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Kidney Disease Prevention: What Measures Can a Senior Take?

Kidney disease has been on the rise among elderly Americans over the last few decades. As of 2013, research into the prevalence of senior kidney disease indicates more needs to be done in terms of prevention, particularly with help from relatives providing elderly care in Lancaster. Encourage your senior loved one to follow these tips.

Eat Healthier

As with other vital organs, the integrity of renal tissue and the function of the kidneys can be expected to diminish as part of the aging process. To a certain extent, chronic kidney disease cannot be fully prevented. However, acute kidney failure can be avoided with proper nutrition. If your loved one wants to prevent kidney disease through better eating, the National Institutes of Health recommends a diet known as Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH).

The DASH diet has a direct impact on high blood pressure, one of the leading causes of kidney disease. Some of the elements of this diet are fruits and vegetables, complex carbohydrates, low-fat dairy products, nuts, and legumes. Sodium is kept low by reducing salt intake, and a similar approach should be taken with regard to refined sugars. Your loved one should avoid canned foods because they tend to contain added salt, sweeteners, and other ingredients that are not conducive to healthy kidneys.

Get Tested

In addition to the DASH diet, your loved one should also monitor his or her urine for the presence of blood. Laboratory screening of blood and urine should be conducted to check for protein levels and for the rate of glomerular filtration, which forms the basis of kidney function testing.

Limit Alcohol Intake

The kidneys work overtime to filter the harmful substances found in alcoholic drinks. An occasional beer or a glass of wine is not considered excessive, but some seniors over the age of 65 should consider lowering their alcohol intake to just one or two drinks per month.

To learn more about kidney disease prevention, reach out to the senior home care experts at Home Care Assistance. We offer live-in and part-time care in Lancaster, and our caregivers can help with healthy meal prep, transportation to medical appointments, and much more. For more information on our senior care services and to schedule a complimentary consultation, call an experienced Care Manager at (717) 540-4663 today.