Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a condition in which the kidneys lose their ability to filter blood. The kidneys are two bean-shaped organs that are located just below the rib cage, on either side of the spine. They play a vital role in maintaining the body’s fluid balance and removing waste from the blood.
The most common cause of CKD is diabetes. Other causes include high blood pressure, glomerulonephritis, polycystic kidney disease, and a wide range of other diseases or conditions.
The Impact of Chronic Kidney Disease on the African American Community:
African Americans are disproportionately affected by chronic kidney disease. Black communities are more likely to suffer from chronic illness and have a lower life expectancy.
This is partly because African Americans tend to be more resistant to the progression of chronic kidney disease and thus live with it for a longer time.
Health Disparities Faced by (and Impacting) the African American Community:
The African American community faces several health disparities, with chronic illness being a major factor. This is a problem that affects not only the African American community but also the greater population. The prevalence of chronic illness in black communities has been linked to genetics and environmental factors and can be seen as a form of institutional racism.
In America, blacks are more likely to be diagnosed with heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and stroke than whites. They are also more likely to die from these diseases than whites. In addition to this, black mothers are three times as likely to die from pregnancy-related complications than white mothers. These disparities have led many people to believe that there is an inherent bias in the health care system against people who are members of the African American community.
Strategies for Reducing Risk Factors that Contribute to Chronic Kidney Disease in the African American Population:
In the United States, African Americans have a greater risk of developing chronic kidney disease than other populations. The risk factors for CKD in minority populations are not well understood, but some studies have identified that they may include high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity.
To reduce these risk factors, there needs to be an increase in education about the risks of CKD in minority populations. Additionally, there needs to be more research done on how these risk factors can be prevented and how this disease can be detected early on.
If you want to live a healthy life, then you must be aware of some of the habits that are damaging your kidneys.
Overusing Painkillers: Over-the-counter pain medicines, such as NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) and Analgesics, may alleviate your aches and pains, but they can harm the kidneys, especially if you already have kidney disease. NSAIDs block pain signals from your brain to your body, which can damage small blood vessels in the kidneys.
Frequent use of excessive salts: Diets high in salt are high in sodium, which can increase blood pressure and, in turn, harm your kidneys.
Eating Processed Foods: Processed foods are significant sources of sodium and phosphorus. Many people who have kidney disease need to limit phosphorus in their diets.
Not Drinking Enough Water: Staying well hydrated helps your kidneys clear sodium and toxins from the body. Drinking plenty of water is also one of the best ways to avoid painful kidney stones. Those with kidney problems or kidney failure may need to restrict their fluid intake, but for most people, drinking 1.5 to 2 liters (3 to 4 pints) of water per day is a healthy target.
Missing Out on Sleep: A good night’s rest is extremely important to your overall well-being and, it turns out, your kidneys. Kidney function is regulated by the sleep-wake cycle which helps coordinate the kidneys’ workload over 24 hours.
Eating too much meat: Eating too much meat can damage your kidney too. Animal protein is known to produce high amounts of acid in the blood which can be detrimental to the kidneys and cause acidosis. Acidosis is a condition in which the kidneys cannot remove acid fast enough.
Smoking: Smoking is harmful to your health which includes your kidneys. People who smoke are more susceptible to having protein in their urine, which is a sign of kidney damage
Excessive alcohol consumption: High alcohol intake may raise uric acid generation and damage your kidneys hence it is mandatory to cut down on alcohol intake.
California Kidney Specialists is one of the largest kidney care groups In Southern California with over 35 years of dedicated service & has a team of experienced nephrologists, kidney transplant specialists and kidney transplant surgeons in California.