Habits and Foods that are Actually Damaging the Kidneys
26. Not exercising enough. The National Kidney Foundation believes that exercise is critical for kidney function. Exercise lowers blood pressure, cholesterol, and body weight. It aids… Trista -
October 28, 2020
The National Kidney Foundation believes that exercise is critical for kidney function. Exercise lowers blood pressure, cholesterol, and body weight. It aids with sleeping and muscle function. All of these factors help the kidneys to function normally. Exercise helps the body to process nutrients and fluids. These are the key jobs the kidneys perform. It is essential for people who are obese to exercise. Any weight they lose reduces their risk of kidney disease, high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. Those with excess salt in their diet can benefit from exercise, and so can their kidneys. Salt causes raised blood pressure and affected how the kidneys function. The sweat that exercise produces is another way for the body to secrete salt.
That can alleviate the kidneys as they don’t need to process all that salt. A recent study into the incidences of kidney stones came up with interesting findings related to exercise. The study was conducted by the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle and was funded by the Women’s Health Initiative. Eighty-five thousand women aged 50 and over, were monitored. Aspects of their diets, body mass index and exercise habits were scrutinized. After eight years, there was a link established between exercise and a lowered incidence of kidney stones. Researchers said that the intensity of the movement didn’t matter as much as the volume. It seems that any activity is better than none. People who exercise tend to make healthier food and lifestyle choices. All of these can be beneficial to the kidneys as well.
Sleep is vital for the whole body. It gives a chance for the organs, muscles, and tissue a chance to regenerate and recharge. The kidneys are no different. They use the âdowntime’ while sleeping to process excess fluids and rest before the next day’s activities. The circadian clock is the body’s biorhythm pattern that distinguishes between sleep and wakefulness. The kidney is programmed to function differently during the night as the demands on it are different. It seems that there is a correlation between declining kidney function and a lack of sleep in women. A study was conducted by researchers at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Sleep-deprived women were shown to experience a more rapid decline in kidney function.
Those who got 5 hours’ sleep or less a night had a 65% higher risk of rapid kidney function decline. That was in comparison with women who were getting 7-8 hours of sleep a night. What concerns academics is that, over the last 20 years, the average amount of sleep people get has decreased. About 20 years ago, an average night’s sleep consisted of 8 hours. In more recent years, it’s declined to 6.5 hours. Moreover, it’s expected to decrease even further. At this stage, experts recommend that adults get at least 7 hours of sleep a night. The study did not prove that sleeping longer improves kidney function. Nor did it establish whether changing your sleeping pattern to include more rest would reverse kidney damage.
The feeling is familiar. You find yourself needing to go to the toilet but unable to. You don’t like using a public restroom at the mall. So, you resolve to hold it in until you get home. Alternatively, you have to attend to a customer and can’t go to the toilet right then. Many people hold in their urge to urinate until the very last moment before making a mad dash for the bathroom. They do it for a variety of reasons. Some believe that it strengthens the bladder muscles. Others believe it helps them to put mind over matter. Whatever their justification might be, the ugly truth is that holding it in is bad for your kidneys. It can damage them over the long-term.
When the kidneys produce urine, they do so to expel and excrete toxins and other by-products from the body. Excess salt and other harmful substances need to be removed from the body as waste. When you ignore that âcall of nature,’ you do so at the peril of your kidneys. The toxins your kidneys were trying to flush may remain behind in the body when you finally go to the toilet. That can cause infection and other damage to the kidneys. It gets so bad that the urine in the bladder can back up into your kidneys in some cases. It’s advisable to urinate as soon as your bladder tells you it’s time to go.
23. Not monitoring your blood pressure can have more consequences than you realize.
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is known as the âsilent killer.’ Many people don’t find out they have it until it’s too late. Then the damage is already done, and it’s hard to reverse. When you have high blood pressure, your arteries and veins are pumping the blood in high volumes. Alternatively, that has used a spermicide recently places pressure on the walls of the blood vessels. The blood vessels become damaged, sometimes permanently. The blood vessels that lead to and from your kidneys may become damaged by high blood pressure. The kidney system is supplied with blood by an extensive network composed of many blood vessels. When high blood pressure damages these vessels, they cannot receive the oxygen and nutrients they need to filter the toxins from fluids in the body. Your kidneys also produce a hormone called aldosterone.
