How to keep your Kidneys healthy

How to keep your Kidneys healthy

Healthy kidneys are essential to maintain good health as they are one of the most important organs in the human body. They are responsible for controlling blood pressure, purifying the blood, filtering toxic materials from what we consume, and processing these wastes into a form in which they can be passed out of the body. Now imagine the kidney as your own house. Would you be able to live in your house if you lacked the ability to clean it up every day? Where people go in and out as they wish, throw stuff around, and then leave without cleaning up, would you be able to tolerate that? The answer is clearly no. The stench and pile of garbage would disgust you till you either get someone to clean it up for you or leave the house.

Kidney Failure

A damaged kidney is even worse. If the kidney loses the ability to regulate anything or get rid of toxic substances, the kidney would shut down leading to a chronic disorder and possible death if not remedied. To avoid all of this and keep your kidneys healthy, you should consciously abide by these tips:

Quit Smoking

That could have been put mildly but you need to understand the detriment of smoking not just to your kidneys but to your whole body. The warning that smokers are liable to die young is not a threat. Inhaling smoke into your system could choke your blood vessels and cause kidney damage or lead to high blood pressure which may result in kidney failure.
Smoking could also alter the effects of medications used in treating hypertension.

Drink Enough Water

Drink enough water daily. Severe dehydration is known to be one of the major causes of kidney stones. Drinking enough water helps the kidneys to regulate blood pressure and aid the transportation of waste materials such as urine and sweat which are produced by the kidneys.

Reduce your salt intake

One of the functions of the kidney is to process sodium which is present in salt. Excess intake of this sodium would put lots of pressure on the kidney therefore disrupting the chemical balance of the kidney. This affects the ability of the kidney to extract water. Subsequently, this could lead to high blood pressure and also affect the arteries linked to the brain. The recommended sodium intake is an estimate of five to six grams in a day. To effectively control your sodium intake, reduce the consumption of processed foods as you have little or no control over the quantity of salt used in these products.

Check your blood pressure regularly

High blood pressure is one of the major health issues that lead to kidney failure and is recognized as the second leading cause of kidney damage. It could cause the arteries linked to the kidneys to constrict. This constriction prevents the flow of oxygen to the nephrons and blood to the kidneys. Being aware of the level of your blood pressure would help you take precautionary measures if it is on the high side. One way to keep your blood pressure in check is to exercise. Regular exercise helps the heart function better and reduce blood pressure.

Do not take pills without prescription

Some antibiotics, diuretics, and especially steroids such as ibuprofen are known to have negative effects on the kidneys. These medications could be effective in treating other health conditions but may damage your kidneys in the process. Therefore, it is advisable to avoid self-medication and only take drugs on prescription. In a case where the kidney is having issues, some other drugs could worsen the already existing condition

Avoid taking alcohol

Avoid taking alcohol but if you must, do not take more than three drinks a day. Alcohol reduces the ability of the hypothalamus to produce antidiuretic hormones which are responsible for informing the kidneys on the amount of water to store in the body. When this happens, the kidney does not function properly and if repeated continuously, could lead to kidney issues. Excessive drinking can also increase blood pressure which as stated earlier, could lead to kidney damage.

Check your sugar level regularly

Check your sugar level regularly. Type II diabetes, which is a result of having too much sugar in the blood, could harm your nerves and cause accumulation of waste in the system. This would consequently damage the kidneys.

When you are able to keep a healthy lifestyle, your chances of having kidney issues would reduce drastically. Make it a habit to get checked up by a doctor regularly. This would keep you abreast of any negative changes in your body and if necessary, commence treatment before it deteriorates.

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Author: Dr.Aurelysmar GrimandecollantesDr.Aurelysmar is 29 years old MD and medical writer. Medical degree from the Universidad Centroccidental "Lisandro Alvarado", Venezuela, 2014. Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety, Venezuela, 2015. Course: Specialized Health Training for Physicians, Spain, 2017.