Published on November 22nd, 2019 | by Michaelw0
New patients guide to kidney disease
This video is a straight-to-the-point, no-frills and no buzzwords 6 steps guide to lower creatinine levels naturally and to improve kidney function.
I’ve been having a lot of requests of this kind lately on the channel
Like this one
Hello I need help to improve my kidney function. I am only 19 years old and have CKD. My function is at 39%. I need help to control my blood pressure.
And another one
What’s good to supplements or natural item to lower creatinine levels?
Or this one
I have just been diagnosed with CKD my GFR is 45 my creatinine is 3.5 what do I do? Please I’m scared
Ok, don’t be scared, I’m here to help.
Today I’m making a video for all those people that maybe have been diagnosed recently or that have just entered a new stage and are overwhelmed with symptoms or complications or some new dietary restriction.
So this guide is going to be as easy as possible, especially to help all those people watching me that really don’t know where-to-start-from to improve their kidney function.
There will be just 6, very easy, steps that anyone with kidney disease can start to follow
so let’s start immediately with the guide
Our very first step is…
Don’t let the fear stop you from fighting for a better kidney health.
It is normal to be scared when you have to face a life threatening illness.
Especially when the first thing that so many doctors tell their patients is that kidney disease can go in just one direction: from bad to worse.
Yes, I’ve met countless patients with doctors that only told them to wait for things to get worse or that there’s nothing that they can do.
No information were given, no treatment options were chosen and there was no hope at all.
Yes, too often doctors don’t tell their patients how to manage kidney disease, how to follow a proper renal diet and what treatments can help lowering creatinine levels.
Because, they say, there’s no way to improve things when the kidneys have been impaired for too long.
But is this true?
I’ll put this in a very direct way: there are ways to beat kidney disease and I’ve seen people doing it.
I’ll read you just one more comment here on 00kidney very quickly
As many of you, when I was diagnosed with CKD I was scared. I asked my doctor how much this was going to limit my life span.
He smiled and replied Put it this way, I have patients in their 80s who still have useful kidney function.
I did not expect that. I could not have imagined that he had just given me the best medicine possible. Hope. He planted a seed. He also gave me the belief that anything is possible.
So I started to do researches online, I improved my renal diet and I started to work with my doctor and dietitian to improve my treatment.
And now I’m not just more confident that I will live a long life, I’ve also seen the first improvement in my blood tests in years.
Although my body has CKD, I am still me. I choose to be the best version of me. I make the time to be conscious of my health and wellbeing.
Thank you for this comment, it was really inspiring.
Now, what I read here is that it took her some really hard work to get there,
getting back some kidney function and seeing some improvement is a really great and important result.
So, in my opinion, it is worth some hard work, right?
So if you know anyone that could benefit from a boost of hope in their fight to beat kidney disease, send them this video now so you can help them.
Because people can actually improve their renal function and lower their creatinine levels. Remember, you are not alone, so never lose hope.
Step 2 of 6 to start lowering creatinine level:
lower your protein intake
I told you this was gonna be and easy guide, right?
This is a very simple tip that almost ever patient can use to lower their creatinine levels easily but that not everyone knows.
So lower your protein intake. But why?
Now protein is a challenging one… everyone loves a good steak at least once in a while.
But protein, especially if coming from animals, is really hard on the kidneys.
Actually, excess of protein in the diet can directly increase creatinine levels.
Cooked red meat seems to be particularly troublesome. Red meat is the muscle tissue of the animal, which naturally contains CREATINE.
Cooking this meat causes the CREATINE to break down into creatinine, so when a person eats the meat, their creatinine levels will rise and their kidneys will have to work more.
That’s why people who regularly consume large quantities of protein may have higher creatinine levels.
So you may want to start adding more plant-based protein and to reduce the amount of red meat and dairy products you consume.
It is so much easier for your body to digest plant based protein and they put a lot less stress on the kidneys.
And that’s what we’re trying to do here, putting less stress on your kidneys so they have time to heal and to get better.
Another very very easy tip to improve kidney function is increasing dietary fiber.
Yes, fiber may be beneficial for people to reduce their creatinine levels.
Many plant foods, including fruits, vegetables, seeds, and whole grains contain fiber.
So start adding more of these to your diet and remove some red meat.
So eat more food that won’t create so much waste that’s left in your blood system and that makes you sick.
No, I’m not talking about going vegan here, that’s not the point. You don’t need a diet so extreme.
It’s more about balancing better meat and plant based foods.
Now, ideally all patients with kidney disease should follow a renal diet specifically made for them.
Unfortunately, this is not always the case and a lot of people leave their doctors office without enough information.
Now, if this describes you, don’t worry.
Keep getting informed and start planning a good renal diet that suits you with your doctor. More on this later.
the 4 Life-Saving Tests
I know that blood tests reports can be complex and difficult to decipher for the patient.
Especially when we start to see terms like maybe Hemoglobin, Blood Urea Nitrogen, Hematocrit…
But do you really need, as a patient, to be able to understand ALL the numbers and values on your test?
you just need to do the 4 Life-Saving Tests.
Let’s see what they are
first test, Blood pressure.
Why should you do this test? High blood pressure is the second-leading cause of kidney failure after diabetes. But it’s not just that.
High blood pressure can cause kidney damage and kidney damage can cause high blood pressure.
