It is high time to spread awareness and educate people about the alarming rise in the numbers of those suffering from kidney disease every year and the challenges faced by them. The burden of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) in India cannot be estimated correctly, but it is estimated that approximately 800 per million population are affected by Chronic Kidney Disease. Diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of kidney disease. Both diseases are related to your genetics and lifestyle. Therefore the emphasis should always be on keeping them in check. Doctors recommend a blend of medicines and exercise along with the intake of healthy food to keep such lifestyle diseases under control. Moreover, it is essential to ensure that blood pressure is not secondary to kidney disease. Young individuals, who have developed high BP, need to be specially screened for underlying kidney diseases.
How to keep your kidneys healthy!
A very common phenomenon in people diagnosed with CKD is depression, hence doctors are now concentrating on a more holistic approach when dealing with these patients, which involves dietary changes, avoiding over-the-top usage of pain killers, quitting smoking, and immediately consulting nephrologists once a patient is diagnosed with diabetes, high BP, or any form of CKD. Certain kidney diseases can be controlled and treated easily, hence there is a greater need to quickly diagnose the disease and begin treatment as soon as possible.
Preventive strategies play a crucial role in dealing with CKD. Since treating a CKD patient is more expensive than its prevention, screening strategies can help reduce the financial burden on the patients and society as a whole.
Measures to take care of Chronic Kidney Disease:
- Regular health check-ups are a must for screening of CKD during the early phase.
- Regular exercise improves physical well-being and is also a stress buster.
- Periodic follow up with the doctor can help patients discuss strategies to control the disease and formulate a plan to deal with the ailment.
- Dietary counselling can help assess health needs and determine the type of diet and lifestyle changes required to achieve health goals.
- Kidney diseases have a variable presentation, hence ask your doctor for your tailor-made therapy.
- Beware of the seven S of this disease and keep the following in check – Sugar, Salt, Stress, Smoking, Sedentary lifestyle, Spirits i.e., alcohol and Sleep (the lack of it).
- Keep conditions leading to kidney damage such as high BP and diabetes in check.
- Consult your doctor to guide you about kidney health and give you a regular schedule for testing as early-stage CKD may not show symptoms.
- Approach your doctor immediately for urinary tract infections, if left untreated they can damage kidneys.
- Eat healthy and opt for foods beneficial for overall health like fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains and a low-fat diet.
- Reduce the intake of salt and sugar.
- Exercise at least 20 minutes per day. Ask your doctor for advice on the type and level of exercise suitable for you.
- Quit smoking and use of tobacco products.
- Minimise your intake of alcohol and avoid it altogether if possible.
- Get 8 hours of sleep every night.
- Manage your stress and anxiety levels with activities such as yoga, breathing exercises etc.