Poor Sleep Might Harm Kidneys, Study Suggests! – Recipe Ketchup
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Poor Sleep Might Harm Kidneys, Study Suggests!

Research conducted by the National Kidney Foundation has noted over 90,000 Americans die each year from kidney-related diseases. A shocking revelation that surpasses the percentage of both prostate and breast cancer. Many of us may not be aware that our kidneys play an integral role in sustaining our lives, and keeping them healthy should be a top priority. But how can proper health be achieved? Taking care of our daily habits – what we eat, our sleep patterns, exercise routines – is key to preventing kidney damage and keeping our bodies healthy. Of course, we can’t ignore heart health, critically important to our overall well-being, so keep reading to learn some vital tips that will help you maintain your kidneys and a healthy heart and keep you in overall tip-top health!

Use More Herbs Than Salt

Many people are not aware that one of the number one killers of good health is attributed to the use of salt. Of course, we will admit salt does give our food flavor, but at the same time, it puts your kidneys under more pressure in having to drain water from the body. The excess salt affects the blood flow, which may end up putting your entire body in a compromising situation. Therefore, authorities, including the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), recommend reducing our daily intake to no more than one teaspoon.

Use Fewer Painkillers

We all have the bad habit of taking a painkiller as soon as we feel the slightest of pain, but are we aware of the underlying dangers? Taking a painkiller occasionally is okay, but when it gets too much, you put a strain on the kidneys as the elements found in these medications limit the proper flow of blood to the organ. The New England Journal of Medicine carried out a study that indicated that a yearly average of 5,000 or more cases of kidney failure in the U.S. occurs as a result of the overdosing on pain relief medications such as Tylenol and Advil.

Treat The “Regular” Cold As A Threat

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) notes two or three times per year most people suffer from a cold, and only push it aside like an annoying nasal problem. However, you may be doing more harm to your body’s long-term health than you can imagine. A cold left untreated will result in the body producing an excess number of antibodies, which are a high-risk health factor for your kidneys. It may not happen right away, but the more these antibodies are fed and protected, the faster your kidneys are deteriorating.

Relieve Yourself The Moment You Have The Need To

Many of us have the bad habit of holding in our urine, especially if we don’t want to stop what we are doing at a given moment. But are you aware that this is one of the cruelest things you could ever do to your body? Bear in mind, the urine is a base of waste and harmful bacteria that accumulates the longer it stays in; the bacteria will eventually make its way to your kidneys, which is where the problems really begin. The next time you have an urge to go… make sure you do!

Go For Healthy & Unprocessed Foods

A lot of the labeling on most processed food can make it seem like a healthy choice for you, while it actually hides the truth of the matter. Processed foods contain a lot of salt, potassium, and phosphorus in much higher amounts than the body should consume. Seeing as your kidneys generally filter through the small quantity of these ingredients that your body needs, they will be put under immense pressure with the excess amounts. Go for fresher and more naturally produced foods; your body will thank you later.

Say No To The Bubbles

Sodas have no source of benefit for our bodies and only add a massive amount of sugar we definitely could do without. Consuming one 12-ounce drink shockingly has as much sugar as two or more donuts, which will put an enormous amount of strain on your kidneys’ effective functioning. Countless research has shown that drinking two or more soda daily can as much as double the risk of damaging your kidneys permanently, not only because of the sugar but also because of the phosphoric acid that they contain.

Sleep For Longer

Getting adequate rest will leave your kidneys in good shape because the longer you stay up, the longer your kidneys do as well. Research done at the University of Chicago demonstrated that those who slept for under seven hours every night had a 19 percent increased chance of kidney failure than those who slept for longer. Lack of sleep or rest puts too much strain on the functions of the kidneys and can eventually lead to failure.

Take The Full Dose of Prescribed Medications

Many of us have the terrible practice of stopping our medication before we have finished the full course of the prescription because we already feel a whole lot better. Don’t be tempted! Your prescribed medication helps to regulate your body (blood pressure medication, for example) and as routine is generally good for the body, changing the method of your prescription and taking them as a casual thing will throw your kidneys’ off-balance, confusing your body’s routine flow, which can be bad for those organs.