This hormone helps to regulate your blood pressure. When your kidneys become damaged by high blood pressure, they cannot produce enough of this vital hormone. It keeps perpetuating, with the kidneys becoming more damaged at each stage. Low blood pressure, or hypotension, results in an inadequate flow of blood to the organs. This undersupply of blood also affects the nutrients and oxygen that the kidneys need to function well. The result is often a heart attack, kidney failure, or a stroke. Your blood pressure, whether high or low, is essential. You must have your blood pressure tested at least once a year, if not more. If you have a family history of blood pressure problems, take precautions, and track your blood pressure. Knowing that you have a blood pressure problem allows you to treat it before it can do severe damage to your organs.
Canned foods, such as soups, vegetables, and beans, are often purchased because of their low cost and convenience. However, most canned foods contain high amounts of sodium, as salt is added as a preservative to increase its shelf life. Due to the amount of sodium found in canned goods, it’s often recommended that people with kidney disease avoid or limit their consumption. What’s even more worrisome is that, according to a study published in the Journal Kidney International, the lining inside food cans might increase the risk of kidney and cardiovascular disease at the same time.
The study compared the levels of BPA (Bisphenol A), which is used to make the epoxy linings inside the cans, with the protein albumin levels. Too much albumin can indicate kidney problems and cardiovascular disease. The study concluded that a high-level concentration of BPA in the urine is also connected with the albumin. Choosing lower-sodium varieties or those labeled “no salt added” is typically best. Additionally, draining and rinsing canned foods, such as canned beans and tuna, can decrease the sodium content by 33-80%, depending on the product.
A study published in the American Journal of Kidney Diseases found that sitting for prolonged periods daily can increase the chances of diabetes, heart attacks, and kidney failure, especially in women. The women in the study who spent less than 3 hours a day sitting were 30% less likely to have kidney disease in the future than women who spend eight or more hours sitting in a chair, no matter if the person is overweight or obese. It can also affect men, but with a lower risk, so it is still recommended for everyone to be more active.
It was also found that walking for 30 minutes every day can reduce the risks of kidney diseases, but only in men. Researcher Thomas Yates, MD, a senior lecturer on physical activity, sedentary behavior, and health at the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom, said, “It may be more important for women to avoid sitting for long periods in the first place. It is difficult not to be sitting, especially when working in an office, but it’s good to get up that office chair, walk to the bathroom or kitchen for a few minutes to keep the blood flowing and move around.
Juicing can be seen as a double edge sword; it’s an easy way to help you get the vitamins and nutrients that you need conveniently, keep you hydrated, allow the kidneys to work in optimal conditions, and has many antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and bloating. However, by replacing fresh fruits and veggies with juicing, there are a few things that might not help you keep a balanced and healthy diet, especially if you’re trying to replace a meal with a bottle of juice, and in the end, it can put your kidney in jeopardy.
Eliminating the pulp during the extraction of the juice means that the fiber of the fruit is gone. Fiber is essential to keep your system working and help you not get constipated. Plus, since fruit juice is a more concentrated version of the fruit, there are higher levels of natural sugars in it or carbohydrates, which don’t sit well with high blood sugar people. Certain nutrients like potassium will be higher, especially in fruit blends and green vegetables like kale and spinach. Having too much vitamin K can increase blood clots, especially in dialysis patients.
Pregnancy can be a wonderful and magical moment in any women’s life. For nine months, your body is creating life, and it’s crucial to take care of your body in this process. One of the things that might happen during this time is the condition called preeclampsia. Formerly known as Toxemia, preeclampsia is when the pregnant woman has high blood pressure, which can occur as early as 20 weeks into the pregnancy. Some other symptoms are swollen legs, feet, and hands, weight gain because of retaining bodily fluids, dizziness, peeing less than usual and blurry vision.
There can be various causes for preeclampsia to happen, if a woman’s placenta is not working the way it should, or if the woman has very poor nutrition or obesity. Women with kidney diseases have a higher risk for this to happen, so it is imperative to have a healthy balanced diet before and during the pregnancy, exercise often, and no smoking. It is always best to regularly visit your doctor and watch for any symptoms since this can complicate the pregnancy and cause more damage to your kidneys.
