Guide to protect kidney health

Kidneys are vital to your overall health, so it’s important to look after them. Kidney disease is a major public health concern. Kidney disease often goes undetected until it is very advanced. Unfortunately, this is when someone would need dialysis or a transplant.

The key is to find kidney disease before the trouble starts. Regular testing for everyone is important, but it is especially important for people at risk.

Follow these steps to learn more about kidney disease, your risk, and how to prevent it.

Source: CHANGING HABITS

Step 1: Know these facts

6 things healthy kidneys do:

  • Regulate the body’s fluid levels
  • Filter wastes and toxins from the blood
  • Release a hormone that regulates blood pressure
  • Activate vitamin D to maintain healthy bones
  • Release the hormone that directs production of red blood cells
  • Keep blood minerals in balance (sodium, phosphorus, potassium)

8 problems kidney disease can cause:

  • Heart disease
  • Heart attack and stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Put your life at risk
  • Weak bones
  • Nerve damage (neuropathy)
  • Kidney failure (end-stage kidney disease, or ESRD)
  • Anemia or low red blood cell count

Step 2: Assess your risk

5 Main Risk Factors:

  • Diabetes (you or your family)
  • High blood pressure (you or your family)
  • Heart disease (you or your family
  • Family history of kidney failure, diabetes, or high blood pressure
  • Obesity

Additional risk factors:

  • Age 60 or older
  • Low birth weight
  • Prolonged use of NSAIDs, a type of painkillers, such as ibuprofen and naproxen
  • Lupus, other autoimmune disorders
  • Chronic urinary tract infections
  • Kidney stones

Knowing if you are at risk for kidney disease is the first step to a healthier life.

Step 3: Recognize symptoms

8 possible trouble signs:

Most people with early kidney disease have no symptoms, which is why early detection is critical. By the time symptoms appear, kidney disease may be advanced, and symptoms can be misleading. Pay attention to these:

  • Fatigue, weakness
  • Difficult, painful urination
  • Foamy urine
  • Pink, dark urine (blood in urine)
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased need to urinate (especially at night)
  • Puffy eyes
  • Swollen face, hands, abdomen, ankles, feet

Step 4: Get tested

If you or a loved one belong to a high-risk group, ask your primary-care physician about these tests—and be especially insistent about the last one. Your doctor may want to perform other tests as well.

3 simple, life-saving tests:

1. Blood pressure (BP test)

High blood pressure can damage small blood vessels (glomeruli) in the kidneys. It is the second-leading cause of kidney failure after diabetes.

Good Score: Below 140/90 is good for most people. Below 130/80 is better if you have chronic kidney disease. Below 120/80 is considered best. Check with your healthcare team to see what is right for you.

2. Protein in urine (urine test)

Traces of a type of protein, albumin, in the urine (albuminuria) may be an early sign of kidney disease. Regular amounts of albumin and other proteins in the urine (proteinuria) indicate kidney damage.

Good Score: Less than 30 mg of albumin per gram of urinary creatinine (a normal waste product)

3. Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) (blood test)

This measures how well the kidneys are filtering the blood. Doctors measure blood creatinine levels and perform a calculation to find out your glomerular filtration rate (GFR).

Good Score: Over 90 is good. 60-89 should be monitored. Less than 60 for 3 months indicates kidney disease.

Step 5: Stay healthy

6 things people with kidney disease should do:

  • Lower high blood pressure
  • Manage blood sugar levels
  • Reduce salt intake
  • Avoid NSAIDs, a type of painkiller
  • Moderate protein consumption
  • Get an annual flu shot

9 things everyone should do:

  • Exercise regularly
  • Control weight

Being too heavy raises your blood pressure, which is bad for your kidneys. Try to keep yourself at a healthy weight by keeping active and not overeating. Your body mass index (BMI) is a helpful way of checking whether you’re a healthy weight. You can use the healthy weight calculator to work out your BMI. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as walking, cycling or swimming, every week.

  • Follow a balanced diet: A balanced diet ensures you get all the vitamins and minerals your body needs. Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables, and grains such as wholewheat pasta, bread and rice. Don’t eat too much salty or fatty food.
  • Quit smoking: Smoking slows the flow of blood to the kidneys, which may reduce their function. Smoking also raises the risk of kidney cancer by about 50 percent.
  • Drink only in moderation

Smoking and drinking too much alcohol both raise your blood pressure. High blood pressure is one of the most common causes of kidney disease.

  • Stay hydrated: Drinking plenty of fluid will help your kidneys function properly. Your urine should be straw-coloured. If it’s any darker it may be a sign of dehydration.
  • Monitor cholesterol levels
  • Get an annual physical
  • Know your family medical history

Source: KIDNEY.ORG; UK NATIONAL HEALTH SERVICE; UROLOGY CARE FOUNDATION

About STELLA

Stellapharm is one of leading generics pharmaceutical companies and strong producer of anti-viral drugs in Vietnam. The company established in Vietnam in 2000; and focuses on both prescription drugs and non-prescription especially in cardiovascular diseases, antiviral drugs, anti-diabetics drugs, etc. and our products are now used by millions of patients in more than 50 countries worldwide.

The company is globally recognized for its quality through our facilities have been audited and approved by stringent authority like EMA, PMDA, Taiwan GMP, local WHO and others.

Additional information for this article: Stellapharm J.V. Co., Ltd. – Branch 1
A: 40 Tu Do Avenue, Vietnam – Singapore Industrial Park, An Phu Ward, Thuan An City, Binh Duong Province, Vietnam
T: +84 274 376 7470 | F: +84 274 376 7469 | E: info@stellapharm.com | W: www.stellapharm.com

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