Keeping Your Kidneys Healthy
Last updated: April 2023
One of the hardest parts about having diabetes is that it can affect every part of your body, usually, without warning. Adding to the devastation, most of the destruction to your body is irreversible. On top of being irreversible, it can also be a contributing factor to an early death. As we know, diabetes can be controlled, but not cured, so you must be vigilant in keeping yourself as healthy as possible. One of the systems in your body that diabetes can affect and cause lots of long-term complications is your kidneys.1
The risks of kidney complications
Without proper precautions, you could face loss of kidney function, complete kidney failure, need for a transplant, and even death.1 If you haven’t known anyone that needs dialysis or has had a kidney transplant, do some research on it.
Promoting kidney health with type 2 diabetes
There are ways to help avoid needing to go through the struggle kidney failure can cause.
Blood sugar control
The first way is to keep your blood sugar under control.1 This means meeting your A1c goals and keeping your daily blood sugar readings as low as you can while still being safe. If you are not in your target range, you will need to step up your game. Modify or change your diet to help meet your goals. You may need to add more exercise to your daily routine. For many people, adding a short walk after a meal can help lower your blood sugar at least a little bit, which could make a huge difference in the end. These two little modifications may be all you need to bring your blood sugar down enough to reach your goal.
Hydration is another thing I don’t always see people talking about enough. Blood sugar levels are based on the concentration of glucose in your bloodstream. One way you can lower the concentration is to reduce glucose through diet and exercise. The other way is to keep yourself hydrated.1 You can have the same amount of glucose in your bloodstream, but if you are dehydrated, the reading will be higher than if you are properly hydrated. This can be as simple as making sure after a meal, you drink a glass or two of water. This will help dilute the newly introduced glucose to your body and may help minimize blood sugar spikes.
Another benefit of hydration is the need for water to eliminate waste and help flush your kidneys. When it comes to keeping your kidneys in good condition, water can help with that. While this may not prevent kidney disease or failure from happening, it can delay it or help prevent it from getting worse.1 Staying hydrated doesn’t just benefit your kidneys either, it can help keep your whole body in better condition.
Prevention of complications
In the world of chronic illness, every little advantage you can give yourself to stay ahead of danger is worth it. Don’t wait until you get to a point where it is too late. It’s easy to think that it can’t happen to you or that you are already doing as well as you can. Give your body the respect it deserves and take care of it like you would your car, your pets, or your children and other family members.
Has diabetes impacted your kidney health?
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