gently massage it for several minutes.
  • Do this process a few times every day.

Note: A pregnant woman can use this remedy upon the help of a therapist.

5. Parsley Leaves

Parsley is considered one of the best home remedies for edema symptoms in hands, legs, ankles and feet because of its great benefits in alleviating swelling by removing the fluids. This herb comes from some countries, such as Italy, Tunisia, etc. Its scientific name is “Petroselinum crispum”. People around the world consume it as a kind of spice or green leaf. Parsley leaves contain plenty of vitamin and essential minerals, such as vitamin A, E and C, folates, potassium, magnesium. Furthermore, it is a rich source of protein, carbohydrates, etc. It can limit re-absorbing the potassium and sodium, thereby preventing fluid accumulation [9].

Here is the simple guide for you on how to use parsley for treating edema:

Method 1:

  • Take a teaspoon of parsley which is dried.
  • Wash them thoroughly.
  • Put them in a pot.
  • Add 2 cups of clean water to the pot.
  • Turn on the heat.
  • Boil the mixture for 15 minutes.
  • Then, remove the heat.
  • Allow the mixture to steep for 15 more minutes.
  • Strain the liquid.
  • Consume the liquid once every day before your breakfast.

Method 2:

  • Take some fresh parsley leaves.
  • Wash them thoroughly.
  • Put them in a blender.
  • Turn on the blender to form a paste.
  • Then, apply the paste on your affected skin.
  • Allow it to stay on your skin for half an hour.
  • Use warm water to wash it off.
  • Do this process twice every day.

Method 3:

  • Include parsley in your daily diet.
6. Dandelion

Known as “Taraxacum officinale”, dandelion is originated from Eurasia. This plant has great amount of vitamins, such as vitamin A, C as well as minerals, including calcium, and iron. It can be used to treat some health diseases, such as diabetes, acnes, urinary disorder, etc. Acting as a natural diuretic, dandelion is a home-made ingredient that helps you to solve urinary problems quickly. In accordance with a study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, dandelion showed a promise in playing the role of a natural diuretic for human beings.

Dandelion can draw out the excessive fluid. Furthermore, containing potassium, it can also balance the sodium level in your body. As a result, the swelling as well as inflammation caused by edema can be reduced significantly [10]. You can make use of dandelion tea to get rid of edema symptoms naturally.

To take advantage of dandelion as one of home remedies for edema, follow these steps:

  •  Take a teaspoon of dandelion leaves which are dried.
  • Wash them carefully.
  • Put them in a bowl.
  • Add a cup of boiling water to it.
  • Cover the bowl.
  • Allow it to steep for 10 minutes.
  • Then, strain the tea.
  • Add some raw honey to the tea.
  • Consume several cups of tea daily.

Note: This remedy is not advisable for the persons suffering from gallbladder issues.

7. Coriander Seeds

Coriander is a famous herb in Asia. People around the world, especially in India use it as raw herb in their daily meal. It is also called Indian parsley. Its seeds are used in medicinal area, such as skin problems, diabetes, hair growth, etc. These seeds help you a lot in combating against edema. Owing to its powerful ability to fight inflammation, coriander seeds are useful in soothing the swollen and painful areas. It stimulates your blood circulation, accordingly [11].

You can apply the instructions below to use coriander to make home remedies for edema:

  • Take 3 tablespoons of coriander seeds.
  • Pour them in a pot.
  • Add a cup of water.
  • Turn on the heat.
  • Boil the mixture for 5 minutes.
  • Then, reduce the heat.
  • Let it simmer for several minutes.
  • Turn off the heat when the mixture is half left.
  • Strain the mixture.
  • Let it cool down naturally.
  • Consume the liquid twice every day.
8. Flaxseeds


Using flaxseeds is a well-known remedy for edema in Ayurveda medicine. Known as super food, flaxseeds are widely used around the world. The most noticeable benefit of flaxseeds is that the seeds own a huge amount of omega-3 fatty acid, numerous antioxidants, such as lignans. In addition, flaxseeds are loaded with essential minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, iron as well as protein, fiber, etc. Thanks to its anti-inflammatory ability, they are so effective in reducing swelling due to edema. Plus, flaxseeds can detoxify the toxins from your body. Besides their effectiveness to treating edema, you can use it to combat against plenty of health problems, namely improving your digestive system, decreasing the cholesterol level, fighting some certain cancers, etc [12].

You can use one of the two methods below:

Method 1:

  • Take ½ teaspoon of flaxseeds which are ground.
  • Put them in a bowl.
  • Add some warm water to the bowl.
  • Mix them well.
  • Consume the mixture twice every day.

