Over 26 million Americans have a form of chronic kidney disease. Managing chronic kidney disease can slow the progression and avoid long-term health issues later on. National Kidney Month is underway, and this year’s focus is on how every person can prioritize their kidneys’ health. Those unaware of their risk join the millions of others in the nation as we march into kidney disease awareness.
Take 5 for National Kidney Month
Millions are living with kidney disease. Unfortunately, most aren’t aware anything is wrong until symptoms appear. Taking care of your kidneys now, mainly if you are at risk, is something we all should do. This is the heart of the 2021 National Kidney Month this March. The National Kidney Foundation reminds us to Take 5 for our kidneys with these simple steps:
- Get Tested! Ask your doctor for an ACR urine test or a GFR blood test annually if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, are over age 60 or have a family history of kidney failure.
- Reduce NSAIDs. Over-the-counter pain medicines, such as NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), can harm the kidneys, especially if you already have kidney disease. Reduce your regular use of NSAIDs and never go over the recommended dosage.
- Cut the Processed Foods. Processed foods can be significant sources of sodium, nitrates, and phosphates. These have been linked to cancer, heart disease, and kidney disease. Try adopting the DASH diet to guide your healthy eating habits.
- Exercise Regularly. Your kidneys like it when you exercise. Regular exercise will keep your bones, muscles, blood vessels, heart, and kidneys healthy. Getting active for at least 30 minutes a day can also help you control blood pressure and lower blood sugar, which is vital to kidney health.
- Control Blood Pressure and Diabetes. High blood pressure and diabetes are the leading causes of kidney disease and kidney failure. Managing high blood pressure and strict control of blood sugar levels can slow the progression of kidney disease. Speak with your doctor if you are having trouble managing diabetes or high blood pressure.
Various health conditions can harm the kidneys and reduce their ability to function over time. Those living with these conditions work to manage them through lifestyle changes and their involvement of a team of health providers. There are no days off with kidney disease. Every waking moment consisting of carefully orchestrating checkboxes, diligence, and balance.
The kidneys have the shape of fists for a reason. They are vital to the overall health of our body. As we learn more about the different conditions that affect the kidneys, we inch closer to improving the patient’s health living with kidney disease. Clinical research study volunteers directly contribute to medical advancements through their experiences as kidney disease patients.
If you’re at risk and don’t focus on kidney disease now, it may focus on you later on. To learn more about enrolling studies for those with kidney disease here at Clinical Site Partners, call (407) 740-8078 or visit our website.