Humans are beings who follow routines. We normally go about our lives with more or less no change between one day and the next. Therefore, it’s easy to assume that our daily habits have an impact on how are body functions and how well it can respond to or prevent certain diseases. Some make a more immediate effect while others take their time in doing some serious harm to our bodies and our most important organs. One such organ which can be greatly affected, both in the short and long term, is our kidney. Our kidneys constitute an important filtering system which helps us get rid of unnecessary waste our bodies produce on a daily basis. With that in mind, there are some habits we should pay close attention to and reconsider if we want to avoid one of the most annoying and painful illnesses out there: kidney stones. Joe Cosgrove would like to share some thoughts on which habits are more prone to create kidney stones and what we should do balance them out.
1 . Caffeine, caffeine, caffeine!!
It’s quite normal to drink a cup of coffee in the morning, have a cola during lunch, and/or drink some tea in the evening. It’s actually a part of many people’s lifestyle. There’s just one catch. All those beverages have caffeine. While they may be good to give you a quick pick-me-up, they are also quite good at forming kidney stones. Turns out, the stimulation caused by caffeine could lead your body (and your kidneys) to exhort itself beyond what it can handle. That exhaustion will lead to calcium build-up in your urine and that, dear friend, increases the chances of getting calcium stones. So, what should you do? Lay off a little on caffeine products, or go for some decaf. You don’t need to stop drinking what you like, it’s just a matter of moderation.
2 . Being a couch potato
Filters will only work if they are put to work. Sounds obvious, but sometimes we forget the obvious. Exercise and physical activity help our kidneys control our bodies fluids so that they can leave our system and take any unwanted waste along with them. This one is pretty clear and concise: the more sedentary you are, the higher the risk of getting kidney stones. Therefore, you should exercise at least three or four times a week. Start slow until you reach about an hour per session. And don’t forget to hydrate with plenty of water. Failure to get enough water in your system before doing exercise will force your kidneys to work overtime and that will also lead to kidney stones in the future.
3. Holding it in
This is one of the most common and most damaging habits we can have when it comes to kidney stones. There’s a reason nature calls on us. Every time we urinate, we are getting rid of excess minerals and waste our body doesn’t need. When you hold it in for long periods of time or on a constant basis, you are allowing that waste to build up in your bladder and your kidneys and with time it could all come together and form kidney stones. The solution is quite simple, fool proof even. Go to the bathroom whenever nature calls! No fuss in that.
We often like to think that we know how to treat minor aches and illnesses without having to see a doctor. A headache can be calmed with X or Y pill. Same goes for backaches and others. We assume that we know what a doctor will prescribe so we just avoid the middleman. Or even worse, we’ll ask our local pharmacist for his thoughts on what over-the-counter medicine he or she recommends. Well, thing is, you may be asking for a doctor’s appointment to treat kidney stones if you keep up the self-medication. There are a number of over-the-counter and prescription drugs which could promote kidney stone formation which you never knew about. If you want to lower the risk, make sure your physician gives you the green light to self-medicate.
As you can see, getting kidney stones is relatively easy. It’s necessary to be aware of how significant or present the previous habits are in our lives. Learning to moderate some of them and controlling others will prove to be very beneficial in the long run. To sum up, you should start paying attention to four habits:
- Caffeine intake during the day.
- Leading a sedentary lifestyle.
- Not going to the bathroom when your body lets you know.
- Thinking you are a doctor and self-medicating.
If you’re interested in learning more on how to avoid kidney stones or if you’d like to follow up on the state of wearable kidneys, don’t hesitate to keep coming back to Joe Cosgrove’s blog.
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