Method 2:

  • Take some flaxseed oil.
  • Apply it to your affected skin.
  • Gently massage it for several minutes.
  • Do this process several times every day.
9. Pineapple Juice

Pineapples are favorite fruits in summer because of their cooling property. Called as “ananas”, pineapples have a number of great benefits to our health. We can make a list of some nutrients in each pineapple, such as bromelain, fiber, carbohydrates, vitamin C, beta-carotene, etc. This kind of fruit is a huge source of essential minerals, such as calcium, manganese, potassium and copper. That is the reason why pineapples are used to treat a variety of health problems, namely improving our immunity, supporting our digestive system, easing inflammation, and giving a helping hand in losing weight. The juice extracted from pineapples is also one of the best home remedies for edema that you can think about. Acting as natural diuretics as well as containing bromelain compound, this juice is an excellent in combating against inflammation due to edema.

Simply following the guide here, you can save yourselves from this problem soon:

  • Take an apple.
  • Use a knife to remove its peel.
  • Take ¼ of a pineapple.
  • Chop them into thin slices.
  • Then, put them in a blender.
  • Add some fresh water to it.
  • Turn on the blender.
  • Pour the juice in a glass.
  • Drink the juice.
  • Do this process twice every day.
10. Turmeric

Turmeric is a famous spice in curry in India. It comes from a plant called Cucuma longa in India. The plant contains curcuminoids called chemical compound which brings a number of health benefits. Many people love this natural spice because it can make the dishes tasty. Turmeric is the next home-made ingredient that helps you a lot in treating edema. As you know, turmeric contains a magic compound which is curcumin. The curcumin can fight inflammation as well as detoxify toxins out from your body. Therefore, you can use turmeric to alleviate your swollen and painful areas due to edema.

All you need to do is as below:

Method 1:

  • Prepare a teaspoon of turmeric powder.
  • Put it in a bowl.
  • Add a glass of hot milk.
  • Mix them well.
  • Drink the mixture twice every day.

Method 2:

  • Take a teaspoon of turmeric powder.
  • Put them in a cup.
  • Add some drops of clean water.
  • Mix them well to form a paste.
  • Then, directly apply the paste over your affected areas.
  • Do this remedy 2 times every day.
11. Ginger

Called Zingiber officinale, ginger has the same characteristics as turmeric. Its medicinal applications are shown for a long time. It is the summary of plenty of important vitamins, and essential minerals, including magnesium, iron, potassium, vitamin B6, etc. It is a good solution to many health issues, such as treating nausea, combating against fungal infection, easing menstrual pain, controlling blood sugar, etc. Ginger is the next kitchen ingredient that you can use to get rid of the symptoms of edema. Thanks to its gingerol which is a well-known for treating inflammation, ginger helps to reduce the swelling and pain associated with edema [13].

The steps you need to follow are very simple:

Method 1:

  • Take a small piece of ginger.
  • Crush it.
  • Put it in a pot.
  • Add some water to the pot.
  • Turn on the heat.
  • Boil the mixture for 5 minutes.
  • Then, remove the heat.
  • Strain the tea.
  • Let it cool down naturally.
  • Drink the tea twice every day.

Method 2:

  • Prepare a teaspoon of ginger powder.
  • Put it in a bowl.
  • Put a glass of milk in an oven to make it warm.
  • Pour the warm milk in the bowl.
  • Mix them well.
  • Consume the mixture twice every day.
12. Cabbage

Do you like eating cabbage? Cabbage is one of the good green vegetables that you can use to fight symptoms of edema. There are basically some common types of cabbages in the world. They are red cabbage, savoy cabbage, bok cabbage, green cabbage. However, they own the same characteristics and benefits. It is because the cabbage is full of water content, vitamin C, fiber, sulfur. Therefore, it is a power source for combating against inflammation thanks to its ability to removing excessive fluids out of your body. That is the reason why you can utilize the seeds for curing edema.

The things you need to follow is shown below:

  • Take some cabbage leaves.
  • Wash them thoroughly.
  • Put them in your inflamed areas.
  • Allow it to stay on for 10 minutes.
  • Do this process 2 times every day.
13. Nettle Tea

Nettle tea is among the most effective home remedies for edema in hands and feet that you should not neglect. The tea comes from stinging nettle plant. Stinging nettle is famous for its nutrition as well as great power to fight inflammation. Another benefit of the plant is that it helps to remove toxic things as well as excessive fluid in our body through facilitating the operation of the kidneys. All these characteristics bring it as a wonderful way for treating edema.

We will show you a simple way how to prepare this wonderful plant for combating against your edema:

  • Take a teaspoon of nettle leaves which are dried.
  • Wash them thoroughly.
  • Put them in a pot.
  • Add a cup of water to it.
  • Then, turn on the heat.
  • Boil the mixture for several minutes.
  • Let it steep for 10 minutes.
  • Strain the tea.
  • Let it become warmer.
  • Add a little raw honey to it for making it tasty.
  • Enjoy the tea 3 times every day.
14. Green Tea Extract

As we all know, green tea is so useful to solve inflammation. The extract from green tea leaves is also a good solution to edema that you are suffering from. Thanks to its property of stimulation and diuretic one, the extract is so effective in facilitating the metabolizing process of excessive fluids in our body [14].

