Chronic Kidney Disease, Diabetes and Heart Disease: How They’re Linked

While it may not get the attention of diabetes and heart disease, chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a major problem in the United States. It estimated that 15 percent of American adults have CKD, a figure that equates to 37 million people. Given the crucial role of the kidneys, it may not come as a surprise that CKD is linked to both diabetes and heart disease.

Hurting the Heart

Chronic kidney disease interferes with the kidney’s ability to expel waste and toxins from the bloodstream. In turn, this forces the heart to work harder than it normally would. This extra workload can take its toll on the heart organ, potentially leading to the onset of heart disease.

Conversely, having diabetes can serve as a risk factor for chronic kidney disease. The calling card of diabetes is high blood sugar levels, as the body is unable to move enough glucose from the bloodstream and into its cells. All of this excess blood sugar floating around can easily wear down and damage the kidneys. Eventually, all of this wear and tear can lead to a diagnosis of CKD.

This scenario is unfortunately a fairly often occurrence; it is believed that a third of adults with diabetes are also living with chronic kidney disease.

Keeping Your Body Safe

If you’re concerned about CKD, heart disease and diabetes, you can take certain steps to keep all three of these conditions at bay:

  • Lead an active lifestyle. You can start with relatively easy activities, such as walking, and move from there.
  • Eat and drink smart. Sugary foods and beverages should obviously be kept at a minimum. Instead, try to consume a steady diet of healthy items, including fruits and veggies.
  • If you’re a smoker, try to stop. This is easier said than done, but your body will thank you for it.

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