How do you keep a Kidney Healthy?
How do you keep a Kidney Healthy? – A blog article by Joseph Rosado MD. The kidneys are a vital organ for our bodies, yet many people take them for granted. Our kidneys help keep the body balanced and eliminate toxins, waste, and water. This article provides tips on how to keep your kidneys healthy and what resources are available to you.
How to Keep a Healthy Kidney – Tips, Habits, and Resources
What are some habits to promote good kidney health?
Most people are aware that good kidney health is essential to a person’s overall well-being. The kidneys are responsible for removing toxins and other waste products from the body, so it is important to care for them appropriately.
Remember that “Water” is the holy grail to having a healthy kidney. Water is the best thing to drink for kidney health because it gives your kidneys the fluids they need to function well. Keep in mind that water with sugar, caffeine, or other additives that do not benefit your kidneys. Drink four to six glasses of water every day for optimal kidney health.
So with that being said, the quantity of blood that filters through your kidneys on an hourly basis is surprising. The extra cups of water at night are insignificant to your kidneys functioning better. So the best time to drink water is not at night but during the course of the entire day.
Here are some good ideas to promote good kidney health.
1. Drink lots of water
2. Keep your blood pressure low
3. Stop smoking
5. Eat a healthy diet
6. Limit alcohol consumption
What are some resources for more information on kidney health?
Kidney diseases are one of the most common and costly health conditions in the United States. The National Kidney Foundation offers a wealth of information on kidney health including what to do if you suspect you have a problem. The study authors estimate that the average annual medical cost for kidney disease exceeds $28 billion, while indirect costs from lost productivity and premature death are more than $24 billion annually.
So get in shape for kidney health by getting screening tests, better nutrition, exercise, and take doctor-directed medications and supplements.
Did you know that 1 in 3 American adults is at risk for kidney disease? It is true. What puts many people at risk for kidney disease? Major risk factors include diabetes, high blood pressure, a family history of kidney failure, and being age 60 or older.
Unfortunately, kidney disease often has no symptoms, and it can go undetected until very advanced. But a simple urine test can tell you if you have kidney disease. Ask your doctor about Albumin Creatinine Ratio (ACR) which estimates the amount of a type of protein, albumin, that is in your urine.
Further, it might be good to ask your doctor about getting a quick blood test too. By drawing blood can give your doctor useful information about your Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR). This tells how well your kidneys are working to remove wastes from your blood. It is the best way to check kidney function. Over 90 is good, 60-89 should be monitored, less than 60 for 3 months indicates kidney disease.
Remember, it’s important to get tested because early detection and treatment can slow or prevent the progression of kidney disease. Here are some helpful things to discuss with your doctor at your annual physical.
Here are a few tips for avoiding kidney problems:
-Be aware of the signs and symptoms of kidney disease
-Monitoring your blood pressure will help prevent kidney disease
-Kidney disease is common in people with diabetes
-Doctors recommend a diet high in protein, salt, fluids, and potassium to manage kidney disease
-Some medications can cause kidney disease
-It is important to avoid substances that can cause injury to your kidneys such as tobacco and alcohol
What are the signs of Kidney Disease?
- You’re more tired, have less energy or are having trouble concentrating. A severe decrease in kidney function can lead to a buildup of toxins and impurities in the blood. This can cause people to feel tired, weak and can make it hard to concentrate. Another complication of kidney disease is anemia, which can cause weakness and fatigue.
- You’re having trouble sleeping. When the kidneys aren’t filtering properly, toxins stay in the blood rather than leaving the body through the urine. This can make it difficult to sleep. There is also a link between obesity and chronic kidney disease, and sleep apnea is more common in those with chronic kidney disease, compared with the general population.
- You have dry and itchy skin. Healthy kidneys do many important jobs. They remove wastes and extra fluid from your body, help make red blood cells, help keep bones strong and work to maintain the right amount of minerals in your blood. Dry and itchy skin can be a sign of the mineral and bone disease that often accompanies advanced kidney disease, when the kidneys are no longer able to keep the right balance of minerals and nutrients in your blood.
- You feel the need to urinate more often. If you feel the need to urinate more often, especially at night, this can be a sign of kidney disease. When the kidneys filters are damaged, it can cause an increase in the urge to urinate. Sometimes this can also be a sign of a urinary infection or enlarged prostate in men.
- You see blood in your urine. Healthy kidneys typically keep the blood cells in the body when filtering wastes from the blood to create urine, but when the kidney’s filters have been damaged, these blood cells can start to “leak” out into the urine. In addition to signaling kidney disease, blood in the urine can be indicative of tumors, kidney stones or an infection.
- Your urine is foamy. Excessive bubbles in the urine – especially those that require you to flush several times before they go away—indicate protein in the urine. This foam may look like the foam you see when scrambling eggs, as the common protein found in urine, albumin, is the same protein that is found in eggs.
- You’re experiencing persistent puffiness around your eyes. Protein in the urine is an early sign that the kidneys’ filters have been damaged, allowing protein to leak into the urine. This puffiness around your eyes can be due to the fact that your kidneys are leaking a large amount of protein in the urine, rather than keeping it in the body.
- Your ankles and feet are swollen. Decreased kidney function can lead to sodium retention, causing swelling in your feet and ankles. Swelling in the lower extremities can also be a sign of heart disease, liver disease and chronic leg vein problems.
- You have a poor appetite. This is a very general symptom, but a buildup of toxins resulting from reduced kidney function can be one of the causes.
- Your muscles are cramping. Electrolyte imbalances can result from impaired kidney function. For example, low calcium levels and poorly controlled phosphorus may contribute to muscle cramping.
How do I keep a healthy kidney?
You may not think you need to worry about your kidneys, but they actually provide vital functions that keep you alive. These include regulating blood pressure, balancing electrolytes, and producing urine that helps flush waste from your body. Kidneys also produce red blood cells, and if you experience renal failure, your kidneys can no longer remove waste from your body.
Other key functions of the kidneys include:
Producing important hormones such as renin, which regulates blood pressure, and erythropoietin, which stimulates red blood cell production.
1. excrete excess water, electrolytes, and wastes
2. regulate fluid volume and composition
3. produce erythropoietin
4. control pH
5. produce hormones
6. maintain long-term health
Thanks for reading this article about “How do you keep a Kidney Healthy? by Dr. Rosado
If you have any questions about your kidneys or kidney disease, please contact his offices. I hope this article helped you learn a little more about Dr. Joseph Rosado and shared the answers with you. If you want to learn more about this schedule an appointment with Dr. Rosado or purchase his book on Amazon.