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World Kidney Day: Six Ways You May Unknowingly Damage Your Kidney

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It is no longer news that Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is unarguably one of the deadliest ailments globally with millions of people dying prematurely of its complications every year.

It is also said that between 8 and 10 per cent of the adult population have some form of kidney damage.

Kidneys remove wastes and extra fluid from the body. They also detoxify acid that is produced by the body cells and maintain a healthy balance of water, salts and minerals.

To widen sensitisation on the spate of CKD and how to curtail it, every March 10 is earmarked for World Kidney Day. Sadly, a number of people lead a life style that slowly damages their kidneys without even realising it. Daily Trust looks at six ways kidneys can be endangered.

Eating Processed Food 

Processed foods are significant sources of sodium and phosphorus. According to National Kidney Foundation, many people who have kidney disease need to limit phosphorus in their diets. Some studies have shown that high phosphorus intake from processed foods in people without kidney disease may be harmful to their kidneys and bones.

Do not miss sleep 

Sleep is important to health and having enough of it will help regulate your kidney’s workload. A good night’s rest is extremely important to your overall well-being and, it turns out, your kidneys. Kidney function is regulated by the sleep-wake cycle which helps coordinate the kidneys’ workload over 24 hours.

Eating too much meat 

Animal protein generates high amounts of acid in the blood that can be harmful to the kidneys and cause acidosis – a condition in which kidneys cannot eliminate acid fast enough. Protein is needed for growth, upkeep and repair of all parts of the body but your diet should be well balanced with fruits and vegetables.

Abusing painkiller 

You may have a peaceful mind taking painkillers, but if you have a kidney problem, this comes with enormous consequences. Over the counter pain medicines may alleviate your aches and pains, but they can harm the kidneys, especially if you already have kidney disease. Reduce your regular use of NSAIDs and never go over the recommended dosage.

Not drinking enough water

Staying well hydrated helps kidneys to clear sodium and toxins from the body. Drinking plenty of water is also one of the best ways to avoid painful kidney stones. Those with kidney problems or kidney failure may need to restrict their fluid intake, but for most people, drinking 1.5 to 2 liters (3 to 4 pints) of water per day is a healthy target.

Excess alcohol intake

Regular heavy drinking has been found to double the risk of CKD. Heavy drinkers who also smoke have an even higher risk of kidney problems. Smokers who are heavy drinkers have about five times the chance of developing chronic kidney disease than people who don’t smoke or drink alcohol to excess.


Source: Daily Trust