There are some things that you need to apply this remedy:

  • Take a teaspoon of the extract.
  • Pour the extract in a pot.
  • Add a cup of water to the pot.
  • Turn on the heat.
  • Boil the mixture for a few minutes.
  • Turn off the heat.
  • Let the liquid cool down naturally.
  • Pour it in a glass.
  • Add some raw honey to it.
  • Enjoy the liquid 3 times every day.
15. Grape Seed Extract

grape seed extract

Some supplements of grape seed extract can help you a lot in this case. Grapes are considered as the healthiest fruits in the world. Grapes are the good source of vitamin C and vitamin K. They also contain a number of antioxidants. Therefore, its extract owns its antioxidant property which is good to reduce the swelling caused by edema. Grape seed extract is made from ground grape seeds. The extract contains some special compounds, such as tannins, catechins, oligomeric procyanidins, etc. In addition, it is a great source of linoleic acid as well as vitamin E. Thus, this extract is really one of excellent home remedies for edema [15].

Method 1:

  • Chew some fresh grape seeds every day.

Method 2:

  • Consume the extract in your daily meal.
16. Cold And Hot Compress

Applying something cold and turning to hot compress is one of the best home remedies for edema that you should notice. The heat is effective to encourage the blood flow. As a result, the inflamed and painful areas due to edema are soothed significantly. The cold has the same effectiveness to the inflammation and swelling caused by edema. That is the reason why you should not miss out this remedy if you want to eliminate this problem quickly [16].

Here is the guiding on how to apply this remedy for combating against edema:

  • Prepare a basin of warm water.
  • Soak a clean cloth in the water.
  • Then, remove it from the basin.
  • Tie it over your inflamed areas.
  • Allow it to remain on for 10 minutes.
  • Remove the cloth.
  • Next, also prepare a basin of cold water.
  • Dip the towel in the basin.
  • Tie it over the affected skin.
  • Allow it to keep on for another 10 minutes.
  • Do the repetition 2 times every day.
17. Juice Of Tart Cherry

It cannot be denying that tart cherries are full of antioxidants which are very effective in alleviating the painful and swollen due to edema. In addition, it can give a hand in fighting some certain cancers, treating insomnia, improving digestive system, etc [17].

Below is the instruction on how to prepare tart cherry juice in treating your edema:

  • Take about 15 tart cherries.
  • Wash them carefully by putting them in a large bowl with clean water.
  • Stir the water well to clean them.
  • Remove them out of the bowl.
  • Score them.
  • Next, use a knife to remove their pit.
  • Then, put them in a blender.
  • Turn on the blender.
  • Then pour the mixture on a strainer to strain the juice.
  • Pour the juice in a bowl.
  • Add more clean water if necessary.
  • Take a glass of tart cherry juice.
  • Do this process 2 times every day.
18. Reduce Sodium Intake

The human kidneys work to control the salt amount available in the body through excreting salt via urine. This process is regulated by some hormones along with physical factors. However, when the kidneys cannot work properly, which could be a result of reduced blood flow due to heart disease or kidney disease, our bodies will retain salt. This problem results in water retention plus with swelling [18].

Those people who are more likely to get edema ought to decrease their intake of foods high in sodium, such as soy sauce, ham, bacon, salami, salt, and olives. Packaged and processed foods are also high in sodium.
Instead, you had better opt for fresh produce, healthy fats and lean proteins.

Cooking and eating at home is also another way to take control of your sodium consumption.

19. Stay Active

One of the safest home remedies for edema is to stay active to keep your body fluids pumping back to the heart. Moving around throughout the day will keep your blood flowing constantly so that fluid will not pool and lead to swelling.

It is better to move around from 5 to 8 times a day with at least 10 minutes each times. This tip is particularly essential for those who work at their desk for hours or have a long flight.

Remember that a sedentary lifestyle could result in reduced blood circulation, causing swollen ankles, legs and feet, pain and blood clots.

20. Essential Oils

You can consider using fennel and grapefruit essential oils as home remedies for edema symptoms. They have the ability to alleviate water retention by working as natural diuretics. Furthermore, essential oils also reduce inflammation and relieve swelling accompanied by edema.

In details, grapefruit essential oil activates the lymphatic system and controls fluid retention. It can also promote the detoxification of waste and toxins which may result in bloating and inflammation.

Using essential oils gives a boost to blood flow, thereby decreasing fluid retention in legs and easing joint pain as well as aches developing when you are inactive for too long [19].

What you have to do is:

  • Mix 3-4 drops of grapefruit with 1 teaspoon of coconut oil
  • Massage this mixture onto your affected area twice per day

So, we believe that you have finished reading through our article about effective home remedies for edema. Hope that you have picked up the suitable solutions for your problem. Because they are easy-to-do methods, you can apply them at home by yourselves. However, if your edema is severe, or you see no improvement after applying some of these home remedies for edema, you should pay a visit to a specialized doctor. If there are any concerns about the remedies mentioned in our article of “20 Natural Home Remedies For Edema In Hands, Legs, Ankles And Feet” presented in Home Remedies Category. Your comments and ideas are always welcomed. We will try to give the feedback to you as soon as possible.

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