Many people love a good quick meal from a fast-food restaurant when you’re not in the mood for cooking or with a craving for something from a vending machine. Nevertheless, the reality is that processed food can make things worse, especially if you have any kidney disease. Processed food has high sodium and phosphorous volume that will damage your kidney and bones, heart, and even give you type 2 diabetes. A lead study at the Anglia Ruskin University in Britain discovered that a diet high in fat and sodium like fast food could cause changes similar to a type 2 diabetic for a healthy person.
Dr. Anshul Jai Bharat, A Nutritionist from Delhi, says, “Junk food has too much-processed sugar, so when it goes to your system, it leads to hormonal imbalance and also your blood profile changes. High consumption of these empty calories can cause obesity and diabetes- diseases that directly impact your kidneys’ functioning. You can treat yourself to your favorite dessert or fast food burger sometimes as long as it does not replace your daily balanced diet” So you can enjoy that pizza you’ve been craving, but always remember to compliment it with healthy food to keep you at bay.
For someone with any kidney disease is a bit complicated to find the right thing to eat and to have a balanced diet, and choosing what type of bread is suitable for you is no exception. Even if whole wheat bread sounds like the right choice because of the high fiber content, it also has a few ingredients that can damage your system, and it’s necessary to be cautious about it. Some patients are more tolerant than others, so it’s always good to ask your doctor if you can enjoy whole wheat bread.
It is so dangerous because it has high potassium and phosphorous content, all depending on how much bran the bread has. Just one ounce or 30 grams of whole wheat bread has about 57mg of phosphorus and 69mg of potassium. In comparison, the same amount of white bread only has 28mg of phosphorus and potassium. It is also good noting that all bread, no matter if they are white or whole wheat bread, has a high sodium content, so it’s always essential to choose a low sodium bread before making your favorite sandwich.
Rice is a daily food in many households around the world and a favorite in a lot of countries and cultures. Nevertheless, for someone with kidney damage, it is better to be safe than sorry choosing which type of rice is good for you and what alternatives they are in the market. Brown rice is considered a healthy alternative to white rice for being less processed, and it contains a lot of fiber, B vitamins, oils, and necessary minerals. However, it also has a few things that might affect anyone who has kidney damage, so be on the lookout.
Just one cup of brown rice has 150 mg of phosphorus and potassium, while white rice only has 69mg of phosphorus and 54 mg of potassium, and as we said before, those two can be a problem with kidney damage. It can be eaten if you are on a strict renal diet, but it needs to be monitored and controlled by lowering phosphorus intake and potassium in other foods. There are also alternatives like pearled barley, bulgur, couscous, and buckwheat, which are very nutritious and with less phosphorus and potassium than brown rice.
Green salads can be a bit boring and dull without a good dressing on them to give it a nice twist to the taste of the greens, especially for picky eaters. Nevertheless, salad dressings like ranch have many ingredients that can be unhealthy, not only for people with kidney damage but also for anyone who wants to carry a low-fat, healthy diet. Ranch dressing has a high content of dairies like eggs and buttermilk, which helps with the creaminess, and phosphorus helps give it a tangy taste that is cheaper than lemons, and it helps it have a long shelf life than natural ingredients.
According to the US Department of Agriculture’s Nutrient Database, one serving of regular store-bought ranch dressing has 55mg of phosphorus, 19mg of potassium, and 270mg of sodium, which makes it ridiculously high for such a small dosage. Even if the phosphorus seems relatively low, it is known that commercially made dressings use additives that are easier for the body to be absorbed in the gut than occurring phosphorus. There are better and safer dressings for renal patients like a tangy Dijon, a raspberry vinaigrette, or honey ginger dressing to keep your salads tasting good and is suitable for you.
If you live in a low-temperature area, especially in winter, there is a small risk of having difficulty finding a warm place to keep you safe. Cold freezing temperatures can be a problem, especially for people with other conditions. However, what’s more dangerous in this climate is suffering from Hypothermia. This emergency condition happens when your body loses heat faster than it can produce, causing very low body temperature. Our average body temperature is around 98.3 F or 37C; Hypothermia occurs when your body temperature drops below 95 F or 35 C, putting you in a life or death situation.
