India is regarded as the Diabetes Capital of the World. As per the Indian Council of Medical Research, “The past three decades witnessed a 150 per cent increase in the number of people with diabetes in the country.”
Diabetes is directly related to high blood pressure and high sugar levels which are the most common causes of kidney diseases. Note that you are at a greater risk of kidney disease if you are a patient with diabetes.
It’s vital for diabetic patients to stick to a doctor-recommended diet for the prevention of kidney diseases.
Our kidneys play the role of a unique filtration system in the body. They filter about 180 litres of fluid in 24 hours. When blood passes through the kidneys, they filter it to remove waste and extra water in the form of urine.
Most of the useful proteins and nutrients from this fluid are returned to the blood. Kidneys are also responsible for several other functions in the body, some of which are listed below:
- Remove excess acid produced by the blood cells.
- Maintain a balance of Sodium, Calcium, Potassium, and Phosphorus levels in the blood.
- Produce hormones that regulate blood pressure and make red blood cells.
- Convert Vitamin D from the sun into an active form for calcium absorption in the body.
Prevention of Kidney Disease: Lifestyle & Diet Tips
Take a look at these lifestyle and diet tips that can help you prevent kidney failure naturally:
We know that this advice could be cliché! But it’s a known fact that you can keep your kidneys healthy if we consume plenty of water. And not just the kidneys, every part of your body needs water to function properly. If your body is dehydrated, it directly affects your kidneys.
Adequate water consumption helps the kidneys remove waste from the body as urine. It acts as a transport medium to transfer nutrients to the kidney for performing its essential functions. You are less likely to have kidney stones if your water intake is good, it prevents the small crystals from turning into painful stones.
If you are a diabetic patient, you must be experiencing frequent fluctuations in your blood sugar levels. The high blood sugar level is a major cause of chronic kidney failure in many people.
Over time, the high glucose in the blood damages the filtering system of the kidneys. It eventually leads to the overexertion of our kidneys. Keep an eye on your blood sugar levels, eat a low-salt & fat diet, and cut down on sugary foods to regulate your blood sugar.
Just as water is vital for kidney functioning, a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables helps our kidneys perform better. Include foods like lentils, beans, cabbage, garlic, onions, apples, and pumpkin seeds to balance your diet.
Being overweight tremendously raises the chances of diabetes and high blood pressure. Your kidneys have to exert extra effort to filter more waste than normal. As we said before, these two conditions may result in kidney diseases. Keep a check on your weight, engage in cardio exercises and control food portions if you are overweight.
High blood pressure is the other prominent cause of kidney failure. The blood vessels in the kidneys become narrow and weak due to the uncontrolled blood pressure. It leads to irreparable damage to the kidney arteries, over time the kidneys fail to filter fluids. Kidney failure may take years to progress, but high BP also puts you at the risk of heart disease and strokes. It’s important to manage your blood pressure levels for overall well-being.
A diet high in salt puts a strain on the kidney’s functioning and leads to potential kidney diseases. It also raises protein levels in the urine further increasing the chances of cardiovascular diseases.
Our kidneys need a balance of sodium and potassium to perform their functions correctly. They end up filtering less water due to this imbalance and there is also an increase in blood pressure levels. Doctors advise kidney patients to consume less sodium to regulate this balance in the body.
These lifestyle habits can be considered interdependent. Engaging in any form of exercise from cycling, running, walking, or swimming can improve your kidney health. Working out regularly benefits your body in numerous ways:
- Improved muscle strength
- Regulated blood pressure levels
- Controlled body weight
- Boosts heart health
We usually do not think much before popping a bill during a headache or fever, but this could unknowingly cause kidney damage. If taken in high doses, over-the-counter medicines like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen may reduce the amount of blood flow to your kidneys. It’s wise to consult with your doctor before taking any of these readily available medicines.
How to Prevent Kidney Failure Naturally?
The kidneys are an essential organ and their health cannot be ignored. If you consume junk frequently and have an inactive style of living, you are likely to face kidney damage over time.
At first, you might not realise it but with time these habits affect the kidneys’ functioning. This chronic kidney failure will be evident only after years or decades, where the damage may even become irreversible.
Eating healthy and keeping yourself active every day can help in the prevention of kidney disease. Mindful habits could significantly lower the risks of chronic kidney failure. We can’t stress this enough, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”