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Diabetes and Kidney Disease


Diabetes doesn’t stop in a lowered or heightened blood sugar level. It’s a condition that invites risks and complications to different organs that keep our bodies running. When it comes to cleaning our bodies from toxins, it’s the kidney’s job to make it happen; A damaged kidney hinders this process. Diabetes is one such condition that can affect how our kidneys function.


Kidney disease caused by Diabetes has many names: Diabetic Kidney Disease, Chronic Kidney Disease, Kidney Disease of Diabetes, and Diabetic Nephropathy.1 Diabetic Kidney Disease develops slowly over many years; it occurs when high blood glucose damages blood vessels in the kidneys.1,2 High blood pressure caused by Diabetes can also damage the kidneys.1,2,4 When damage occurs, waste materials will build up in the blood, causing the body to retain more water and salt than it should.2


Complications that lead to the disease are most likely to develop with improper diabetes management and other health conditions already present in individuals.1,3 Not following meal plans (eating food high in sugar, high in salt), not being able to maintain weight, not being physically active, and not giving up on vices such as smoking or alcohol intake are some of the -lifestyle behaviors that may cause complications leading to kidney disease.1,3 Other factors include heart problems and having a family history of kidney disease.1


Symptoms are unlikely at the early stage of the disease;3 The kidneys work hard until almost all function is gone.4 For those who already have Kidney Disease, the symptoms may be vague and not specific, unless properly consulted and tested by health professionals.1,3,4 These symptoms are:1,3


  • Difficulty thinking clearly.

  • A poor appetite.

  • Weight loss.

  • Dry, itchy skin.

  • Muscle cramps.

  • Puffiness around the eyes.

  • Needing to pass urine more often than usual.

  • Albumin/protein in the urine

  • High blood pressure

  • Ankle and leg swelling, leg cramps

  • High levels of BUN and creatinine in the blood

  • Less need for insulin or anti-diabetic medications

  • Morning sickness, nausea, and vomiting

  • Weakness, paleness, and anemia


Prevention of kidney disease for people with diabetes is possible by maintaining or reaching both blood glucose and blood pressure goals.1,4,5 Maintaining good lifestyle habits can also go a long way in slowing down or preventing complications. And of course, medicine or other types of treatment are necessary and important in diabetes and other diseases management.1,4


Nutritional supplements such as Diabetasol, provides the nutrition a person with Diabetes needs in their day-to-day life. Diabetasol is a meal replacement nutrition powder packed with 11 essential vitamins and 6 minerals. It contains Vita Digest, a combination of inulin fiber and slow-digesting carbohydrates, which helps to regulate blood sugar by sustaining the energy release, hence it makes you feel full longer. The components of vitamins A, C, D, E, and zinc in Diabetasol also help enhance your immune system, making you less prone to infection.


As for those already afflicted with Kidney Disease, treatment will also deal with blood glucose and blood pressure control, if a bit more intensive.4,5 The goal of the treatment is to prevent the decline of renal function, as well as prevent the occurrence of cardiovascular conditions.5 Diet intervention, lipid, and cholesterol reduction, and anemia treatment are also some of the ways we can manage Diabetic Kidney Disease.5


When it comes to health, taking care of the whole body and not just specific organs is always the right choice. Conditions such as Diabetes, in combination with other diseases, can lead to other more grave conditions. Each part of our body affects another; If one part gets damaged, another will be affected. Through good lifestyle behaviors, we can maintain good health and live longer lives.



References:


1 Diabetic Kidney Disease. (2021, August 18). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/preventing-problems/diabetic-kidney-disease



2 Diabetes - A Major Risk Factor for Kidney Disease. (2020, September 1). National Kidney Foundation. https://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/diabetes


3 Knott, L. (2020, March 11). Diabetic Kidney Disease. Symptoms, Diagnosis & Complications Patient. https://patient.info/diabetes/diabetes-mellitus-leaflet/diabetic-kidney-disease


4 Kidney Disease (Nephropathy) | ADA. (n.d.). American Diabetes Association. Retrieved August 18, 2021, from https://www.diabetes.org/diabetes/complications/kidney-disease-nephropathy


5 Gross, J. L., de Azevedo, M. J., Silveiro, S. P., Canani, L. H., Caramori, M. L., & Zelmanovitz, T. (2004). Diabetic Nephropathy: Diagnosis, Prevention, and Treatment. Diabetes Care, 28(1), 164–176. https://doi.org/10.2337/diacare.28.1.164


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