Diet And Lifestyle Changes
How Diet Can Impact Kidney Health
The kidneys are filled with tiny blood vessels that help filter waste and extra water from your blood and remove them from your body. If you have CKD, your kidneys cant filter blood as well as they should, causing excess waste to build up in your body.
Diabetes and hypertension are the two leading causes of kidney disease. High blood sugar levels in uncontrolled diabetes and high blood pressure can damage the kidneys blood vessels, leaving them unable do their job properly, says Krista Maruschak, RD, a registered dietitian with Cleveland Clinics Center for Human Nutrition.
Untreated or uncontrolled diabetes and high blood pressure can have a significant effect on the development of CKD over time, says Maruschak.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 10 percent of the U.S. population has diabetes and over a third of adults have prediabetes, while about half of American adults age 20 and over have hypertension. These individuals are also at an increased risk of developing CKD.
A healthy diet can help you prevent or manage conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure, in part by helping you to maintain a healthy weight, says Maruschak. In turn, this supports your kidney health.
As part of a kidney-friendly diet, you may also need to limit certain foods to help prevent further kidney damage.
Metabolic Syndrome And Insulin Resistance
Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions that increase the risk of cardiovascular as well as kidney disease . Metabolic syndrome comprises abdominal obesity high blood pressure high fasting blood glucose and triglycerides and low levels of beneficial high-density lipoprotein cholesterol . Metabolic syndrome is also accompanied by insulin resistance . Insulin resistant cellsparticularly those of muscle and fat tissueno longer use insulin efficiently to remove glucose from the bloodstream, which predisposes to diabetes and high blood pressure . Both metabolic syndrome and insulin resistance may be predictors of kidney disease progression, even in the absence of high blood sugar levels . The components of metabolic syndrome have been independently associated with incidence and progression of chronic kidney disease increased albumin elimination in the urine and decreased glomerular filtration rate . Studies have estimated that metabolic syndrome may double the risk of CKD . The mechanisms by which metabolic syndrome leads to kidney disease are not completely understood, but inflammation, insulin resistance, oxidative stress, and dysfunction of the small blood vessels of the kidney are involved .
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Treatment For Kidney Disease
If detected early enough, the progress of kidney disease can be slowed and sometimes even prevented. In the early stages, changes to diet and medication can help to increase the life of your kidneys.
If kidney function is reduced to less than 10 per cent of normal, the loss of function must be replaced by dialysis or a kidney transplant. Dialysis is a treatment for kidney failure that removes waste products and extra water from the blood by filtering it through a special membrane .
How Are The Liver And Kidney Connected
Viscerally speaking, the upper pole of the right kidney is located just behind the liver.
Functionally, the liver and kidney are most notably connected via a series of reactions called the urea cycle, also known as the ornithine cycle, where:
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Before You Begin: Finding Your Gfr
Summary And Quick Facts For Kidney Health
- The kidneys support many critical functions, including filtering waste products out of the blood, regulating fluids and blood pressure and forming urine. Roughly 10% of American adults live with some degree of chronic kidney disease, which oftentimes goes undetected until it reaches an advanced stage.
- In this protocol you will learn how kidneys function and what factors, including use of common over-the-counter medications, can lead to chronic kidney disease. You will also discover simple tests used to detect kidney disease and many dietary and lifestyle strategies for supporting healthy kidney function. Several nutritional supplements shown to decrease risk of kidney disease are covered, as well.
- The strategies in this protocol, in combination with physician supervised treatment, can provide a well-rounded approach to ensuring optimal kidney health.
- Vitamin D has been shown in both clinical and observational studies to improve multiple parameters of kidney function in patients with chronic kidney disease.
The kidneys are one of the bodys critical filters, supporting water and fluid balance, blood pressure regulation, and waste elimination. Maintaining good kidney health is of the utmost importance if ones goal is to live a long and healthy life.
Natural interventions like vitamin D, coenzyme Q10 and N-acetyl L-cysteine help protect the kidneys.
