Published on September 18th, 2020 | by Michaelw0
The kidney vitamin
In this video: 3 easy and natural ways to get more Vitamin D and give your kidneys the health boost they need.
Vitamin D is often called the sun vitamin, but I think it should be called the KIDNEY vitamin.
Yes, this vitamin is vital for you because, and many people don’t know this, but almost 80% of kidney disease patients have insufficient levels of Vitamin D.
This can cause severe consequences.
Now the good news: there are 3, fast and easy ways to get more vitamin D naturally and the benefits for your kidney function will be immediately noticeable!
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Let’s get immediately to the point because this is an important topic.
Let’s see what happens when you don’t get enough vitamin d.
Ok, as we can see in this slide, there are dozens of possible symptoms in case of a deficiency of vitamin D.
And many of these will also happen in case of a mild insufficiency.
fatigue, bone, back and muscle pain, but also hair loss are very common if you don’t get enough of this nutrient.
Vitamin D is also needed by the immune system, so regular sickness or infection and impaired wound healing are listed as symptoms.
But also low mood and in some cases depression. Yes, all these problems for a single vitamin.
A vitamin of which 80% of people with kidney disease have insufficient levels.
Now, there is even a list of serious complications that happen when Vitamin D deficiency continues for long periods.
Cardiovascular conditions, autoimmune problems, neurological diseases and cancer.
These are not very common because when people with risk factors start to break their bone too easily, they usually get tested for vitamin d deficiency.
Especially those with risk factors.
The elderly, people living in higher latitudes, people with darker skin color, and people with obesity.
And, also, people with kidney problems, since the kidneys convert this vitamin in the active form needed by the body.
So, if you are in one of these groups and have bone problems, if you break your bones even with small accidents, your doctor should immediately test you for a vitamin D deficiency.
But also, you may want to get checked for vitamin D if you have kidney problems and other risk factors. There’s a blood test for vitamin D deficiency that can be done to assess the problem.
Consider also that vitamin D deficiency is more frequent in people following a plant based diet. Yes, one of the healthiest diet for kidney patients.
This happens because most of the best sources of this nutrient are animal-based.
Now, on the bright side, when you start getting more of this vitamin, you can get several benefits, including a better immunity, lower risk of depression and an improvement in kidney function.
Research also suggests that vitamin D could play a role in the prevention and treatment of a number of different conditions, including type1 and type 2 diabetes, hypertension, glucose intolerance, and multiple sclerosis.
Yes, your kidney health can get a serious boost from this vitamin.
So, let’s see immediately what the 3 ways to get more vitamin D are.
First of all, there’s food.
The best sources of vitamin D are, well, many foods you cannot eat if you have kidney disease.
Like milk and cheese. people with kidney problems are usually told to avoid dairy altogether, for the phosphorus and sodium content.
But, actually there could be a way.
There are couple of cheese options that may even have health benefits.
For example, brie. Which is lower in sodium and phosphorus than many other types of cheese and it’s a good source of vitamin D too.
Brie can be a part of a renal diet with enough portion control.
But also goat cheese and cheddar.
But you don’t want to rely on cheddar and brie to get enough vitamin D.
And, as always, consult your doctor or dietitian if you are on a renal diet and you want to add a new food.
But there are also several foods you can have with more frequency than cheese here.
For example, mushrooms, especially shiitake mushrooms, completely suitable for a kidney diet and also rich in vitamin D2.
Vitamin D2 is not as good for you as the vitamin D3 you would get from animal source foods, but this doesn’t make mushrooms less healthy.
Actually, I always recommend considering shiitake mushrooms as a part of a healthy diet. They have other benefits for you beside the vitamins content.
Also, consider eggs. Especially the yolk.
And I know that many people don’t want to eat egg yolks for the cholesterol content.
But, unless you already have high blood cholesterol, eggs are actually healthy for a renal diet, if eaten in moderation.
And yolks are a great source of Vitamin D3, the active form.
Just like fatty fish.
Maybe the best food sources of Vitamin D is fatty fish.
