Renal Resolutions: 9 Tips to Improve Your Health This Year


When you have renal disease, it’s imperative that you protect the remaining health of your kidneys. Your diet makes a difference. Limiting the amount of sodium, potassium, phosphorous and protein you consume from foods can help. But it’s not the only thing you can do to protect your health, feel better, and be healthier.

Thinking about New Year’s resolutions? Here are 10 tips to improve your health this year:

1. Start the day with breakfast

In the National Weight Control Registry study, researchers found that people who ate a healthy breakfast daily were more successful at losing weight and keeping it off than those who skipped the morning meal. Start the day out right with a Renal-Friendly breakfast.

2. Skip or limit painkillers

If your doctor prescribes painkillers after surgery, or for a medical condition, follow those instructions. Ask if you’re required to take the full dose, or if they’re even necessary. Avoid or limit over-the-counter pain medications too. Both can lead to further kidney damage.

3. Be more active

Maybe you’re managing renal disease just fine now without much exercise. But what if your kidneys fail and you need dialysis or surgery? Research shows patients fare better when being active is a regular part of their lifestyle. Regular exercise also helps control blood pressure, improve cholesterol levels, sleep, blood sugar levels, and body composition. Sit less, move more.

4. Organize medical records

It’s a great way to reduce stress, feel better, and improve your health. Organize your medical records. Throw away expired prescriptions, and keep track of what medicines you’re taking. Write doctor’s appointments on a calendar or use a calendar app on your mobile device. Create a list of all your healthcare providers, names, and phone numbers in one place.

5, Don’t smoke, or quit if you do

If you smoke, or you’re regularly exposed to secondhand smoke, your health is at risk. Smoke prevents blood flow your kidneys need to function. It can also negatively impact medications to manage high blood pressure. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you do, get help to quit.

6. Get a check up

How are your kidneys? When you’re living with renal disease, there’s really only one sure way to tell. Get a check up. Your doctor will test your urine for protein levels, and your blood to estimate creatine levels. Both tests provide your doctor with biometric data that measures the health of your kidneys. If there’s a problem, it’s better to prevent complications than wait until it’s too late.

7. Maintain a healthy weight, or lose weight

Did you know about 70 percent of all adults are overweight or obese? It’s a risk factor for a long list of chronic health problems, including kidney disease. Why? Being overweight makes it harder for your kidneys to filter and eliminate waste and fluid. Need to lose weight? Follow a Renal-Friendly Diet, and be more active.

8. Sleep 7 to 8 hours a night

When you don’t get enough sleep, stress hormones linked to hunger, appetite, and metabolism remain high. It’s one factor that contributes to overeating, craving unhealthy foods, and weight gain. Create a bedtime routine. Go to bed at the same time every night. Make your room dark and quiet. And don’t watch TV or use electronics before bed.

9. Limit salt

It’s one of they key dietary recommendations for people living with Renal disease. Skip the salt shaker and season foods with herbs and spices. And avoid foods high in sodium like processed meals, fast food, deli means, and canned soup.

Follow these Renal Resolutions for better health in 2020.