When your body temperature drops too low, your organs like your kidney, heart, and nervous system can’t work correctly, and if it’s left that way for too long, your body will slowly start to shut down, which can lead to death. There are many symptoms to know if Hypothermia is happening, like slurred speech, shivering, drowsiness, confusion, and memory loss. It is essential to find a way to get heat, like standing in front of a fireplace, wearing warm winter clothes, and if your clothes are wet, they need to be removed immediately and replace with dry ones.
It’s always good to have a snack between meals, especially when you’re trying to maintain a healthy diet. Moreover, sometimes, what your body craves are salty chips like pretzels, potato chips, or crackers. The problem with these is that some of them have a ridiculously amount of sodium and, in the case of potato chips, potassium, which in excess can damage your kidneys and even more if you’re a renal patient. It is always good to look for better alternatives that are low in sodium and better for you, and it’s a plus if they are also delicious.
One of the things that you also need to be aware of is calorie intake, but thankfully many snacks can ease your cravings and also keep your focus on the road to a healthy diet. It is always recommended eating fruits or veggies like carrot sticks, blueberries, and cherries, but if you’re looking for something more savory, a croissant, bagels, animal crackers, or rice cakes are a great option. Plus, there is always a selection of low sodium chips and crackers that will keep you satisfied and happy. So next time you go to the snack section at the grocery store, keep an eye on the nutrition facts!
As we talked about before, it is always important to keep an eye on some drugs that can do more harm than good, but what about illegal substances? Your body goes through a lot when you use drugs. Most of the metabolism occurs in the liver, but the elimination of waste happens in the kidneys, and when they’re not functioning as they should be, there are even more dangers that should be avoided. Individuals who develop a tolerance of some substances tend to increase the number of drugs they use, and over time, the toxicity and kidney functions decline.
For instance, cocaine, a central nervous system stimulant, has a high risk of kidney functioning. One-third of the people admitted to a hospital with cocaine-related issues develop acute kidney failure and can lead to renal infarctions. Opiates like heroin can produce fungal and bacterial infections if used intravenously, leading to kidney inflammation. An overdose with opiates can also lead to rhabdomyolysis, which can amplify the risks of kidney damage. The best to do is to stay away from these illegal substances and get help if you think you have a problem with them.
For most things in life, you always need a balance of how much your body can hold. Under-exercising can be harmful over time, but the same can be said to overdo your daily exercise routine. There are many things that most people do not know about overworking that can have permanent damage to your kidneys. A condition called rhabdomyolysis, also knowns as rhabdo, is considered rare, with only 22 out of 100,000 people can have it, but it is a dangerous one. It is better to be cautious when doing physical activities for long periods.
Rhabdo is a syndrome that involves muscle tissue breakdown and damage. When muscles are injured, a muscle enzyme is released in the bloodstream and can cause kidney failure in 40% of the cases, and it can harm the kidney’s ability to remove waste and urine. Other things can cause rhabdo, like dehydration, statins, drug use, and extreme temperatures. Maureen Brogan, MD, an associate professor of medicine at New York Medical College in Valhalla, NY, warns about cycling classes being a “health concern” for pushing users into having a rhabdo breakdown. So always remember to listen to your body and know your limits.
10. An untreated strep throat can complicate things.
Strep throat is a bacterial infection that can make your throat feel very sore, making it very painful to swallow, causes fever, headaches, rashes, and wellness of your lymph nodes. It is most common in small children, but mostly everyone can get it. If you get strep throat, it is crucial to have this infection treated by a doctor right away. If left untreated, it can lead to more serious conditions, especially on your kidneys. It sounds crazy to think that a painful sore throat can cause a more complicated infection, but here we explain why it’s important to check for the signs.
The strep bacteria can also spread in other parts like the middle ear, tonsils, and sinuses. However, the most disturbing thing about not treating it is that it can cause scarlet fever, which is a rheumatic fever that is an inflammatory condition. It can affect various organs like the heart, joints, nervous system, and skin; it also causes post-streptococcal reactive arthritis and inflammation of the kidney called post-streptococcal glomerulonephritis. Always remember to wash your hands, cover your mouth when you sneeze and cough, and don’t share personal items like eating utensils to protect yourself from getting strep throat.