Know Your Supplements

Supplements can be significant, and many of us turn to them occasionally or take some each day. But have we ever taken the time to research exactly what it is we are consuming, and precisely what the dosage should be, especially if taken in combination with other medicines? Take cranberry and vitamin C, for instance, small amounts are perfect for the body, but too much can lead to kidney stones. Other supplements that can be damaging to your kidneys should you consume too much of them also include willow bark, liquorice, wormwood oil, geranium, and even turmeric. Again, that isn’t to say those ingredients are harmful to your kidneys – just make sure you have the right amount and that it isn’t an adverse reaction with other medications you are on.

Exercise With Internal Health In Mind

A lot of us exercise for the sole purpose of losing weight and enhancing our physical beauty. But according to the National Kidney Foundation, our internal health also benefits from regular exercising where our muscle functions improve, sleeping habits improve as well as stabilizes our blood pressure, and the research shows that even just 150 minutes a week of light exercise is enough to help. All these benefits work in line with your internal health, more specifically, your kidneys, in helping them to function effectively.

Don’t Overdo Your Exercising

Working out is a great way to live long and stay healthy but overdoing it can be detrimental to your health. There is no need to go for hours each day, as this puts too much strain on the body. When you injure yourself during training, the body releases critical enzymes that are bad for your kidneys. This problem is known as Rhabdomyolysis, and though it is a rare condition, it occurs mainly when people begin taking up exercise and still don’t know their body’s limit. Build up your muscles slowly, and if you feel tired, take a break and let your body recuperate from the immense pressure it is going through.

Try and Avoid Energy Drinks

It is highly recommended to go slow on the amounts of energy drinks one consumes regularly. The high dosage of caffeine, amino acid taurine, and sugar formulated in these drinks put the body on the edge of overwork and stress. The quest to have the ingredients for these drinks regulated is continually being pushed by scientists across the world, primarily as kidney failures are on the rise worldwide, particularly in younger children due to the increased consumption of such drinks. Also, if you don’t know if you are already suffering from a kidney disorder, then we are sorry to break it to you, but these drinks could be like a death wish.

Stay Hydrated With More Water

The next time you feel thirsty, ditch the juice and go for some water. Bear in mind the role of the kidneys is to filter water from the body, and as such, the more hydrated you are, the better it works for the organ. Failure to drink a lot of water will leave your urine with a higher amount of mineral, which in turn crystallizes the inner layers of the kidneys leading to the development of kidney stones. There are no “set rules” on the amounts of water to have, but medical experts have noted an average of 9 cups for women, and 13 for men is about right.

Lower Your Consumption of Red Meats

A lot of us love meat, but are we really aware how much too much is bad for us? Consuming red meat once in a while is good enough but proven harmful if done too often. There are toxic elements found in the red meat than can be detrimental to your kidneys (based on reports from the American Society of Nephrology), and one should be careful how they eat it. Kidney failures can be reduced at an average of 62 percent if red meat is replaced by a plant-based protein at least once a week.

Get on Your Feet More Often

Moving around may turn out to be a healthier choice for your kidneys than sitting for long hours. An estimated 1-hour per day of physical activity will help to regulate your blood flow and ease the pressure on the kidneys. Be flexible with your desk job by taking regular walks to the restroom or even to get water.

Margarine or Butter – Which Is Healthier?

In recent times, some consumers have been lobbying for butter to be replaced with margarine stating it may be a healthier option. However, the reality is that though they have different ingredients, they are both unhealthy if eaten too much, as the fat in both will raise your cholesterol which in turn damages your kidneys.

Eat Moderately

This warning is especially for the festive and holiday seasons as persons tend to forget that they should eat in moderation. Too much food in the body at once gives the kidneys more work in having to filter through a whole lot at once. Also, when the body has too much protein, fat, and carbs, the kidneys are placed under stress as these are harder to break down in the body. For the holidays, it is safer to take a small amount of each serving instead.

