Central Coast News
Are Your Kidneys Healthy? 6 Ways to Keep Your Kidneys Healthy and Well
Did you know: One in three people living in Australia is at increased risk of kidney disease, and 90% of kidney function can be lost without experiencing any symptoms?
Kidney Health Week being held 5th-11th March 2018 is about raising awareness about kidney health across Australia. With around 1.7 million Australians aged 18 years and over (one in every ten adults) having signs of chronic kidney disease, this is definitely something to be aware of. Below we cover what kidneys do and highlight more about some of signs that something might be wrong with your kidneys and what to do to keep kidneys healthy and well.
What do kidneys do?
The role of the kidneys is often underrated when we think about our health. In fact, the kidneys play a vital role in the daily workings of your body. Some of the things the kidneys do is remove excess waste and fluid, control blood pressure, make red blood cells, keep bones healthy and control pH levels. They are so important that nature gave us two kidneys, to cover the possibility that one might be lost to an injury.
What are the signs that something might be wrong with kidneys?
- high blood pressure
- changes in the amount and number of times urine is passed
- changes in the appearance of your urine (for example, frothy or foaming urine)
- blood in your urine
- puffiness in your legs, ankles or around your eyes
- pain in your kidney area
- loss of appetite
- difficulty sleeping
- lack of concentration
- shortness of breath
- nausea and vomiting
- bad breath and a metallic taste in the mouth
- muscle cramps
- pins and needles in your fingers or toes.
These symptoms are very general and may be caused by other illnesses. However, if they are related to kidney disease they may gradually worsen as kidney function declines.
If you are experiencing a number of these symptoms, or think you are at increased risk of kidney disease, please see you doctor.
6 ways to keep your kidneys healthy and well
Your kidneys play a significant role in the daily workings of your body and help maintain your general health and wellbeing, so it makes good sense to take good care of them.
Some key recommendations are:
1. Regular blood pressure checks
Get your blood pressure checked regularly and make sure it stays below the levels recommended by your doctor.
2. Keep glucose under control
If you have diabetes make sure you monitor your blood glucose levels and stay within your targets.
3. Be active and live a healthy lifestyle
It is important to maintain a healthy weight for your height. The food you eat, and how active you are, help to control your weight. Drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can lead to heart disease and high blood pressure, increasing your risk of kidney disease.
It’s also recommended that you do at least 30 minutes of physical activity most days of the week – exercise leads to increased strength, stamina and energy.
4. Quit smoking
Stopping smoking is the simplest, most important lifestyle habit to change if you want to reduce your risk of kidney disease. People who smoke are three times more likely to have reduced kidney function, with four to five times greater risk of heart attack and stroke.
5. Choose H20
Choosing water as your preferred drink will have a positive impact on your health. Water has a huge list of health benefits and it contains no kilojoules, is inexpensive and readily available. Water can also contain fluoride, which is good for your teeth. Choosing to drink water and being careful about your fluid intake can help keep your kidneys healthy.
Also keep in mind that being thirsty is often a sign of already being dehydrated.
6. Treat kidney stones quickly
Being mindful of the risks and symptoms of kidney stones is an important part of caring for your kidneys. It is important to treat kidney stones quickly to ensure optimal kidney health.
If you have any concerns about your kidneys, please see your doctor. The team at Providence Medical will be happy to assist and are welcoming new patients.
Three convenient locations offering a fresh approach to your health care:
472 The Esplanade, Warners Bay NSW 2282
Shop 3-6, Belmont Central Shopping Centre, 1 Singleton St, Belmont NSW 2290
4 Bunbury St, Thornton NSW 2322
Kidney Health Australia
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