It’s great to take care of yourself by taking supplements that can help achieve your health goals. However, it is imperative to clarify that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has no control or regulation in doses, content, or pureness of herbal supplements. It is always important to ask your doctor if they recommend taking any herbal supplements. That is especially so if you are taking any other medications that might conflict and cause any damage. For a person with any kidney disease, taking any herbal supplements can be very dangerous, especially if it has any ingredients that your body can’t clear, which can cause a build-up.
If you have a kidney transplant, it can be hazardous to take supplements like St. Johns Wort, ginkgo, garlic, ginseng, echinacea, ginger, and blue cohosh, it might react with your medicines and it can put you in danger of losing your kidney. People with bleeding disorders, pregnant women, or lactating are also at risk. Some supplements like buchu leaf, Indian Sorrel, onion, and horseradish root are very high on phosphorus, so it’s something that should be on the lookout. Always ask a professional health provider before trying any supplements.
With only 10% of the population living or visiting mountainous areas, there’s a smaller chance of this happening to many people, especially those with renal conditions. Nevertheless, it is still possible that if you live or visit a high altitude area, your kidneys may present some problems. A study published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology shows a concern that “high altitude may accelerate the progression of chronic kidney disease”. Since oxygen levels in mountainous areas are different from being at sea level, some factors can have some effects on your body and organs.
Since the kidney is marginally oxygenated when being on sea level when put in the higher ground, there is a real concern that it may increase renal hypoxia and hypoxia-associated renal injury and might accelerate the progression. It is being investigated that the changes in ventilation, cardiac output, sympathetic nervous activity, and erythropoiesis are the causes for this to happen. In other words, the changes your body has while being at high altitude and the fluctuation of oxygen can affect how your kidney works, to the point of changing how it process the sodium excretion and the filtering of your blood. Next time you travel to the rocky mountains, remember to ask your doctor to make sure you are ready.
7. Women can face a higher risk of kidney infection during sex.
That is something that you might not learn in school. Research published in the Annals of Internal medicine shows that women younger than 50 years old who take a new partner and have intercourse more than three times per week have a higher risk of kidney infections. That is especially so for those that have diabetes, urinary incontinence, or a history of urinary tract infection. Also, it is worse for those who used a spermicide recently. It is widespread to get kidney infections, with a quarter of Americans getting it every year, so this study tries to warn women to be careful with the signs.
For this study, they interviewed 240 women from 18 to 49 years old with Kidney infections and members of a group of health Cooperatives. Most of the questions were about their sexual behavior, diabetes, urinary tract infections, and urinary incontinence, and they compared the data with 500 healthy women with no history of kidney infections. They found that women with kidney infections were four times more likely to have a urinary tract infection recently. Having intercourse more than three times per week increased the chances even more. The same can be said about using a spermicide. No matter what, always remember to have a healthy diet to make those chances lower.
Skincare is essential to keep your skin hydrated and radiant every day. Drinking lo water can help your skin but using face creams will help with elasticity and hold those wrinkles from showing up. However, sometimes products can have ingredients that might harm your body’s skin deep, and you might notice it too late. These products are being investigated, and most of them taken out of the market, but they are still chances that these might be in your beauty routine. The Food and Drug Administration is searching for these products, and here’s what they found.
The FDA found anti-aging creams, soaps, lotions, and skin lighters made in foreign countries and sold in the United States for Latino, Asian, and Middle Eastern neighborhoods, to have a highly toxic substance, mercury. Most are sold online and have been found in at least 7 States. Mercury can cause brain damage and Kidney failure, and just having a brief contact can cause lung damage, increase blood pressure, and skin irritations. So if you see a product with mercurous chloride, calomel, mercuric, or mercury listed, stop using the product immediately.
There’s nothing more refreshing than a nice glass of cold iced tea in the hot days of summer. However, did you know that drinking too much can cause serious problems to your kidney? Well, this 56-year-old man learns it the hard way when he was brought to the hospital with kidney failure. The man admitted to drinking at least 16 glasses of iced tea every day. Talk about thirst! Doctors concluded this was the cause of the failure, and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock decided to research the reason behind it.