Stress Is Harmful

When we stress over that situation, it not only raises our blood pressure and gives us a headache, but also affects our body in other ways. Diet changes and lack of proper rest are side effects of stress, all which have the ability to throw off the balance of our bodies. Ensuring we are relaxed at all times will leave our kidneys in better shape to function effectively, so next time you feel stress begin try and take a walk, a break, or even a glass of water, to help clear your mind.

Cut The Sugar Intake

Of course, sugar helps the body in its own way but only when consumed in small portions, and this is particularly naturally occurring sugar like in fruit, rather than processed white sugar. The kidneys are pushed into overdrive when there is too much sugar in the blood. According to research conducted, it was revealed that some persons who suffer from sugar-related illnesses like diabetes are at a high risk of developing kidney disease. Help yourself and make the necessary diet changes.

Minimize The Use Of Artificial Sweeteners

As a result of those trying to reduce their sugar intake, lately there has been an increase in the number of people replacing sugar with artificial sweeteners. However, we are not doing our bodies any good with these replacements, as they have been proven to hurt your kidneys both directly and indirectly. Two or less artificially sweetening ingredients per day may not be as terrible, but it is better to substitute with the likes of honey or Stevia.

Work for those Muscles and Ditch the Enhancer

A lot of people have resorted to taking body enhancers instead of working their way to achieving the muscles they want. These enhancers, such as steroids, are harmful to your internal health, especially your kidneys. Medical reports have shown that more than 90 percent of bodybuilders have been affected in one way or another by these drugs, and only after they cease their use, their bodies return to a healthy form. These drugs also cause swelling in the body and raise your cholesterol, which is detrimental to your kidneys’ health.

Watch Your Heartburn Medications

Though some heartburn medications are okay to be taken every day, some should be avoided at all costs. Take, for instance, proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), some research has indicated that these are not safe as the substance which aids in cooling your acid refluxes ends up hurting your kidneys. However, recommendations on heartburn medications such as H2 Blockers are less likely to harm your kidneys and can be a great substitute. Be mindful of speaking with your health professionals, however, before making the switch.

Get Your Blood Pressure Checked

Many people are aware that blood pressure is the “silent killer” (as it is nicknamed) because it doesn’t show any “precise” symptoms or signs if anything is wrong. As such, it is recommended to get your blood pressure checked regularly to work on its stability if needs be (as stipulated by the American Heart Association). If your blood pressure rises, it will put a strain on the kidney to effectively regulate the blood, which may lead to kidney failure and other life-threatening illnesses.

Limit Your Coffee Intake

Having a daily cup of coffee is not so bad, in fact some research even indicates it can be good for you, but when it turns into several cups per day, every day, that’s when you are really hurting yourself. The excessive amounts of caffeine in the body increases the blood pressure and pushes the kidneys to overwork because of the imbalance and instability. Research by the National Kidney Foundation notes it is okay to have between two to four cups per day but with high consideration for additives such as creamers, sugar, and flavoured syrup, which is high in sugar and fat. The less you consume, the more your body will love you.

Watch Those Shellfish!

We have heard it countless times that seafood has some significant health benefits our bodies could really benefit from. However, once again, it must be eaten in moderation. Shellfish contain a toxic chemical known as domoic acid, and eating too much can lead to “Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning”.

Be Careful with Those Medical Scans

A lot of people refuse to do medical scans and checks because of the feeling and potential side effects that may follow. Like MRIs, other scans involve the use of a dye on the body to provide the medical results needed. However, this dye can lead to Contrast-Induced Nephropathy (CIN), a disease that causes the kidneys to fail for up to three days or more. Though this disease can be reversed, as well as being extremely rare, it can still be critical and harmful to your health.

Indulge in Healthy Fats Instead

So many of us are petrified of fats in our food as we have been told that fat is dangerous for our health, but many of us are unaware that there are indeed good fats that the body uses to function effectivity. Some of these include monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats, so check products for the labelling of these. The fat best avoided is trans-fat, as too much of this can increase the chances of developing diseases by up to twenty-one percent. And don’t forget that any kind of fat, or food for that matter, everything in moderation is best.