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Be Careful With Alcohol
If youâre healthy, a drink or two isnât likely to hurt your kidneys. But binge drinking can cause sudden, serious damage and possibly lead to long-term problems. And alcohol often can dehydrate you, which can keep your kidneys from working well and lead to weight gain, liver disease, high blood pressure, and other conditions that put more stress on them.
Manage Diabetes High Blood Pressure And Heart Disease
If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or heart disease, the best way to protect your kidneys from damage is to
Keep blood glucose numbers close to your goal. Checking your blood glucose, or blood sugar, level is an important way to manage your diabetes. Your health care team may want you to test your blood glucose one or more times a day.
Keep your blood pressure numbers close to your goal. The blood pressure goal for most people with diabetes is below 140/90 mm Hg. Read more about high blood pressure.
Take all your medicines as prescribed. Talk with your health care provider about certain blood pressure medicines, called ACE inhibitors and ARBs, which may protect your kidneys. The names of these medicines end in pril or sartan.
Be careful about the daily use of over-the-counter pain medications. Regular use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as ibuprofen and naproxen, can damage your kidneys. Learn more about over-the-counter medicines and your kidneys.
To help prevent heart attacks and stroke, keep your cholesterol levels in the target range. There are two kinds of cholesterol in your blood: LDL and HDL. LDL or bad cholesterol can build up and clog your blood vessels, which can cause a heart attack or stroke. HDL or good cholesterol helps remove the bad cholesterol from your blood vessels. A cholesterol test also may measure another type of blood fat called triglycerides.
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Understanding The Liver And Kidney Connection
Ayurveda teaches how the mind, body, spirit, and even the universe are connected working together to bring health and vitality to all creation. It makes sense, then, that the liver and kidneys also work together, and are quite literally connected both physically and functionally. Its hard to look at liver health without looking at kidney health, so check out the functions of the liver and kidney, how they are connected, and some easy ayurvedic tips for keeping them functioning at their best.
Dont Overdo Certain Medications
NSAIDs are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, like ibuprofen and naproxen. They can damage your kidneys if you take too many at once or take them too often. And using proton pump inhibitors for an ulcer or GERD for a long time can raise your chances of chronic kidney disease. You should only take them if your doctor says you need them.
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Do They Work Together
Yes, the liver and kidney work together in many ways, including waste removal, sodium regulation, calcium absorption and more. For detoxification and waste removal, the liver breaks down toxins into two substances: bile and urea. While bile is sent through the digestive tract, urea is transported through the bloodstream directly to the kidneys where it is then excreted from the body as urine along with other toxic waste.
The liver and kidney also work together with the adrenal glands in water and sodium regulation. High levels of salt in the blood can greatly hinder circulation. So, as the chain of commands go, when there is a reduction in blood flow the kidneys send an enzyme called renin to the liver, which assists the liver in producing a substance that is sent to the adrenal glands. The adrenal glands are then cued to produce a hormone called aldosterone, which commands the kidneys to store salt and water.
In terms of calcium absorption, it all starts with the sun. When the sun hits your skin, its actually the liver that turns it into vitamin D. The vitamin D then travels through the bloodstream to the kidneys, where the kidneys turn it into calcitriol, a hormone that aids the intestines in absorbing calcium from food.
Diabetes And Kidney Disease
About 20 to 30 per cent of people with diabetes develop a type of kidney disease called diabetic nephropathy. This is a serious disease and may worsen other diabetic complications such as nerve and eye damage, as well as increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Diabetic nephropathy is the main cause of kidney failure .
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Take Care With Antibiotics
These bacteria-fighting drugs can damage your kidneys if you use them too often. It can happen even if youâre perfectly healthy, though itâs more serious if your kidneys donât work as well as they should. Some types, like penicillin, sulfonamides, and cephalosporins, are more likely to cause problems.
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Dietary And Lifestyle Considerations
- Avoid or minimize the use of NSAIDs by using the lowest effective dose for the shortest period of time
- Eat a Mediterranean-style diet or the DASH diet that is low in animal protein and high-glycemic carbohydrates, and high in vegetables, fruits, unsaturated fats, and fiber
- Increase dietary potassium and decrease dietary sodium
- Make sure to get enough vitamin D, vitamin B6, and vitamin B12
Note: Patients with advanced kidney disease should consult with their physician before making any dietary changes.