They found that black tea is a source of oxalate, and high intakes can produce calcium oxalate kidney stones. Before this case, doctors couldn’t link the tea with Kidney failure. It was until they did a biopsy of the kidney that they discovered how much damage it can do. It is still being investigated, but it is highly believed that oxalate-containing foods can cause kidney stones, and if it’s not treated, it can worsen. Oxalate can be found in various food and drinks like dark beer, milk, instant coffee, high fiber cereal dry beans, and some fruits like blueberries.
What better way to show your rebel side than to ink your skin with great art and sometimes questionable tats that will likely haunt your dreams? Well, sometimes getting a tattoo can be dangerous for your kidney too, so before taking the big step of going to your tattoo appointment, here we show you what the risks involved in this century-old tradition are. The University of British Columbia found that some inks used in modern tattoo parlors have toxins that can enter your circulatory system and damage your kidney, lymph node, and lung damage in some patients.
The Food and Drug Administration hasn’t approved or researched some inks used like UV light-activated or glow in the Dark, so not much is known of the damage it might cause in the long run. It is also essential to understand that some people might be allergic to some ingredients that can cause dermatitis, which is skin irritation. According to the National Center for Toxicological research, some of the dyes used in tattoos are also suitable for printers and automobile paint. So next time you go to get the tattoo that you dreamt of, remember to check what type of ink might be safe for you.
Keto Diet is the new trend in dietary lifestyles that are sweeping the nation. If you’ve been living under a rock, Keto Diet is a low carb, high-fat diet commonly used to lose weight fast. Lowering the carb intake can lead to Ketosis, a metabolic state where your body primarily relies on fat for energy instead of carbohydrates. Even if it’s trendy right now, it is not for everyone, especially if you have any renal problems that might jeopardize your health, so it is vital to know the risks before diving into it.
Since high-fat foods like cheese, eggs, and meat do not have any carbs, it is a staple for the Keto diet, but that also means that you might be at a higher risk of having Kidney Stones. When you have a higher intake of animal foods, your blood and urine can turn more acidic. You’ll have higher chances to excrete calcium in your urine and reduce the amount of citrate released in your urine, lead to developing kidney stones. Anyone with a Chronic Kidney Disease (CDK) need to stay away from Keto because this might weaken your kidney and lead to acidosis.
Going Vegan is a big step for many people. Leaving behind all animal products can be a challenge, but it can be achieved with a well-regulated balanced diet. That can worsen your condition with kidney problems, especially if you’re unsure what things you can eat. With your eating options being smaller, this means you have to depend on fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and healthy oils to keep your body running. Now that you decided to avoid that meat lover’s pizza, it’s time to learn what to avoid and which ones to try out.
First of all, it is always essential to consult a dietitian before attempting any diet. They will tell you what options are right for you and find a balance to help you stay in optimal health. However, if you want to try the green-way, always remember to avoid high sodium, potassium, and phosphorous food and veggies since that will affect your kidney. It is better to include at least some protein-rich animal products combined with veggies high in fiber to keep it balanced. There are other diets like the DASH Diet, which is mostly recommended for people with high blood pressure and that consist of avoiding high fat, cholesterol, and trans fat
There’s nothing more relaxing after a long day at work to relax in the bathtub with a cup of wine, relaxing music, and your favorite essential oils burning away and filling the air with calmness. These popular oils can help you relieve stress, pains and relax you. Nevertheless, according to scientists, essential oils might be doing more harm than good. What exactly are these types of aromatic oils used in baths, spas for massages, and burns have that can go as far as damaging your kidneys? Well, Scientists from Chia-Nan University of Pharmacy and Science in Taiwan are here with the results.
Researchers found that these oils used for relaxation have a chemical called volatile organic compounds that, when mixed with the air, creates a secondary organic aerosol that can irritate the eyes, nose, and throat and can cause nausea, headaches, and liver and kidney damage. The oils that generated the highest number of aerosols were eucalyptus, lemon, tea tree, lavender, and peppermint. Also, it all depends on the ventilation within the space where the oils are being used. Next time you go to a spa, check out how ventilated the area is, the types of oils used, and be safe from those volatile organic compounds.