National Kidney Month Is Here – Keep Your Kidneys Healthy

National Kidney Month Is Here – Keep Your Kidneys Healthy

by | Mar 1, 2024 | National Days, Patient Education

National Kidney Month is here and what better time than now to learn more your kidneys? At Balboa Nephrology, we continue to raise awareness about the importance of kidney health.  Did you know 1 in 3 adults in the US is at risk of kidney disease?  Your kidneys filter about 200 liters of blood EVERY day! That’s why keeping them healthy is crucial.  You are more likely to develop Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease or a family history of kidney failure.

So what can you do to keep your kidneys healthy?

During you next doctor visit, ask your healthcare provider about your kidney health. Knowing about kidney disease early can make a difference in prolonging good kidney health. Many times, early kidney disease may not have any symptoms, so getting tested may be your only way to know your kidneys are healthy.  It only takes two simple tests ordered by your physician – a blood test known as the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) and a urine test known as the urine albumin-creatinine ratio (uACR). Both tests are needed to have a clear picture of your kidney health.

Make healthy food choices.  According to the NIDDKD (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases), choose foods that are healthy for your heart and your entire body: fresh fruits, fresh or frozen vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat or fat-free dairy products. Eat healthy meals, and cut back on salt and added sugars. Aim for less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium each day. Try to have less than 10 percent of your daily calories come from added sugars.

Exercise! We know. For some, it’s easier said than done. But try to make physical activity part of your routine.  Just 20-30 minutes a day can make a difference.

Get enough sleep.  According to the National Kidney Foundation, kidney function is actually regulated by the sleep-wake cycle. It helps coordinate the kidneys’ workload over 24 hours. Nocturnal patterns can affect chronic kidney disease and people who sleep less usually have faster kidney function decline.

Stop smoking and limit alcohol intake. Drinking alcohol can increase your blood pressure and add extra calories, which can lead to weight gain.  If you smoke or use other tobacco products, stop. Ask for help so you don’t have to do it alone. You can start by calling the national quitline at 1-800-QUITNOW or 1-800-784-8669. For tips on quitting, go to Smokefree.gov.

You’ll find more great information about preventing CKD by visiting the NIDDK.  Join us in learning more about prevention, early detection, and healthy living for your kidneys by watching the Balboa Nephrology YouTube Channel to see short, informative videos featuring Balboa Nephrology doctors discussing kidney care in down-to-earth terminology.  And if you’re interested in finding additional kidney health help, visit our Resources Page.

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