Take Care of Your Kidneys
March is National Kidney Month, and
it’s a good time to talk about those two vital organs that work all day long to
filter waste products from the blood, and to produce urine. Kidney disease
affects 20 million Americans. It can take years to develop, but occasionally
happens quickly due to an illness or injury or taking certain medications.
Protect your kidneys. Reduce the
risk factors for kidney disease by controlling diabetes and high blood
pressure, and avoiding cardiovascular disease – all kidney stressors.
In early kidney disease there are
usually no symptoms. You would need
blood work to check the glomerular
filtration rate (GFR) and a urine test to see if there is excess protein
(albumin) spilling. Both are signs that something might be up with your
Reduce your risk for kidney damage:
reduce your salt/sodium intake
have good fluid intake each day
keep your blood sugar (glucose), blood pressure and cholesterol levels in
the normal range
Of course, kidney care really begins
with taking care of your overall health – keep up with your medical
appointments; have lab work done when recommended (blood and urine); take
medications to control your diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol; and
keep up with healthy lifestyle habits.
Maintain a lean weight. And be active.