KEARNEY, Neb. — March is National Kidney Month.
Rosa Pinon, with Two Rivers Public Health Department, said there are no symptoms for early kidney disease.
She said kidneys are a bean shaped organ about the size of a fist located in the middle of your back on the left and right sides of your spine just below your rib cage. The kidneys main job is to filter extra water and wastes out of your blood and make urine. They also help control blood pressure and make hormones that your body needs to stay healthy
Kidney Disease is a growing problem
- More than 20 million Americans may have kidney disease and many more are at risk.
- Early kidney disease has no symptoms. Blood and urine tests are the only way to know if you have it.
What is Kidney Disease?
- If they become damaged, kidneys cannot filter blood like they should, and this can cause wastes to build up in the body.
- It usually does not go away, and can get worse over time, causing the kidneys to stop working.
Are you at risk for Kidney Disease?
- Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart or blood vessel disease, or a family history of kidney failure can put you at risk for kidney disease.
- If you are at risk for kidney disease, talk to your health care provider about getting checked for kidney disease.
Things you can do to keep your kidneys healthy:
- Keep your blood pressure at the target set by your health care provider.
- Control your blood glucose level, if you have diabetes.
- Keep your cholesterol levels in the target range.
- Take medicines the way your provider tells you to.
- Cut back on salt.
- Choose foods that are healthy for your heart: fresh fruits, fresh or frozen vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy foods.
- Limit your alcohol intake.
- Be more physically active.
- Lose weight if you are overweight.
- Take steps to quit smoking, if you smoke.
You can learn more about keeping your kidneys healthy from the National Kidney Disease Education Program at nkdep.nih.gov.