Go for at least 7-8 Hours of Sleep a Night

Contrary to what many motivators and successful people are saying about not sleeping too much, lack of it may harm your body and prevent you from living healthily enough to let you see that success. Medical researches have shown that getting an average of 7-8 hours of sleep each night will help to reduce the pressure placed on the heart and in turn, increase your chances of avoiding diseases. Sleeping allows your body to produce healthy chemicals that aid in lowering your heart rate and blood pressure.

Focused Breathing For 10-15 Minutes Each Day

Meditation may be the order of the day to keep your heart rate low and your blood pressure stable. Stress can be a terrible thing when it goes on for hours, or even days. This can result in severe implications for your health as with each muscle-tightening, shorter breathing and faster heart rate, you are setting yourself up for critical problems. We all go through moderate stress and anxiety, and many of us on a daily basis, but when it leads to chronic stress (even with no prior heart problems), you are likely to develop fatal health issues. Take a little time each day to breathe!

Eat More Fruits And Vegetables

Fruits and veggies are a perfect start in helping your heart and overall health. Though there may not be a set group of fruits that you need to eat, the more you do (but still in moderation) the better for your body and your brain. Having roughly five servings each day is excellent for your heart, while ten servings may reduce your chances of diseases by up to twenty-eight percent.

Don’t Watch the Whole Series in One Night!

That TV series might be so interesting that you just have to spend all night watching it, meaning you end up not getting enough sleep, or putting off your tasks so that you can stay in front of the screen. Based on research conducted with an average of 70,000 women, there were mixed results at the end, with most reducing their chances of a heart attack by roughly ninety-two percent. At the start of the survey, a lot of these women suffered from diabetes and heart-related conditions. But how did they improve their health that much? They all reduced their TV time each week to seven hours while doing more exercise. The more you watch the TV, the less you exercise and consume more unhealthy snacks.

Do A Workout Session Every Day

No one said you had to do a strenuous workout each day, but at least 15 to 20 minutes of exercise daily is optimal for your health. Based on medical reports a little jogging or walking will dramatically increase your lifespan. Are there stairs at your office or home? Try and use them instead of the lift a few times a day.

Have A Social Life

Having a social life helps to keep you relaxed and in good shape as well as reduce the risk of heart diseases based on scientific research. A positive environment with those you feel safe, comfortable, and confident around decreases stress and depression levels. So, the next time you feel like sleeping in, ditch that and go to the park or the movies with the clan.

Drink More Water

Water helps the blood flow more flexibly and efficiently through the veins as the thicker the blood, the harder the muscles have to work in pumping it. Failure to drink enough water will cause your heart to deteriorate over time. As we have heard countless times, eight or more glasses of water per day is ideal for our bodies.

Let Your Legs Work More Often

Having a desk job can have some serious underlying problems that many people don’t realize, and only when it gets out of hand, then they start to try and fix it. The more you go on your legs, the better it will be for your heart’s health as it helps in regulating blood flow and keeps the muscles intact and flexible. You can help yourself by taking short walks for your water break, to the bathroom, or even parking your car a little farther than usual, so you have to walk to it. Help your heart by flexing your legs more often.

Trick The “Silent Killer”

Your blood pressure is almost the main factor that leads to most health conditions suffered. Failure to keep a check on your blood pressure can result in hypertensive heart disease (where the heart thickens, and the arteries are narrowed, cutting the proper flow of blood to the heart). The American Heart Association has been advocating for a long time now for people to make their heart health a main priority. Though you may not be affected now, don’t neglect it for the future you.

Take Some Time for Yourself

Yes, we are healthy and have not suffered any minor or major illness in recent times or ever suffered any, for that matter. This does not mean we should let ourselves go without taking some time to get our regular check-ups and such. We ought to get our blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and other chronic health disorders checked regularly in case there is a silent symptom; we can correct it before it gets late. Once or twice a year is highly recommended, and our negligence could be our ultimate downfall.

