We all know that high blood pressure is bad for your heart, but did you know that it is the most common cause of kidney damage? That’s right, not only does it put stress on your chest, it’s also killing those kidneys!
We’ve come up with 8 helpful tips for keeping those kidney’s in working order and filtering out those toxins.
Keep fit and active
Sometimes easier said than done, especially for family caregivers, but this one is most important because you are a family caregiver! Staying fit lowers that blood pressure and has a ton of other benefits. If you can put in a heavy workout, don’t worry! Just be active however you can. If you need help, check out Kelly Jarrett’s exercise videos on our YouTube channel.
Watch that blood pressureWe’re all aware that high blood pressure can lead to a stroke or heart attack, the threat of kidney damage may be new to many of us. Work with your health care team to make sure you stay in a safe range.
Take control of your blood sugar level
50% of people who have diabetes also suffer kidney damage, so it is important for people with diabetes to have regular tests to check their kidney functions.
Since kidney damage from diabetes can be reduced or prevented if detected early, it is important to keep control of blood sugar levels. JUST PUT DOWN THE DONUT...
Think before you eat
Eating a healthy diet and watching your weight gain can prevent diabetes, heart disease and other conditions associated with Chronic Kidney Disease. So start watching everything that gets past your lips and over your gums.
Get those fluids!
Although the experts can’t agree on how much water you should drink, they all agree you need to stay hydrated. Staying hydrated helps the kidneys clear sodium, urea and toxins from the body which, in turn, results in a significantly lower risk of developing chronic kidney disease. Research does not advocate “aggressive fluid loading”, (which can cause side effects), but it does provide evidence that moderately increased water intake, around two litres daily, may reduce the risk kidney disease.
Do not smoke
Smoking slows the flow of blood to the kidneys. Less blood reaching the kidneys, impairs their ability to function properly.
Watch those NSAIDs
Common drugs like ibuprofen are known to cause kidney damage and disease if taken regularly. The danger is lessened if your kidneys are relatively healthy, and you use them for emergencies only.
Keep your Doctor in the loop
You may need to get regular kidney function tests if you have one of these “High Risk Factors”:
- you have diabetes
- you have hypertension
- you are obese
- one of your parents or other family members suffers from kidney disease
- you are of African, Asian, or Aboriginal origin