March is National Kidney Month and with spring just around the corner, what better time to think about your health? The kidneys play a vital role in the human body. If chronic kidney disease isn’t spotted early enough, it can lead to total kidney failure. We’ve put together five ways to look after your kidneys.
Every part of your body needs water for it to function properly, especially the kidneys. Around 60-70% of your body weight is made up of water. Water helps your kidneys remove waste from your blood in the form of urine.
If we’re not drinking enough water, waste and acid in the body clog up the kidneys, contributing to kidney stones and urinary tract infections.
Keeping active helps reduce your blood pressure and improves your heart health which are both important factors in preventing kidney disease.
Kidney disease increases your chances of developing heart disease too. Aim for around 30 minutes of exercise every day.
High blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes are all associated with kidney disease. Salt and processed meats are kidney-damaging foods, make sure your diet is low in sodium and rich in fruit, vegetables and whole grains.
Smoking damages the blood vessels in the body and this affects the blood flow to the kidneys, causing damage over time and eventually, develops into kidney disease.
Watch out for over the counter medicines
Ibuprofen is readily available over the counter at pharmacies and on the shelves at supermarkets, but regularly taking this medication could be damaging your kidneys. If you are free of any kidney problems and you take anti-inflammatory drugs occasionally, you should be okay.
However, if you regularly take ibuprofen for headaches, speak to your GP to see what other medication is available and safe to take on a regular basis.
Did you know, if you take a health insurance policy out with us, we can cover up to two pre-existing conditions including hypertension and diabetes! Plus we’ll give you access to our complimentary Health and Wellbeing service, available 24/7. Take a look at our website here and get your free quote to see how little Private Health Insurance could cost you!