URINE TESTING: THE SIMPLE WAY TO KEEP YOU AND YOUR KIDNEYS HEALTHY

Your urine is probably not something you think about often. But it’s actually the easiest and most effective way to catch the start of kidney damage. Like with other diseases, early detection is the key to reducing your risk of progressing to permanent kidney disease or kidney failure. This opportunity for prevention is even more important because early kidney disease has no signs or symptoms. Symptoms show up only after permanent damage has already occurred.

Urine testing is quick, easy, and non-invasive. It is low cost and is generally covered by insurance. It is used to detect protein in the urine, which is not normal. Your kidneys have tiny filters which usually do not allow protein to pass through them. If protein is present in the urine this may indicate that they are damaged. Your healthcare provider will follow up if you do have protein in your urine. There may be other causes so kidney damage will need to be confirmed with further testing.

The good news is that even if you have protein in your urine, there are many things you can do to stop it. Changes in diet and lifestyle habits, along with the right medications and treatment plan, can either stop or slow the progression of kidney disease! This is especially important for people who are already at risk to develop kidney disease, namely people with diabetes and/or high blood pressure, family history of kidney disease, and people over 60 years old.

So remember…

  • Early kidney disease has no signs or symptoms. The only way to know if you have kidney disease is to first have your urine tested for albumin.
  • Kidney disease does not go away. It may get worse over time and can lead to kidney failure. If your kidneys fail, you may need to go on dialysis or have a kidney transplant.
  • Kidney disease can be treated. The sooner you know you have kidney disease, the sooner you can get treatment to help delay or prevent kidney failure. Treating kidney disease may also help prevent heart disease.
  • Discuss urine testing with your healthcare provider, or find one of NKF’s Keep Healthy events, where you can receive free urine testing and much more!

Go Red for Women in February

Women are strong. Women are smart. Women solve problems. Women can do anything men can do. And, there are some things we’re even better at – dying of heart disease and stroke. Like breaking barriers? Go Red! And help break the one against heart disease.

It’s not just a man’s disease. Each year, 1 in 3 women die of heart disease and stroke. But we can change that because 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented with education and lifestyle changes.

When it comes to beating heart disease and stroke, change can be the cure. To save lives and raise awareness of this serious issue, the American Heart Association launched Go Red For Women. And the red dress has become the iconic symbol of our battle against heart disease and stroke in women.

National Wear Red Day® — the first Friday each February — is our special day to bring attention to this staggering fact. We encourage everyone to wear red, raise their voices, know their cardiovascular risk and take action to live longer, healthier lives.

A Decade of Success

Since the first National Wear Red Day in 2003, we’ve made tremendous strides in the fight against heart disease and stroke in women. Through research and education to healthy lifestyle changes, we’re proud that:

  • Nearly 90% have made at least one healthy behavior change.
  • More than one-third has lost weight.
  • More than 50% have increased their exercise.
  • 6 out of 10 have changed their diets.
  • More than 40% have checked their cholesterol levels.
  • One third has talked with their doctors about developing heart health plans.
  • Today, nearly 300 fewer women die from heart disease and stroke each day
  • Death in women has decreased by more than 30 percent over the past 10 years.

 

More Work is Crucial

Yet, with all these successes, 1 in 3 women die of heart disease and stroke each year,. But what’s more powerful? Millions of mothers, sisters, daughters and friends making a change.

More than ever, your financial contributions help save women’s lives. Funds raised by Go Red support educational programs to increase women’s awareness about their risk for heart disease and stroke as well as critical research to discover scientific knowledge about cardiovascular health.

We deeply appreciate all of your support. We wouldn’t be where we are without you. But we have more to accomplish.

Get involved. Go Red by telling other women that 1 in 3 women die of heart disease and stroke, yet it is 80% preventable. Make a change.

Article cited from https://www.goredforwomen.org/

5 Goals to Losing Weight

To lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you eat. Every good weight-loss plan has the same two parts: food and physical activity. Wise food choices can help you eat fewer calories and daily (or almost daily) physical activity helps you burn off some of the calories you consume. You lose weight more easily and you’re more likely to keep it off, too.

