5 Ways to Help Kidney Patients
Recent statistics suggest about 10 percent of adults suffer from some kind of kidney condition. Kidney disease is becoming increasingly common due to the increase in patients with high-blood pressure and diabetes; both of these conditions remain the leading causes of kidney failure. Although kidney damage can’t be reversed, there are many treatment strategies patients can put into place to slow the disease’s progression. Below, we’ll go over five things you could do to ensure kidney patients have a long, healthy life.
1. Plenty Of Fruits & Veggies: Diet Changes
People who have kidney issues need to watch out for these three nutrients in their diets: sodium, potassium, and phosphorous. Foods rich in these nutrients tend to put an excessive burden on the kidneys’ filtration system. It’s also a good idea for kidney patients to avoid red meat because this can also aggravate the kidneys. Most of the best kidney-friendly foods are good old fruits and veggies like cauliflower, apples, blueberries, and cabbage. A few other fantastic foods to incorporate into your kidney-healing diet include garlic, olive oil, red bell peppers, onions, and shiitake mushrooms.
2. Nutritional Supplements To Consider
Even if kidney patients are eating a well-balanced healthful diet, they might have difficulty getting all of the vitamins and minerals they need to flourish in day-to-day life. One of the kidneys many important roles is to absorb nutrients, so people with kidney damage often have difficulty getting the nutrients they need from diet alone. Depending on the patient’s specific needs, doctors may advise kidney patients to take daily supplements such as calcium, vitamin D, vitamin C, and B-complex. It’s important for kidney patients to take these vitamins on a daily basis to support physical and mental well-being.
3. Watch Out For Certain Medications And Herbs
Unfortunately, many prescription and over-the-counter drugs have been shown to have an adverse effect on the kidneys. Kidney patients are advised to try their best to avoid taking aspirin or ibuprofen because these can damage the kidneys over time. The National Kidney Foundation also highly recommends patients avoid taking herbal supplements because most of them contain high levels of potassium or phosphorous. Kidney patients should always talk with their doctor about any herbal teas or supplements they’re considering incorporating into their daily routine.
4. Practice Some Form Of Stress Reduction
People who suffer from prolonged anxiety are at a higher risk of developing high blood pressure, which could contribute to kidney disease. Therefore, it’s imperative for kidney patients to find something to help them naturally de-stress.
One of the safest and most effective ways to reduce stress is to practice mindfulness meditation for at least 15 minutes every day. To practice this ancient discipline, simply find a quiet place where you won’t be disturbed, sit down, close your eyes, and follow your breath. If thoughts arise during the meditation session, acknowledge them without judgment and return your focus to the breath.
In addition to meditation, a few other stress-busting activities include Tai Chi, meeting with friends, taking warm baths, and listening to soothing music. For people who are under a great deal of stress, consider visiting a licensed talk therapist.
5. Exercise As Often As Possible
Regular exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle, especially for kidney disease patients. In addition to reducing the risk and symptoms of kidney disease, people who exercise a few days per week have lower blood pressure, enhanced endurance, a healthier weight, and a better quality of sleep. According to the National Kidney Foundation, patients should strive to work-out at least 30 minutes per day. A few great activities for kidney disease patients include bicycling, running, walking, and swimming.