What Do Kidneys Do?
One of the main jobs of the kidneys is to filter the waste out of the blood.
How does the waste get in your blood?
Your blood delivers nutrients to your body. Chemical reactions in the cells of your body break down the nutrients. Some of the waste is the result of these chemical reactions and others is just stuff your body doesn’t need because it already has enough. The waste has to go somewhere; this is where the kidneys come in.
What Else Do Kidneys Do?
Kidneys are always busy. Besides filtering the blood and balancing fluids every second during the day, the kidneys constantly react to hormones that the brain sends them. Kidneys even make some of their own hormones. For example, the kidneys produce a hormone that tells the body to make red blood cells.
What is chronic kidney disease?
5 things you can do to look after your kidneys
A person with kidney disease has progressive loss of function of their kidneys. Kidney disease is sometimes called a ‘silent disease’ because it often doesn’t cause symptoms until the disease has progressed significantly. It’s not uncommon for people to have lost up to 90% of their kidney function before experiencing symptoms of kidney disease.
Keep an eye out for the below signs and symptoms of kidney disease, and if you have any concerns, see your doctor.
Signs of reduced kidney function can include:
Many of these symptoms are quite general or vague, and may point to other illnesses or conditions. It’s important to talk to your GP about how you’re feeling, so they can rule out kidney disease or other issues.
People who smoke are more likely to develop kidney disease and kidney cancer, so quitting now is a great step for your future kidney health. Quitting smoking has benefits for your entire body – find out more about how to quit with your GP
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a risk factor for developing kidney disease, because it can cause damage to the arteries and blood vessels in and around the kidneys. Talk to your GP about testing your blood pressure regularly to make sure it’s at a healthy level.
If you have high blood pressure, your doctor may talk to you about ways to manage it, including:
Some people with high blood pressure will need to take medication to manage their condition.
According to Kidney Health Australia, diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease in Australia. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, speak with your doctor about how to manage your condition and monitor your kidney health.
Drinking water regularly throughout the day helps your kidneys to function properly and stay healthy.
Water is the best choice of fluid to drink throughout the day. It contains no kilojoules, salt or sugar, and is the natural way to hydrate your body. Mineral waters, cordials, fruit concentrates, soft drinks and alcoholic drinks can all contain high levels of salt and sugar, while drinks that contain phosphoric acid (often used in cola drinks and beer) might promote kidney stones. Keep these drinks for special occasions and reach for water instead when you’re thirsty during the day.
Keep in mind that feeling thirsty is the body’s first sign that you’re already dehydrated. Small, frequent drinks of water throughout the day will keep you hydrated. Remember to drink more water if you’re in a hot climate, exercising, breastfeeding or pregnant.
To get involved follow the link below