Caring For Your Kidneys
Some methods to improve kidney health are supported by science. You may wish to consider them before trying a kidney cleanse:
- Avoid smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol and caffeine.
- Maintain normal blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
- Keep your cholesterol under control.
- Drink enough water and other fluids.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
Although there is no evidence that a kidney cleanse can help prevent kidney stones, you may reduce your risk by drinking enough fluids and cutting back on sodium.
People with a history of kidney stones may want to avoid foods rich in oxalic acid, such as chocolate, okra, sweet potatoes, sesame seeds, greens, nuts, and spinach.
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Remember To Stay Away From The Following Danger Foods
Sugar use Nature Sweet insteadCandies and chocolate which are high in sugar some cheap chocolates contain hydrogenated vegetable oils which are most unhealthy. If you do indulge in a little chocolate the best types are the expensive dark chocolates!Foods containing refined flourDiet foods that claim to be slimming they are usually low in fat and high in sugar or aspartame, eg. diet-yogurts, diet jams, diet-ice-cream, diet-sodas, etc these diet foods are not slimming they are fattening if they contain sugar or aspartame! Read the labels.Fried snacks such as potato chips, tortilla chips, pretzels, etc.Meat jerky and preserved meatsPizzaFatty take away foods like fried fish and chips, lasagna and fried chickenDeep fried hot potato chipsBiscuits both sweet and savoury varieties, as they contain refined flour, hydrogenated vegetable oils, lard, shortening and if sweet, will be high in sugarBreads containing refined flour, crumpets, muffins, bagels and donuts, as they tend to be fattening for those with a fatty liver.Obviously we all like to eat unhealthy or junk foods on special occasions and this is fine if its a birthday, family celebration, Christmas or a one off special event. Its when these things become a regular part of your diet and lifestyle that you will find your liver suffers.
Reduce Your Dairy Intake
Salt isnt the only food thats harmful to your kidneys. Milk and dairy products increase the amount of calcium removed from your body via urine. This can increase the risk of kidney stones, especially if you dont drink much water and have a genetic predisposition.
- People who consume dairy products for the calcium should remember that calcium in dairy is not digested properly. It can damage your kidneys in the long term.
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Sglt2 Inhibitors And Chronic Kidney Disease
Sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitor drugs like dapagliflozin , canagliflozin , and empagliflozin are drugs used to treat type 2 diabetes. SGLT2 inhibitors reduce sodium and glucose reabsorption in the kidneys, resulting in increased glucose and sodium excretion in the urine .
SGLT2 inhibitors have been shown in large clinical trials to improve kidney-related outcomes in people with diabetes and those without diabetes. These benefits appear to be independent of these drugs glucose-lowering effects .
Although SGLT2 inhibitors come with important safety caveats, such as increased risks of genital fungal infection, urinary tract infection, and hypovolemia, these drugs are promising for the management of chronic kidney disease in appropriately selected patients .
For a detailed discussion of the potential benefits of SGLT2 inhibitors in the context of chronic kidney disease, please refer to Life Extensions Chronic Kidney Disease protocol and see the section titled SGLT2 Inhibitors in Chronic Kidney Disease.
Food With Diuretic Properties
A diuretic is any compound that stimulates increased production of urine, which is helpful in flushing out your kidneys. Natural foods that display diuretic properties include celery, parsley, dandelion root, cucumber, asparagus, eggplant, watercress, artichokes and watermelon. Drinking more pure, filtered water is also very helpful for flushing out the genitourinary system and, to a lesser extent, the liver.
Get Rid Of Sugary Drinks
To improve liver function, get rid of sugary drinks.
What to do:
- Getting rid of sugary sodas, juices with sugar added and energy drinks that are packed with sugar is a foregone conclusion.
- Eliminate diet drinks with artificial sweeteners from your diet as well.
- Use natural sweeteners like raw, cane sugar, honey, stevia and xylitol.
How it works:Fructose is a major contributor to Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and most artificial sweeteners are even worse.