10 Ways to Improve Kidney Function
Your kidneys are responsible for getting rid of all the toxins and waste byproducts floating around your bloodstream. Their job is essential for taking care of your overall health and vital organs such as your heart, brain and eyes. What's the secret to getting these filtering powerhouses to work at peak performance? Learn how to improve kidney function with these 10 awesome tips.
Drink Enough Water
Your kidneys will thank you with better filtration if you reach your daily water goal. Adults should shoot for four to six glasses of water a day, as recommended by the Cleveland Clinic.
Take Great Care of Your Heart
High blood pressure and high cholesterol harm the blood vessels in your kidneys. One way to fight inflammation and lower blood pressure is to add olive oil to your diet, according to Healthline.
Keep a Tighter Leash on Your Sweet Tooth
Overdoing it with your blood sugar levels is bad for all your organs, including the kidneys. Too much sugar can lead to kidney damage or diabetes, as stated by the National Kidney Foundation. Cut down on sugary and processed foods.
Eat Less Salt
High levels of sodium in your blood make it harder for your kidneys to filter out toxins. Plus, too much salt can cause high blood pressure. To give your food a healthy boost of flavor that's packed with vitamins, use garlic instead.
Learn to Love Fruits and Veggies
Getting plenty of vitamins and nutrients is like feeding your kidneys a feast. Go wild with high-fiber green veggies such as cabbage and arugula, antioxidant-rich blueberries and red grapes, and UTI-fighting cranberries.
Spending too much time sitting down is hard on your kidneys, according to the National Kidney Foundation. On the other hand, regular exercise improves their function and helps you control both blood sugar and blood pressure.
Avoid Taking Too Many Pain Pills
It's OK to take a few ibuprofen capsules or other NSAIDs if you have pain. Just be sure to follow the recommended dose. Taking too many over-the-counter pain pills can damage your kidneys, the Cleveland Clinic warns.
Head to Bed Early
Getting enough sleep is vital for your kidneys. Besides giving you a positive outlook and more energy, following your body's natural circadian rhythm is important for regulating kidney function, according to the National Kidney Foundation.
Get to Know Your Family Better
Asking about your family history of kidney disease is a good idea because it lets you know if you need to be extra careful with what you eat or the type of medicine you take. An annual checkup or free kidney screenings can tell you about your GFR and kidney function.
Cigarettes harden the arteries throughout your body, including the ones in your kidneys. This makes your kidneys work overtime, increasing their risk of premature disease or reduced kidney function levels.