And that’s great, because fatty fish is also a great source of Omega 3 fatty acids and probably the healthiest protein source for a renal diet.
Halibut, is particularly rich in vitamin D, but also mackerel, tuna and herring. So, there’s one more reason to eat these foods regularly.
Now, if you are following a vegan diet, you won’t be able to find many Vitamin D rich foods, unfortunately.
Excluding mushrooms, the only vegan foods containing vitamin D in significant amounts are those artificially fortified with it.
But you may also consider the next source of vitamin D, maybe the most important.
Second source of Vitamin D, the sun.
Now, vitamin D from the sun is on a league of its own.
Careful sun exposure is as powerful as a medicine.
Sunlight can help you avoid depression more than vitamin D alone. But it may also improve your sleep quality, boost your immunity and improve your metabolism.
There are even studies suggesting that sun exposure may even lower blood pressure in people with hypertension.
Also, the vitamin D you get from the sun is the active form: Vitamin D3, the one you need.
Yes, getting more sun exposure may be the way to get the kidney health boost you need.
Especially if you can combine getting more sun with getting more active.
Now, before you go running wild outdoors,
there’s a controversy going on about sun exposure and the risk of skin cancer.
QUESTION, is the vitamin D from sunlight exposure worth the skin cancer risk?
Too much unprotected exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can cause skin damage, skin burn and may increase the risk for skin cancer.
So, is it worth it?
Well, I can’t tell you that I have the answer to the sun controversy.
But, and this is just my opinion, if you want to prioritize your kidney health, the sun may be your ally.
First because you don’t really need a lot of sun exposure to get the job done, 10-15 minutes of sun exposure a few times a week may be the sweet spot.
Also, there’s sunscreen. You should apply sunscreen every 2 hours with a good, broad spectrum sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher when you’re sunbathing.
And there are also a couple of bad habits you can avoid to limit the risk of skin cancer while getting good, healthy vitamin D3 from the sun.
First of all,
But avoid tanning machines.
There are two kinds of UV rays. UVA and UVB. It’s the UVB rays that interact with a protein in the skin to create sweet vitamin D3, already activated and ready.
Tanning beds, on the other hand, mostly emit UVA rays, which won’t improve your vitamin D level. But can increase cancer risk.
Also, you don’t need to get tanned. Not at all. If you’re tanning, you are already getting more sun exposure than you need.
And, while you can’t overdose on vitamin D from the sun, your skin won’t be particularly happy.
Well, as for many things in life, getting the right dose may be the most important part here.
Now, getting sun exposure is even more important if you live in higher latitudes, when getting enough sunlight during the year is more difficult.
And, if food and sun aren’t enough, the third option is taking a supplement.
Supplementation with special active vitamin D, called vitamin D3 is the best choice for all those who can’t get enough vitamin D from foods and sun exposure.
Now, before considering supplements remember that the two previous options are the best ones.
And also, that you need a supplement of vitamin D3, or cholecalciferol.
This is the active form of the vitamin.
Also, if you want to buy this vitamin as a supplement, be very careful with the dosage.
Many brands have dosages of 2000 IU and even 5000 IU and that’s way too much for kidney disease patients.
There’s even the chance of facing kidney damage when taking doses above 5000 IU for extended periods of time.
Remember that not always more of a good thing means more benefits.
Recent studies found out that daily doses of 700-1000 IU/day are to be preferred.
And obviously, only use the vitamin supplement approved by your doctor or dietitian.
If your doctor has not prescribed you a vitamin supplement, ask if you could benefit from taking one.
You can find these vitamins on Amazon, if you want.
Also, on my website newhopeforkidneypatients.com I’m maintaining a list of the most useful supplements for kidney patients.
But, again, keep supplements as a last resort.
it’s clear in my opinion that getting a good combination of vitamin D from the sun and the diet is the best course of action.
We know now that vitamin D is crucial to repair your kidneys, so make good use of this knowledge.
And, as always prioritize your health and keep taking good care of your kidneys.
Ok guys, this is all for today.
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Thank you for watching!