Your kidneys are a pair of organs located toward your lower back. One kidney is on each side of your spine. They filter your blood and remove toxins from your body. Your kidneys send toxins to your bladder. Your body later removes toxins during urination.
Kidney failure occurs when your kidneys lose the ability to filter waste from your blood sufficiently. Many factors can interfere with your kidney health and function, such as:
Your body becomes overloaded with toxins if your kidneys can't do their regular job. This can lead to kidney failure and even be life-threatening if it's left untreated.
Scores from these tests tell you how strong your kidneys are now. Because kidney diseases can be symptom-free, you may not notice anything wrong before you've suffered irreparable damage. To prevent getting in that situation, I advise you to:
1. Drink enough water. This is the most important step in keeping kidneys strong. At a minimum, I recommend you drink one-half ounce of water for every pound you weight, so a 200 pound man would drink 100 ounces of water every day. Drink more after strenuous exercise or if you live in a dry climate.
2. Take daily probiotics. Probiotics (good bacteria) help your kidneys process waste materials and contribute to overall digestive health. A recent clinical trial involving patients with chronic kidney disease found that the group taking probiotics improved kidney function test scores as well as overall quality of life.
3. Lower your phosphorous intake. When kidneys don't work well, phosphorus accumulates in the body, causing potentially serious conditions, such as bone and heart disorders, as well as calcification (hardening) of tissues.
Phosphorous is found in most foods, but carbonated soft drinks and prepared, processed foods are especially high in phosphorus. You only need 800 mg to 1,200 mg of phosphorus each day; higher amounts are flushed from the body by healthy kidneys.
4. Drink green juice. Green foods aid in detoxification. I juice cilantro, a kidney-friendly herb, with water, lemon juice, and honey. If you don't juice, a greens supplement is a good alternative.
5. Eat kidney-supportive foods, in addition to cilantro and its relative parsley, try these:
6. Lose weight. Obesity has been linked to an increased likelihood of developing kidney cancer.
7. Avoid pain relievers, especially non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin), naproxen (Aleve), and acetaminophen (Tylenol). Products like these are very hard on the kidneys. Even worse, researchers have found that these drugs increase the risk of developing kidney cancer. Never mix NSAIDs and alcohol.
8. Take a bath in Epsom salts. This is a basic detoxification measure. Removing waste and toxins gives your kidneys a boost while improving your overall health.
9. Control your blood. High blood pressureand diabetes are two big threats to your kidney function. Controlling your blood sugar and blood pressure are your best bets for maintaining normal kidney function.
10. Stop smoking or other uses of tobacco. The toxins damage your kidneys.
Many different symptoms can occur during kidney failure. Usually someone with kidney failure will have a few symptoms of the disease, though sometimes none are present. Possible symptoms include:
People who are most at risk for kidney failure usually have one or more of the following causes:
Loss of blood flow to the kidneys
A sudden loss of blood flow to your kidneys can prompt kidney failure. Some diseases and conditions that cause loss of blood flow to the kidneys include:
What can you do for your kidneys?
Kidney diseases are silent killers, which will largely affect your quality of life. There are however several easy ways to reduce the risk of developing kidney disease.
Keep fit and active
Keeping fit helps to reduce your blood pressure and therefore reduces the risk of Chronic Kidney Disease.
The concept "on the move for kidney health" is a worldwide collective march involving the public, celebrities and professionals moving across a public area by walking, running and cycling. Why not join them – by whatever means you prefer! Check out the events section of the WKD website for more information.
Keep regular control of your blood sugar level
About half of people who have diabetes develop kidney damage, so it is important for people with diabetes to have regular tests to check their kidney functions.
Kidney damage from diabetes can be reduced or prevented if detected early. It is important to keep control of blood sugar levels with the help of doctors or pharmacists, who are always happy to help.
Monitor your blood pressure
Although many people may be aware that high blood pressure can lead to a stroke or heart attack, few know that it is also the most common cause of kidney damage.
The normal blood pressure level is 120/80. Between this level and 139/89, you are considered prehypertensive and should adopt lifestyle and dietary changes. At 140/90 and above, you should discuss the risks with your doctor and montior your blood pressure level regularly. High blood pressure is especially likely to cause kidney damage when associated with other factors like diabetes, high cholesterol and Cardio- Vascular Diseases.