It Is More Than the Physical Look

Doctors have made it clear that it is not all about the physical appearance, but what your body mass is. Many people are sometimes satisfied with the fact that they are of a particular physique without taking into consideration whether or not their Body Mass Index (BMI) may be the cause of their ill-health. A high BMI can result in heart diseases, so you need to check with your medical doctor to know all there is to know. Also, do not take the BMI information from the internet as this is way more than height and weight stipulation.

Brushing Your Teeth Is Critical

Brushing your teeth or flossing at least twice daily is not only important for following the best hygiene practices but surprisingly also beneficial for protecting your heart. The bacteria produced by gum diseases have the potential to reach your bloodstream and alter the way your heart functions and operates. So keep in mind that a bad habit of not flossing or brushing can lead to a stroke.

Are Avocados Safe?

The health benefits of having avocado in your diet are great as they provide the body with rich nutrients such as fibre, good fats, and antioxidants. However, for those who suffer from any kidney-related issues, they may want to reduce or possibly eliminate this food from their diet due to the high levels of potassium it contains. The less your body as to deal with, the better it will be for your kidneys’ health.

Stay Clear of Canned Foods

Canned foods and your kidneys go to war with each other. Take note that these canned foods do contain a high amount of sodium (to preserve and extend shelf life), and this can cause severe issues for your kidneys if consumed. Of course, they might be cheaper and more convenient for now, but what happens two years down the line when your health is deteriorating? For solace, you may drain and rinse your tin items like beans and tuna, but this method still doesn’t decrease all the salt contents.

What Bread Should I Eat?

Most of us have heard that whole wheat bread is a healthier choice, and we won’t discredit medical reports, but those suffering already from kidney issues may want to consider ditching whole-wheat options. This is as a result of the high levels of potassium and phosphorus found in bran and whole grains, meaning that surprisingly refined white bread may be a better choice. But for better heart health, consider spelt or rye breads. Don’t forget to keep in mind that shop-bought loaves contain added amounts of salt/sodium, and often sugar too. If you have health issues already best to ask medical experts what is best for you in this case.

Eating Brown Rice

Brown rice contains bran and whole grains, which again is high in potassium like whole-wheat bread. The amounts of potassium and phosphorus in a cup of brown rice is more than two times the amount in the same quantity of white rice. You may go for some substitutes like bulgur, pearled bulgur, couscous, and buckwheat as these contain a lot less amount of potassium.

Limit Your Bananas

Like many other tropical fruits, bananas have a high dose of potassium, and as such, it is not recommended to have one each day if you have kidney problems. An average medium banana has roughly 422 mg of potassium, which is too much for one intake if you have a limit of 2,000 mg of potassium per day. Pineapple has a lot less and can be a substantial alternative for your fruit serving.

Dairy Is Good & Bad

Dairy products like milk are known for their benefits in building strong bones and muscle health while, on the contrary, too much can hurt you. There are numerous amounts of nutrients one can get from consuming dairy products, but it is a fact that they contain high levels of potassium and phosphorus. The build-up of these nutrients in the body puts pressure on the kidney as it has to work in filtering and flushing the bloodstream. This, in return, will cause the bones to get weak and susceptible to breakage and fracture. Also, high fat in some dairy products could clog your arteries and be damaging for your heart health. Going for alternatives like almond milk, which is low in these nutrients, could be a better choice.

Being Mindful of Strep Throat

This infection will see the body producing antibodies that aid in fighting and getting rid of the problem. However, when the body produces too much, they tend to seep into the filtering process of the kidney and cause it to become inflamed. Though this feeling doesn’t last for long, there can be long-term kidney problems experienced from it.

Be Cautious with Antibiotics

Antibiotics play their role in helping our bodies fight the onset of bacteria and infections. However, one must be careful with the use of these medications as they can be harmful to your kidneys’ health. Antibiotics such as penicillin and cephalosporins are high in contents that can trigger serious kidney issues even to the extent of being fatal.

Go for Health Screening

Kidney failure is no joke, and the more you know and understand it, the better. It is highly recommended that one goes for screening to find out the status of their kidney health. More so if you or family members suffer from high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, or have a hereditary trace of kidney failure. The sooner you know the condition, the better it is to treat and possibly cure.

Have Citrus Fruit in Moderation

Oranges are a great source of vitamin C that the body needs, but it also has a high level of potassium, which the blood and kidneys don’t need. There is an estimated 333 mg of potassium in a large orange and 473 mg in a glass of its juice. This can be a little too high for those with kidney problems. You can always substitute with grapes, apples, or cranberries along with their juices (lower levels of potassium).

Avoid Pickles, Olives and Relish If You Can

For these foods to get their taste and be “cured”, they have lots of salt added before consumption. This should be avoided if you suffer from any kidney-related health issues. Also, though many groceries offer “reduced-salt” options, you are still not safe with them.

Good Chance with Potatoes & Sweet Potatoes

Potatoes and sweet potatoes are known for their high levels of potassium as a regular-sized baked potato can have up to 610 mg of potassium while a sweet potato would have around 541 mg. However, there may be a glimmer of hope with both types of potatoes as they can be soaked or leached to reduce the potassium they contain. You can dice the potatoes and boil them for roughly 10 minutes to reduce up to 50% of the potassium, while soaking for at least four to five hours may reduce the levels even lower. After all, you may be able to enjoy that potato pie but, of course, in moderation.

Eating Tomatoes

Tomatoes have a high potassium rate whether raw or cooked, and a tomato sauce can have up to 900 mg of potassium. You may opt for an alternative like a roasted red pepper sauce, which brings about a similar flavor and taste but is much healthier for your kidneys.

Dealing with Processed Foods

Eating processed food daily can be a bad decision, not just for your kidney health but also for your general health. Processed foods are high in sodium and favourites concentrates, which too are laden with salt and other harmful elements. The next time you go out and decide to buy foods like frozen pizza, instant noodles, or even microwavable foods, just know you are slowly killing yourself.

Greens Shrink but Nutrient Levels Remain

A lot of us are used to the “once it is cooked, it will shrink” mentality, but what we fail to realize is that the nutrient levels always remain the same. For green leafy vegetables like swiss chard, spinach, and beet greens, they are generally very good for us thanks to their rich nutrient benefits but are also high in potassium. Once again, you can have a little but not too much.

Understanding Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs)

As it relates to GMOs, their health benefits and harmful elements are still being researched to figure what you gain when you consume them. However, most processed foods do contain these elements and are not the best choices. But, to date, there are health issues when it comes to the kidneys. For sure, we may not be able to avoid all the foods that contain GMOs, but the safest alternatives are fresh and naturally produced foods.

How to Eat Peanuts

Kidney stones are a big issue worldwide with the Calcium Oxalate Kidney Stones being the most popular, according to the National Kidney Foundation. Oxalate level is high in peanut, and the more you consume (if you have kidney problems), the more detrimental it may be. If you can avoid it in its entirety, do so.

Leave Dried Apricots Off Your Menu

Apricots may be rich in vitamin A & C as well as fiber, but what many are not aware of is the high level of potassium they have. This is pretty unhealthy for your kidneys’ health. Take note, a cup of dried apricots contains roughly 1,500 mg of potassium, which is already 75% of your daily intake of potassium. Leave it off your menu or maybe just have one or two once in a while.

How To Eat Prunes, Raisins & Dates

As for these fruits, if you have kidney issues already then we say, “if you can avoid them, do so”. Prunes, raisins, and dates are quite high in potassium as a cup of prunes has up to and/or over 1,274 mg of potassium. This is a high quantity, so an alternative like plums could work out much better for you. If you don’t have any kidney problems these are a better snack than something processed and sugary.

Source: buzznoble.com

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About the author

Pixie Deacon

Hi, my name is Pixie. I am a true blue Southern girl, cookbook author, entrepreneur, self-taught food photographer and lover of chocolate.

I love to cook, bake, entertain and create new recipes. I am blessed to have come from a long line of fantastic Southern cooks. It’s a pleasure to be able to share all my wonderful family recipes that have been passed down from generations and recipes that I have developed over the years along with my passion for entertaining and Southern culture.
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