Published on 29 March 2021

Living Well with Kidney Disease - World Kidney Day 2021

Published on 29 March 2021

This year's World Kidney Day marked on 11th March 2021 with "Living well with Kidney Disease" theme. This theme has been brought to increase education and awareness about effective symptom management and patient empowerment, with the ultimate goal of encouraging life participation. Whilst effective measures to prevent kidney disease and its progression are important, patients with kidney disease including those who depend on dialysis and transplantation and their care-partners should also feel supported, especially during pandemics and other challenging periods, by the concerted efforts of kidney care communities.

The kidneys are complicated and amazing organs that do many essential tasks to keep us healthy. The main job of kidneys is to remove toxins and excess water from blood. Kidneys also help to control your blood pressure, to produce red blood cells and to keep bones healthy. Each roughly the size of fist, kidneys are located deep in the abdomen, beneath the rib cage. Kidneys control blood stream levels of many minerals and molecules including sodium and potassium, and help to control blood acidity. Every day kidneys carefully control the salt and water in your body so that your blood pressure remains the same.

there's 8 golden rules to reduce the risk of developing kidney disease:

  • Keep fit, Be active

This can help to maintain an ideal body weight, reduce your blood pressure and the risk of Chronic Kidney Disease.

  • Eat a healthy diet

This can help to maintain an ideal body weight, reduce your blood pressure, prevent diabetes, heart disease and other conditions associated with Chronic Kidney Disease.

  • Check and control your blood sugar

This is especially important for those who are approaching middle age or older. About half of people who have diabetes develop kidney damage but this can be prevented/limited if the diabetes is well controlled.

  • Check and control your blood pressure

High blood pressure can damage your kidneys. This is especially likely when associated with other factors like diabetes, high cholesterol and Cardio-Vascular Diseases. The risk can be reduced with good control of blood pressure. Normal adult blood pressure level is 120/80. Hypertension is diagnosed if, when measured on two different days, the systolic blood pressure readings on both days is ≥140 mmHg and/or the diastolic blood pressure readings on both days is ≥90 mmHg (WHO).

  • Take appropriate fluid intake

The right level of fluid intake for any individual depends on many factors including exercise, climate, health conditions, pregnancy and breastfeeding. Normally this means 8 cups, approximately 2 liters (quarts) per day for a healthy person in a comfortable climate condition.

  • Don’t smoke

Smoking slows the flow of blood to the kidneys. When less blood reaches the kidneys, it can decrease their ability to function normally. Smoking also increases the risk of kidney cancer by about 50%.

  • Don’t take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory/pain-killer pills regularly

Common drugs such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDS)/ pain-killer (e.g. drugs like ibuprofen) can harm the kidneys if taken regularly.

  • Get your kidney function checked if you have one or more of the ‘high risk’ factors(Diabetes, Hypertension, Obese and family history of kidney disease)

“Enrich Collaboration, Exceed the Boundaries”