A healthy pair of kidneys in our body can be compared to a series of powerfully functional chemical factories. The amazing kidneys – they perform the life-sustaining job of filtration of body fluids and returning them to the bladders. Kidneys secrete and actively retain within the body, certain substances that are as critical to survival as those that are eliminated. Hence it’s vital not to put any strain on the kidneys and to keep them healthy in our day-to-day living.
Kidney diseases include acute Infections, chronic infections, kidney stones, CKD (Chronic Kidney Disease), and birth defects. Kidney damage can occur due to drugs, poisons, uncontrolled diabetes, uncontrolled high blood pressure, prolonged obstruction of the urinary tract (due to stones, tumor, or enlarged prostate), and repeated infections. CKD means a gradual loss of kidney function. Since the kidney has a lot of reserve function, patients do not have symptoms or very few symptoms until kidney function is significantly impaired. Once kidneys are damaged beyond repair, the only treatment is lifelong dialysis or a kidney transplant.
How can you take care of your kidneys?
Dr. Santosh Datar, Medical Director at Ziqitza Healthcare Ltd says while there are several ways to take care of your kidneys, leading a healthy lifestyle certainly tops the list. It also includes maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet, and exercising regularly. At Ziqitza we have listed down some of the things you must do to keep your kidney health in check:
- Drink an adequate amount of water
Drink enough water throughout the day to pass at least 1.5 liters of urine. You should ideally aim to drink two and a half or three liters of water throughout the day.
- Strictly monitor your protein intake
A lot of recent studies have shown that even if you are not suffering from any kidney disease but your protein intake is high, you can be at a higher risk of kidney damage. This is especially important for people who intake protein artificially (through protein powders and protein shakes) and end up consuming more than the required amount. As a rule of thumb, you may take 1 gram of protein per kilogram of your ideal body weight per day.
- Don’t consume pain killers and OTC medications like candies
Owing to our increasingly hectic lifestyles, headaches, backaches and sprains have become quite a common occurrence. As a result, people tend to pop painkillers and over-the-counter medications without giving a second thought to the threat these medicines pose to their kidneys. This quest for “instant relief”, may lead to kidney damage if the heavy dosage of these painkillers and OTC medicines are taken continuously for two to three years. (If you consume 2-3 kilos over 2-3 years, you are quite likely to damage your kidneys.)
- Keep your blood pressure under check
One of the most crucial aspects of preventing kidney disease is to strictly monitor your blood pressure. It is important to understand that uncontrolled high blood pressure can cause arteries around the kidneys to narrow, weaken or harden over time.
- Monitor your blood sugar levels regularly
If you are suffering from high blood pressure, diabetes, recurring urinary tract infection, recurrent kidney stone formation, or a family history of kidney disease, then you need to be very careful and closely monitor the health of your kidneys. These diseases may put you at the risk of developing kidney diseases in the future. This is why it is important to ensure that your blood sugar levels are under control.
Over the years at Ziqitza Limited Rajasthan we have noted that one of the key reasons for the usage of ambulances has been for people suffering from kidney disease and are undergoing long-term treatment. We at Ziqitza Limited believe it is crucial that prevention of Kidney disease should become an important goal for the medical fraternity and public at large to encourage its detection and treatment that help saves more life.
Our doctors at Ziqitza Healthcare suggest two simple tests which can be conducted to monitor kidney disease:
- Blood test
A simple blood test can help you monitor the Creatinine level in your blood. Since it is one of the substances that your kidney routinely filters out, high levels of the same in the blood may indicate that your kidneys are not functionally the way they should.
- Urine test
This test is done to determine whether or not you have a protein called Albumin in your urine. Since protein should be present in your blood and not in the urine, traces of Albumin in the urine may indicate that your kidney is not able to filter the blood properly