Eat healthy and keep your weight in check
This can help prevent diabetes, heart disease and other conditions associated with Chronic Kidney Disease.
Reduce your salt intake. The recommended sodium intake is 5-6 grams of salt per day (around a teaspoon). In order to reduce your salt intake, try and limit the amount of processed and restaurant food and do not add salt to food. It will be easier to control your intake if you prepare the food yourself with fresh ingredients.
Maintain a healthy fluid intake
Although clinical studies have not reached an agreement on the ideal quantity of water and other fluids we should consume daily to maintain good health, traditional wisdom has long suggested drinking 1.5 to 2 litres (3 to 4 pints) of water per day.
Consuming plenty of fluid 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, according to researchers in Australia and Canada. The findings, the researchers said, do not advocate "aggressive fluid loading", which can cause side effects, but they do provide evidence that moderately increased water intake, around two litres daily, may reduce the risk of decline in kidney function. It's important to keep in mind that the right level of fluid intake for any individual depends on many factors including gender, exercise, climate, health conditions, pregnancy and breast feeding. In addition, people who have already had a kidney stone are advised to drink 2 to 3 litres of water daily to lessen the risk of forming a new stone.
Do not smoke
Smoking slows the flow of blood to the kidneys. When less blood reaches the kidneys, it impairs their ability to function properly. Smoking also increases the risk of kidney cancer by about 50 percent.
Do not take over-the-counter pills on a regular basis
Common drugs such non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen are known to cause kidney damage and disease if taken regularly.
Such medications probably do not pose significant danger if your kidneys are relatively healthy and you use them for emergencies only, but if you are dealing with chronic pain, such as arthritis or back pain, work with your doctor to find a way to control your pain without putting your kidneys at risk.
The kidneys are responsible for filtering waste products from the blood. Dialysis is a procedure that is a substitute for many of the normal functions of the kidneys. The kidneys are two organs located on either side in the back of the abdominal cavity. Dialysis can allow individuals to live productive and useful lives, even though their kidneys no longer work adequately. Statistics from 2015, U.S. Renal Data System Annual Data Report (USRDS), showed approximately 468,000 patients were receiving dialysis in the United States. More than an additional 193,000 patients had a functioning kidney transplant for end stage renal disease.
Dialysis helps the body by performing the functions of failed kidneys. The kidney has many roles. An essential job of the kidney is to regulate the body's fluid balance. It does this by adjusting the amount of urine that is excreted on a daily basis. On hot days, the body sweats more. Thus, less water needs to be excreted through the kidneys. On cold days, the body sweats less. Thus, urine output needs to be greater in order to maintain the proper balance within the body. It is the kidney's job to regulate fluid balance by adjusting urine output.
Another major duty of the kidney is to remove the waste products that the body produces throughout the day. As the body functions, cells use energy. The operation of the cells produces waste products that must be removed from the body. When these waste products are not removed adequately, they build up in the body. An elevation of waste products, as measured in the blood, is called "azotemia." When waste products accumulate they cause a sick feeling throughout the body called "uremia," which is due to urea and other nitrogenous waste compounds
Anyone can get CKD. Some people are more at risk than others. Some things that increase your risk for CKD include:
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) usually gets worse slowly, and symptoms may not appear until your kidneys are badly damaged. In the late stages of CKD, as you are nearing kidney failure (ESRD), you may notice symptoms that are caused by waste and extra fluid building up in your body.
You may notice one or more of the following symptoms if your kidneys are beginning to fail:
If your kidneys stop working suddenly (acute kidney failure), you may notice one or more of the following symptoms:
Having one or more of any of the symptoms above may be a sign of serious kidney problems. If you notice any of these symptoms, you should contact your doctor right away.
Diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of CKD. If you have diabetes or high blood pressure, working with your doctor to keep your blood sugar and blood pressure under control is the best way to prevent kidney disease.
Living a healthy lifestyle can help prevent diabetes, high blood pressure and kidney disease, or help keep them under control. Follow these tips to lower your risk for kidney disease and the problems that cause it: