Kidney disease is a non-communicable disease (NCD) and currently affects around 850 million people worldwide. Its affect about 1 in 10 adults and accounts for millions of premature deaths worldwide. The global burden of CKD is increasing, and is projected to become the 5th most common cause of years of life lost globally by 2040. Crucially, kidney disease can be prevented and progression to end-stage kidney disease can be delayed with appropriate access to basic diagnostics and early treatment.
Kidneys play an important role in filtering your blood, removing wastes and extra water to make urine. They remove wastes and extra fluid from the body. Apart from that, they also remove acid that is produced by the cells of the body and maintain a healthy balance of water, salts, and minerals like sodium, calcium, phosphorus and potassium.
It’s also very important to produce hormones that keep your bone strong, control your blood pressure and red blood cells synthesis. They need a lot of energy to do the things that they do. Simple steps can keep them healthy for the majority of us. Therefore, keeping your kidneys healthy can be the result of living a healthy lifestyle.
What are the signs and symptoms of kidney disease?
The only way to know for sure if you have kidney disease is to get tested but there are few possible signs that you might have kidney disease which are:
- More tired, have less energy or are having trouble concentrating
- Having trouble sleeping
- Having dry and itching skin
- Frequent urination
- Having blood in your urine
- Foamy urine
- Persistent puffiness around your eyes
- Swollen ankle and feet’s
- Sudden decrease in appetite
- Frequent muscle cramping
Can kidney disease reverse?
They are two types of kidney disease which are acute kidney injury (AKI) and chronic kidney failure (CKD). AKI is a sudden loss of kidney function and it’s usually reversible. However, CKD is a gradual loss of kidney function. It gets worse over time and isn’t reversible but we can slow down its progression.
How to slow down the progression of chronic kidney disease?
Some treatment strategies to slow progression are:
a) Nutrition intervention
- Limit sodium/salt intake to 2300mg in a day
- Provide adequate, not excessive protein intake which may help reduce albuminuria (recommended intake of 0.8 g/kg body weight/day)
- Be careful with potassium and phosphorus intake
b) Lifestyle intervention
- Smoking cessation
- Physically active (at least 20 - 30 minutes/day)
c) Medical management
- Blood sugar control
- Blood pressure control
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