Yes, it’s a vicious circle, if left untreated.
So it’s very important to keep blood pressure always under control.
What are the good scores for this test?
Below 140/90 is good for most people.
Below 130/80 is better if you have chronic kidney disease.
Below 120/80 is best.
Now, this is a test you can even do at home, with a very simple device.
Second test is protein in the urine.
Why is this important? Protein in the urine is the very first symptom of kidney disease for a lot of patients.
Unfortunately not everyone gets checked for this regularly or their doctors don’t pay enough attention to a test that could save so many lives.
So, if you don’t have kidney disease but you are at risk for it, maybe because of diabetes or high blood pressure or a family history of kidney disease, get checked and pay close attention to Albumin.
What are the good scores for this test? Less than 30 mg of albumin per gram of urinary creatinine.
If you have more than this, it’s a sign of kidney damage.
Third test is Serum Creatinine, or creatinine in blood.
This is one of the main indicators of kidney function.
You should know what your creatinine are if you want to know about your kidney health.
Healthy kidneys filter creatinine (a waste product from muscle activity) out of the blood. When kidney function is reduced, creatinine levels rise.
So, what’s a good score for this test? Normal levels of creatinine in the blood are approximately 0.6 to 1.2 milligrams per deciliter in adult males and 0.5 to 1.1 milligrams per deciliter in adult females.
Now, when these levels rise, it means that kidney function is decreasing.
Creatinine levels can tell you how much kidney function you still have.
The forth and most important life-saving test is glomerular filtration rate, or GFR.
GFR is the most sensitive and accurate gauge of kidney function. Doctors measure blood creatinine levels and perform a calculation based on age, race, and gender.
Now, if you have GFR lower than 60 for more than 3 months, it means that you have chronic kidney disease.
So always remember to do these 4 life-saving tests regularly
Step 4 of 6:
Do not take over-the-counter pills on a regular basis
Drugs such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory are known to cause lifelong lasting kidney damage if taken regularly.
We are talking about very common drugs like ibuprofen, naproxen… even aspirin can cause damage.
They are proven to cause up to 5% of chronic kidney disease new cases every year.
And I know that many people will say… oh my god I take that for my migraines or for my PMS…
So, listen… I used to take them too. It’s not the end of the world.
Today, use of NSAIDs has become more common than ever. Some people are used to take Aspirin, Ibuprofen or Naproxen at the slightest symptom of a headache or fever.
Me too. I thought that it was a completely harmless habit.
Now, after reading all those papers about the correlation between NSAIDs and CKD, after getting informed a little bit better about NSAIDs and what they do to your body, I can tell you that… it’s a lot better to avoid them.
Especially if your kidneys are already damaged, NSAIDs are nephrotoxic, meaning that they can cause further damage.
So taking an ibuprofen or an aspirin regularly should be avoided by everyone, but especially by kidney patients.
By the way it’s always recommended to take analgesics at the lowest dose and for the shortest time possible.
They should never be taken to manage chronic pain and should never be taken daily or for long amounts of time. Talk to your health care provider if you are taking them.
Step 5 of 6
be sure to have a good kidney specialist
Do you trust your doctor? Would you trust your doctor with your own life? This is NOT a rhetorical question.
I often talk about the relationship between doctors and their patients here because that’s something that can make all the difference in the world when it comes to the health of your kidneys.
Yet having a good doctor by your side, helping you in your journey to a better kidney health is as important as undervalued by many.
And I’ve talked to so many patients complaining about the job their doctor did with them that I’ve lost count.
Well, first of all do everything you can to improve or maintain your relationship with your doctor.
A good patient doctor relationship is based on good communication.
Communication with your doctor begins the moment they enter the exam room.
Appropriate diagnosis and treatment depend on your ability to share your symptoms and concerns, along with their ability to listen.
Research suggests that patients who ask questions, voice concerns and are actively engaged during physician visits have better medical outcomes.
So from your next exam, tell your doctor if you have any doubt or if you don’t know why is prescribing you this or that medication.
Interestingly, many patients report that having the full attention and focus of their physician is more important than time spent.
The importance of a good doctor-patient relationship cannot be overstated.
Studies show that patients who respect and trust their doctor are more likely to provide the doctor with important health information which in turn will help the doctor treating them better.
So, try to improve your communication with your doctor and your patient doctor relationship as much as you can.
Now, not all doctors are good doctors and not all relationship can work.
There are even people too scared to talk to their doctors.
In some cases, these are patients who already had a bad experience, or suffered from a medical error or even some form of medical malpractice.
I can only imagine how much of a damage this can do to the mental health of a patient. Imagine losing the trust in the people supposed to treat you. The shock and fear can be daunting.
What can you do in these cases?
Maybe, for some people the only solution is to find a new doctor.
I know, I know, this may look extreme. But for some people, In some cases, this is the only answer.
But remember that this is an area when you just cannot afford to make a mistake.
So don’t be afraid to ask for help and take your time.
And the step number 6, maybe the most important one is…
Keep getting informed
Yes, information is power, especially when it come to your own health.
I’ve tried to be as concise as possible with today’s guide and I really hope that I was able to give you enough information to know where to start.
But this is only the beginning, so keep getting informed and keep following me here on 00kidney.
This is all for today, thank you for watching.