The most important thing in preventing fluid retention, according to the NIH, is to simply watch your fluid intake. How much you need to cut back depends on your specific situation, however, says Dr. Panjrath. “The amount may vary based on individual, location, and weather.”
For example, if your heart failure is not very severe, you might not have to limit fluids much at all. But if it gets worse, you may need to stick to 6 to 9 cups (1.5 to 2 liters) per day, according to the NIH. Your doctor can help you come up with guidelines that make sense for you. It can be helpful to keep a log of your fluid intake in a small notebook or the notes app on your smart phone.
When you’re at home, use the same size glass at all your meals. All you really need is 1 cup (8 oz. or 240 mL) of liquid, according to the NIH. At restaurants, keep rogue refills in check by placing an extra napkin on top of your glass in between sips, then turnover your empty glass when you’re done.