Kidney health is a key component of overall health. Whether you have diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, or have a family history of kidney failure, which increases the risk of developing kidney disease or not at risk, taking care of your kidneys is critical. The kidneys serve many specific functions in the body, with the removal of toxins from the blood being a key responsibility. Other duties include keeping your other organs healthy, distributing minerals throughout the body, balancing bodily fluids, and regulating blood pressure, among other important duties. Call or visit AFC Urgent Care Worcester for more information on staying and maintaining your health.
More than 37 million American adults are affected by kidney disease. When kidney disease manifests itself, there is some kind of damage to your kidneys, and that they cannot carry out blood filtration as normal. Managing underlying chronic illnesses that can cause kidney damage, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, can help to prevent kidney disease. If your kidneys aren’t performing at an optimal level, certain symptoms and signs can be an indicator that there is a problem. One or more of the following symptoms could mean kidney-ill health: hand or ankles swell, fatigue, fogginess and lack of focus, frequent urination, muscle spasm, and upset stomach or vomiting.
Ways to Maintain Healthy Kidneys
There are several things that you can do to maintain kidney health.
Drinking adequate amounts of water daily is great for our kidneys. Staying hydrated helps strengthen the kidneys and keep kidney stones at bay by diluting your urine rich in minerals and salts. The recommended 4 to 6 glasses of water should do the trick.
Eat Healthy and Include More Vegetables
Healthy eating habits can help to control chronic conditions, like diabetes and high blood pressure. Including more green in your diet can supply the body with key nutrients. Limit your meat intake, particularly red meat, which can impact kidney health.
Just as eating healthy is important to kidney health, so is exercising regularly. Regular physical activity can help you maintain a healthy weight and minimize strain on your kidneys. Physical activity for 30 minutes a day is beneficial for your kidneys’ health. Persons at high risk for heart disease should be cautious about the type of exercise activities that interest them and consult with their physician before beginning any exercise program.
Smoking is bad for your health, period, which suggests that it’s bad for your kidneys. Smoking can directly lead to the narrowing of your blood vessels and cause the arteries to harden. The hardening of the arteries can lead to nephrosclerosis, a form of kidney disease. Quit smoking and seek assistance if you need support.
Limit Alcohol Consumption
Drinking excessively can impair the kidneys and make them less effective at carrying out their functions, such as filtering blood and allowing the body to retain an adequate amount of water. Drinking alcohol in moderation helps to keep the kidneys functioning properly. It limits calorie intake and helps to keep your blood pressure under control. Women should stick to one drink a day, while men can consume two drinks of alcohol a day.
You have a responsibility to protect your kidneys, especially if you have underlying health problems. Your kidneys are responsible for critical functions in the body, and their impairment could impact your overall health and wellbeing. Be proactive and do what’s necessary to maintain kidney health.