Your probably don’t spend a ton of time thinking about ways to keep your kidneys healthy, but you should. Your kidneys work hard to filter waste from your body, so taking good care of them is an important part of your routine. Fortunately, it doesn’t require a ton of effort or time, so you can reap the benefits of these ways to keep your kidneys healthy without having to change your whole life.
1. Monitor Your Blood Pressure
Your kidneys produce renin, which is an enzyme that helps control your blood pressure. If your numbers suddenly start to look wacky, it could be an indication that your kidneys aren’t working properly. Use the cuffs at your drugstore to check yours regularly, then contact your doctor if you’re worried. He can monitor your blood pressure for you and give you treatment methods if yours needs work. This is one of the best ways to keep your kidneys healthy.
2. Reduce Salt Intake
Too much salt causes a myriad of problems for your body. It can affect your kidneys, so it pays to cut back on your sodium intake. Eat fewer fast foods and processed foods, both of which are usually chock full of salt. Read labels carefully to ensure that the amount of salt your foods contain isn’t too high. The average American needs only 1,500 milligrams of salt per day. That might sound like a lot, but an order of fast food fries can get you halfway there, easily.
3. Eat Healthy Foods
Your body relies on a variety of healthy foods to keep it functioning as it should. Your kidneys are no exception. They need healthy foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and low-fat dairy to keep them working as they should. That means a well-balanced diet is one simple way to keep your kidneys healthy. Take the time to revamp your eating habits and your kidneys will thank you for a lifetime.
4. Don’t Smoke
No doubt you’ve heard many of the reasons why smoking is bad for your health. Well, here’s another one to add to the list. Smoking has a detrimental impact on the health of your kidneys, so it’s really important that you quit the cigarettes right away. If you need help, talk to your doctor about medications or lifestyle changes that can help you.
Exercise protects your health in many ways. It can also promote healthy kidneys, so you really need to add 30 minutes of physical activity to your routine each day. The good news is that you don’t have to do it all at once. Just 10 minutes a few times per day is just as beneficial. Walking, swimming or biking are great options.
6. Don’t Overload on Protein
While this isn’t an entirely common problem, too much protein can be bad for your kidneys, especially if you’re at risk of kidney issues. Balance your intake each day to keep your kidneys healthy and humming along nicely. Foods that contain protein include meat, beans, dairy foods and eggs. You need some protein, so don’t give it up entirely; just watch how much you take in each day.
7. Limit over-the-Counter Painkillers
The occasional dose isn’t a big deal, but if you have kidney problems or you are at risk of them, it pays to avoid over-the-counter pain medications. All of these products can damage your kidneys if you use them on a regular basis. Talk to your doctor about alternatives that can relive pain without compromising the health of your kidneys.
Are you motivated to keep your kidneys healthy? I like to think mine are working exactly like they should. Are these steps doable for you?