5 Smart Ways to Boost Your Kidney Health

5 Smart Ways to Boost Your Kidney Health

Did you know that over 1 in 10 Americans age 20 and older show signs of kidney disease? This problem occurs when your kidneys no longer get rid of waste from your system properly until they stop working entirely. But that’s not the only problem that puts your kidneys at risk — they’re also prone to infection, stones, and even cancer.

But there’s good news. There are ways you can boost your kidney health, and they’re easier to adopt than you think!

Our team at Urology Associates of Southeastern North Carolina caters to male and female patients of all ages, from teenagers to seniors. If you want to protect your kidneys at every stage in life, we recommend taking these steps.

1. Drink plenty of fluids

Perhaps the smartest (and easiest) way to boost your kidney health and overall wellness revolves around one simple thing: drinking enough water. This essential fluid makes up approximately 60% of the body and plays a vital role in many of its functions and processes, including flushing sodium and toxins from your kidneys.

There are no hard-and-fast rules to how much water you should drink each day, but 6-8 glasses is a good place to start. However, if you exercise a lot, live in a hot climate, or have a history of kidney stones, you could need more water to stay properly hydrated.

2. Exercise

We know what you’re thinking — exercise for your kidneys?

Believe it or not, regular exercise benefits your kidneys in several ways. First, it lowers your chances of kidney disease. Plus, it lowers your blood pressure and improves your heart health, both crucial risk factors for avoiding kidney damage.

And don’t worry! You don’t have to prepare for a marathon to see the benefits. Instead, choose activities you enjoy that keep you busy and having fun, like dancing, walking, biking, and cycling. Just make sure to do them regularly so you can get results.

3. Keep an eye on your numbers

Several things can put your kidneys at risk, from high blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol to an increasing waistline. However, if you can keep these numbers in check, you can protect your kidneys and overall health.

Working closely with your primary care physician can help identify health issues like diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. They can also alert you to potential weight issues and how they can affect your health. 

Your doctor can also check your kidney function if you have a higher risk of developing kidney issues. This screening enables them to look for signs of damage and prevent more problems in the future.

Once you know all of your numbers, your doctor can help you take the proper steps to improve them through diet, exercise, weight loss, lifestyle changes, and, sometimes, medication. 

4. Limit your over-the-counter pills and supplements

If you don’t need a prescription, it’s safe to take, right? Not necessarily. 

While taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like naproxen and ibuprofen, can help with headaches and pain, regular use can increase your chances of kidney damage. But that’s not all. Certain vitamin and herbal supplements or extracts can also put your kidneys at risk. 

Play it safe for your kidneys and overall health. Talk to your doctor about the over-the-counter items you take on a regular basis so they can offer personalized guidance to avoid any complications.

5. Quit smoking — and vaping

Need another reason to quit? Do it for your kidneys.

Smoking and vaping contain addictive chemicals that are hard on the body, especially tobacco which damages blood vessels and impacts blood flow to the kidneys. Without a healthy blood supply, your kidneys can’t function properly. Smoking also increases your chances of high blood pressure, a condition that leaves you susceptible to kidney damage.

Still need more motivation? Smoking also significantly increases your risk of kidney cancer.

If you have concerns about your kidney health, don’t wait to see a specialist. Contact Urology Associates of Southeastern North Carolina to schedule a consultation at our Wilmington or Southport, North Carolina location today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Understanding the Effects of Low Testosterone

Have you noticed physical changes, like weight gain and loss of muscle mass? Do you have trouble concentrating or struggle with irritability? If this sounds familiar, it could be low testosterone — a hormone that affects more than your sex drive.

5 Common Causes of Male Infertility

Facing fertility issues can be overwhelming and frustrating, but there’s hope. These challenges are common, and they can occur for several reasons. Fortunately, there are several safe and effective solutions for some of the most common causes.

How Many Times Should I Urinate Each Day?

There aren’t any hard and fast rules around how many times you should urinate on a daily basis. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t numbers to use as a guide. Take a moment to learn more about healthy urination.

What Blood in Your Urine Could Mean

Seemingly nothing can be more alarming than seeing blood in your urine. Just because it’s scary, however, doesn’t mean it’s a life-threatening problem. If you’ve seen blood in your urine, here’s what could be to blame and why you shouldn’t ignore it.

The Link Between Stress and Erectile Dysfunction

Struggling to achieve or maintain an erection may be a common issue, but it can develop from many causes. If you’ve been feeling stressed lately and having problems with your erections, it might not be a coincidence. Take a moment to learn more.

Tips for Getting Through a Kidney Stone

Few things compare with the pain and discomfort of kidney stones, making it important to find relief as soon as possible. If you have a kidney stone, here’s what you need to know to get through the ordeal.