  1. Keep portions smaller than your fist. It’s easy to overeat when you have too much food on your plate. Smaller portions help prevent overeating. Overeating can make health problems worse, especially if you have diabetes. One way to control overeating is to reduce portion sizes when you eat. For most foods, a reasonable portion is ½ to 1 cup – about the size of a woman’s fist. Even if your fist is larger than that, it is still a handy measuring tool that goes everywhere you go. Just keep your portions smaller than your fist. See our Suggested Servings from Each Food Group and Healthier Kids portion sizes. Not all foods fit the “fist” rule.
  2. The two most common exceptions are:
  • Lean meat, chicken and fish. For these foods, keep portions the size of a deck of cards (about half the size of your fist) and trim all visible fats before cooking.
  • Plain vegetables, including salads without dressing. You can have as much as you want because these foods are nutritious, filling and low in calories.
  1. Control your hunger with filling foods that are low in calories. Foods such as lower-sodium soup, salad, fruits and vegetables can help fill you up without adding a lot of calories. These foods will satisfy hunger and help you lose weight. Research shows that people feel less hungry when they eat a certain volume (amount) of food. High-fiber foods, such as fruits and vegetables, can provide a feeling of fullness and also digest slowly. That helps you feel satisfied longer so you eat less.
  2. Keep track of what you eat. When you keep track of what you eat, you’re more likely to meet your food goals. Studies show that keeping a food log or diary helps people lose weight and keep it off.
  3. Make trade-offs to reduce how much sodium, saturate and trans fat and sugar you eat. Foods high in fat and sugar are often high in calories, too. But that doesn’t mean you have to give up your favorite foods. Learn to make trade-offs instead. If you want to indulge in your favorite dessert, enjoy a smaller portion and eat a lower-calorie meal.
  4. Enjoy more physical activity. As you already know, regular physical activity is important for keeping your heart healthy. Increasing physical activity may help you lose weight and strengthen your heart at the same time.

If you feel you need extra support to lose weight, look for a weight-loss program that’s been proven safe and successful.

Look for a program that:

  • Stresses a healthy eating plan (low in saturated fat, trans fat, added sugar and sodium, with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean poultry, meat and fish, and fat-free or low-fat dairy).
  • Includes daily physical activity.
  • Gives you personal support from a group, buddy or dietitian.
  • Does not deprive you of the foods you enjoy.
  • Has a system to help you keep track of what you eat and drink.
  • Recommends a gradual weight loss of 1 to 2 pounds per week until a healthy weight is reached.
  • If you’re insulin-dependent, does not conflict with your diabetic diet. Talk to your doctor or diabetes educator if you have questions.
  • Includes a maintenance program for keeping off weight.

Beat it, orange, grapefruit and apple juice—there’s a new drink in town, and it’s just what the doctor (um, personal trainer) ordered.

In a study at the University of Exeter in England, cyclists who consumed up to half a liter of beet juice daily for six days completed workouts faster than those who didn’t drink it, and it took them longer to reach fatigue. “Beet juice contains nitrates that your body converts into nitric oxide, which expands your blood vessels and can lead to more oxygen being delivered to your muscles as you exercise,” explains Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, chair of the department of nutrition sciences at Drexel University in Philadelphia. “This can make it easier for you to go faster and harder for greater amounts of time.”

 

The 6 Golden Rules Of A Healthy Grocery Cart

*By Kristin Kirkpatrick for U.S. News | article cited from Huffington Post

I like to think of myself as a fairly non-judgmental kind of girl. The problem is, when I’m waiting in the grocery store checkout line, that persona goes out the store’s sliding doors. As I wait for my turn, I find myself examining the contents of others’ carts, and sometimes — dare I say — I judge.

If I see a basket of cookies and cola, for example, I have to resist the urge to turn around and ask, “Why?” The same is true when I see a family wheeling a full cart — without a single vegetable or fruit. Most frustrating, though, is when I see what appears to be a well-intentioned attempt at healthiness that falls short, like a mom who buys a super sugary breakfast bar for her child, believing the claim it contains “real” fruit.

I wish I didn’t have these thoughts; I wish I didn’t even look. But I’ll chalk it up to my job and knowing that the food we choose to put in our bodies has a direct impact on our weight and disease status. Fortunately, the thoughts that go through my head stay there and never come out to a fellow shopper. I thought it was time to put these thoughts on paper.

I can’t blame my fellow shoppers: The grocery store is one of the most deceptive places out there, filled with confusing and oftentimes misleading front-of-package claims that trick people into thinking their food choices are healthy when in fact, they’re not. The store is also filled with tempting foods and lots of them. You might have 30 varieties of ice cream or 40 types of frozen dinners. It’s not the fault of the grocery store, either — it simply carries the items, and many stores today are pushing healthier options. That’s why it’s truly up to all of us to make the right choices. Here’s your simple guide to the best cart possible:  Click Here to Read More…

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