The kidney is an organ that filters waste products, excess water, and other impurities from the blood. The organ is so important so we must keep them healthy.


Kidneys regulate pH, salt, and potassium levels in the body. Not only does it produces positive hormones that regulate blood, but it also controls the production of red blood cells. 

Kidneys are also responsible for the activation of the formation of vitamin D in the body which helps the system to absorb calcium. With more calcium, the body can build bones and regulate muscle function.

With the many beneficial functions kidneys have for our body, maintaining their health is important to overall health and general well-being.

As a reminder to every one of World Kidney Day on March 10, 2022, here are some tips to help keep your kidneys healthy.

Unsplash/ Yuliyan Grozdev


Keep active, be fit
Regular exercise is more than just reducing the waistline, it also prevents chronic kidney disease which is an irreversible destruction of the kidney. With maintaining a fit body, the kidney helps reduce high blood pressure and boost heart health to keep kidney damage away. 

Exercise does not necessarily need to run marathons, but it could simply be walking, running, cycling, or even dancing. So, find an activity to keep your body busy and active while having fun. Going on field trips to theme parks could be one of the media to do that. 

Control blood sugar
People with diabetes or a condition that easily causes high blood sugar is more prone to kidney damage. When body cells can no longer use the glucose in the blood system, it is more likely that kidneys are forced to work harder than they should to filter the bloodstream. Over time, this could lead to serious damage to the kidneys as they had been overworked. 

For that reason, controlling the level of blood sugar is essential to reduce the risk of kidney damage. One thing that could be done is by replacing sodas or sweetened juices with mineral water. Especially for Indonesians who typically like to drink sweet ice tea right after every meal, now is the time to cut it back gradually.

Monitor blood pressure
Approximately five out of 10 people do not know that they have high blood pressure. Therefore, monitoring blood pressure could be one of the ways to keep the doctors away. Healthy blood pressure readings are 120/80 according to the World Health Organization. If the readings are consistently above 140/90, then it is time to make that appointment with your doctor. 

High blood pressure can cause kidney damage. Some people also have other occurring diseases like diabetes, heart disease, or high cholesterol with high blood pressure. In this case, the impact on the human body can be significant. 

To maintain healthy blood pressure, one can try to reduce sodium in daily intake and cut back on caffeine. Another is to limit the amount of alcohol intake. Instead of stressing over it, one can try doing daily or weekly yoga classes. 

Unsplash/ Dan Gold


Monitor weight and eat a healthy diet
By aiming for a healthy diet, a person can maintain ideal body weight, reduce blood pressure, prevent diabetes, heart diseases, and other conditions associated with Chronic Kidney Disease. As stated above of the dangers of Chronic Kidney Disease, it is crucial to stay in the normal range of the body mass index. 

A healthy diet includes consuming food low in sodium, avoiding processed meats and instant foods. One could focus on eating fresh and natural foods, such as cauliflower, blueberries, fish, whole grains, and more. In the modern era, many catering services also provide you with the ease of that food which is recommended for busy people. 

Drink plenty of fluids
The human body is made out of 80 percent water. For a long time, the medical world has recommended and advised individuals to drink at least eight glasses of water a day. The key is to stay hydrated appropriately to the level of activities that one does, such as exercise, climate, health conditions, pregnancy, and breastfeeding. 

Water does not simply keep the body hydrated, but it also helps clear sodium and toxins from the kidneys. It expels the useless waste through secretion of sweat and excretion. People who have previously had kidney stones should drink a bit more water to prevent other stone deposits in the future.

No smoking
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), smoking causes cancer, heart disease, stroke, lung diseases, diabetes, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Smoking also increases the risk for tuberculosis, certain eye diseases, and problems of the immune system, including rheumatoid arthritis.

A cigarette contains several damaging substances. For example, nicotine is a colorless oil that can increase blood pressure and heart rate. In long term, it could narrow the arteries causing blockage of the bloodstream to the heart. Another in a cigarette is carbon monoxide which is defective combustion of the carbon element. If too much is carried in the hemoglobin, then one could suffocate from the lack of oxygen. If the blood is lack oxygen, then it will not flow properly.

From the same problem, it accumulates to a big problem that affects the kidney to function incorrectly. Instead of smoking, it is recommended to change the habit by chewing gum. 

OTC pills awareness
Over-the-counter(OTC) is a common drug that one could buy easily. Drugs such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDS)/painkillers like ibuprofen can harm the kidneys if taken regularly. For that reason, it is always recommended to consult with a doctor or pharmacist who can explain the side effects of a drug.

Regular kidney test
Regular kidney test does not necessarily need to be done every week, but it could be done once a month, especially for those people who are in high-risk conditions. The high-risk include people who have diabetes, hypertension, obesity, or even a family history of kidney diseases. Additionally, people who are over 60 years old, ever have cardiovascular diseases should talk to a doctor about the regular tests. 

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