How to keep your kidneys healthy?
As with every other vital organ of the body, it is a very good idea to do everything you can to preserve your kidney’s health and prevent some serious diseases that can impact your lifestyle. Here are a few tips:
* Monitor your blood pressure:
Besides increasing the risk of stroke and heart attack, high blood pressure can also lead to kidney damage. In fact, it is one of its most common causes. You should regularly check your blood pressure because it is a silent condition – it doesn’t have any symptoms. If your blood pressure is constantly high, you should consider a major lifestyle change.
*Monitor your blood sugar level:
Just like hypertension, diabetes could also seriously damage your kidneys. That happens because when blood sugar levels are too high, kidneys start to filter a greater volume of blood, putting a lot of stress on them. Eventually, they may start to fail. Even if you don’t have diabetes, you should regularly check your blood sugar levels. High blood sugar levels combined with high blood pressure will endanger the functioning of the kidneys.
*Exercising and healthy diet:
The benefits of physical activity extend to the kidneys as well, mostly because being active will reduce your blood pressure and help keep it at ideal levels.
In turn, a healthy diet will certainly help you prevent diabetes and heart disease, conditions that are heavily associated with kidney malfunction. You need to make sure that you drink enough water and that your daily salt intake is within recommended values. Besides these tips, there are a few specific healthy food choices that can help your kidneys: fatty fish (omega-3 which helps reducing fat levels in the blood and control blood pressure), apples (reduces high blood sugar and cholesterol levels), and sweet potatoes (being high in potassium can help balance sodium levels). Similarly, there are some foods to avoid, such as red meat and foods that are rich in phosphorus.
This combination of eating healthy and exercising regularly will help you achieve and/or keep a healthy weight. Remember that being overweight causes high blood pressure, which in turn influences your kidney’s health.
*Quit smoking and drinking too much:
There are dozens of reasons to stop smoking (or to never develop the habit of smoking in the first place), and your kidney’s health is one of them. Besides increasing blood pressure, smoking can also affect the medication used to lower blood pressure and is the main cause of kidney cancer. From apps like “Smoke-Free” to nicotine patches, there are many options out there to help you stop smoking. Talk to your doctor and ask him to help you out. The same applies to the overconsumption of alcoholic beverages.
*Be careful with your regular medication:
There are a lot of medicines that can cause kidney damage if used over an extended period. You should always carefully listen to your doctor’s recommendations and be extremely cautious when taking self-medication. Ibuprofen, for example, if taken in large doses and over a long period, it can damage your kidneys.