The kidney is one of the most important organs in your organism – they make sure that all the toxins your body has absorbed leave it without bringing any damage. According to statistics, more than 33% of Americans are at risk of kidney disease. When it comes to worldwide data, it is estimated that around 10% of the global population is affected by CKD (chronic kidney disease) – millions of them die each year due to the lack of access to affordable treatment.
As you can see, taking care of your kidneys is essential. Often, people who neglect their kidneys don’t even know they are sick until it is too late, in which case dialysis or even a transplant is needed. However, that raises a question – how can you know if you have kidney problems? Well, the easiest way is to get tested. Once you go to the doctor, ask them to test both your blood and your urine.
Many people don’t go to the doctor because they don’t want to believe that something is wrong with their body. They go as far as buying fake urine, such as Clear Choice, when they need to get tested. While fear is a natural human mechanism, it’s better to know then wait until it’s too late.
However, all this doesn’t change the fact that the best way of protecting yourself is prevention. The more you take care of your kidneys, the lower chance you have of falling ill. So, here are some easy steps to follow if you want to take good care of your kidneys.
Remember to Stay Hydrated
We probably don’t need to tell you how important it is to stay hydrated. The best way of doing so is to drink plenty of water and throughout the day. According to the U.S. National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine, the adequate amount of fluids one should intake daily is around 3.7 liters (125 ounces) for men and 2.7 liters (91 ounces) for women.
The amount needed might differ depending on the situation. For example, when you are traveling to a country with a different climate than yours or exercising strenuously, the intake needed will be higher than when you are just staying home and working.
Be Careful With You Diet
A balanced diet is crucial not only for your kidneys but overall health. By choosing foods that complement each other, you can give your body all the vitamins and minerals it needs to function properly. Try to limit salty or fatty foods – instead, eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, and grains (e.g., bread, pasta).
Check Your Blood Pressure Regularly
In order to stay healthy, you should have your blood pressure checked regularly – especially since high blood pressure has no symptoms, meaning that you can suffer from it without even knowing. People with high blood pressure are more prone to kidney and heart issues.
If you don’t have a blood pressure monitor at home, you can check it free of charge at most pharmacies, as well as in the general practitioner’s clinic. If it is too high, your GP might advise you to change your lifestyle or prescribe medication if needed.
Keep in mind – the ideal blood pressure is considered to be between 90/60 mmHg and 120/80 mmHg.
Avoid Smoking or Drinking Alcohol
The fact that alcohol and cigarettes have a negative impact on your health is nothing new, which is why you should consider cutting down on both of them. However, if you cannot imagine your week without a glass of wine or something stronger, just remember to not drink more than 14 units of alcohol a week on a regular basis.
How exactly do alcohol and cigarettes impact kidneys? Well, alcohol makes your kidneys less able to filter the blood, which means fewer toxins are leaving your body. What’s more, it also dehydrates your body, which can affect the functioning of several organs, including the kidneys.
Try to Keep a Healthy Weight
People who suffer from obesity are more prone to high blood pressure, which is one of the most common causes of kidney disease. That’s why you should try to maintain a healthy weight. If you don’t know what’s the right weight for your age and height, a good idea is to use the BMI calculator.
If it turns out that your BMI is too high, you might have to change your lifestyle a little bit – for example, change the diet to one with fewer calories, or increase the physical activity you get during the week.
The Bottom Line
There are many conditions that affect people these days – one of them being kidney disease or problems with kidneys in general. According to statistics, more or less 10% of the worldwide population is affected by them. Thankfully, however, there are many ways in which you can lower the risk of falling ill with it.
Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated, keep a healthy weight, balance your diet well, check your blood pressure regularly – these are just a few things you can do to minimize the chances of developing kidney disease. If you want to find out more about what to do, you should get in touch with a doctor – since they have a broader knowledge of this topic, they will be able to tell you exactly what you should do.