June is declared National Kidney Month in the Philippines by virtue of Presidential Decree 184.
Here are 5 ways you can take care of your kidneys:
Drink enough water. Water flushes wastes from your blood in the form of urine. It helps your kidneys by keeping your blood vessels open so blood can travel freely to your kidneys, and deliver essential nutrients. Dehydration overworks your kidneys. The same way goes for drinking too much water which dilutes the sodium level in your blood, resulting in a dangerous condition called hyponatremia.
Maintain healthy body weight. Being overweight can directly affect your kidneys, too. Those few additional pounds drive the kidneys to filter wastes above the normal level and do extra work. Over time, this extra work increases the risk for kidney disease. Your kidneys have to work harder to keep up with your body.
Control your blood pressure. Controlling your diet means controlling your blood pressure. Your diet should contain less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium each day. as much as possible, buy fresh produce and avoid processed foods. IF buying canned goods, look for food labels with words like sodium-free or salt-free; or low, reduced, or no salt or sodium; or unsalted or lightly salted.
Don´t smoke. Smokers are four times more likely to develop renal failure compared to non-smokers. In fact, smoking is an independent risk factor for renal failure. It increases heart rate, blood pressure, and blood clot formation and promotes fatty deposits in the arteries. These factors can affect your renal function.
Don´t self-medicate. Your kidneys could be damaged if you take large amounts of over-the-counter medications, such as aspirin, naproxen, and ibuprofen. When taking medicines, take the general caution of consulting your healthcare provider for proper dosage and instructions.
Source: National Kidney Foundation (US)
Learn more about kidney care, disease prevention, and treatment in the Frequently Asked Questions on Kidney Health document from the Department of Health.