Kidneys are a pair of bean-shaped organs on either side of your spine, below your ribs and behind your belly. Each kidney is about 4 or 5 inches long, roughly the size of a large fist. The kidneys’ job is to filter your blood. Each day, the kidneys filter several liters of urine, waste and excess fluid to prevent the accumulation of waste in the body.
The kidneys maintain stable electrolyte levels and produce hormones that help regulate blood pressure, produce red blood cells, and maintain bone strength. Healthy kidneys are essential for the proper functioning of the whole body. Kidney damage can often go unnoticed, so it’s important to take preventative measures to keep your kidneys healthy.
Below are eight common habits that put significant pressure on your kidneys and can lead to serious kidney damage over time;
1. Withholding Urine
It may sound strange, but almost everyone does it. The impulse often comes during a car ride, in the middle of a phone call or when there is no toilet nearby. Regular retention of urine increases the pressure, which can lead to kidney failure.
2. Consuming Too Much Alcohol
Consuming too much alcohol does not only harm the kidney, but also the liver. Most people consume a glass of wine or a beer here and there, but several drinks a week can increase the risk of kidney damage. Alcohol puts the kidneys and the liver to the test.
3. Not Drinking Enough Water
One of the important functions of the kidneys is to filter the blood and eliminate toxins and wastes that can harm the body. When you do not drink enough water, these toxins and wastes begin to accumulate, causing serious damage.
4. Consuming Too Much Coffee
Coffee contains caffeine and caffeine can increase blood pressure and stress the kidneys, just like salt. Over time, excessive consumption of coffee (or caffeine, such as energy drinks) can damage the kidneys.
5. Consuming Too Much Of Salt
The body needs sodium to function properly, but excess sodium can cause damage. Most people consume too much, which can increase blood pressure and stress the kidneys.
6. Depriving Yourself Of Sleep
Chronic sleep deprivation is linked to many health problems, including kidney disease. The body works while sleeping to repair damaged kidney tissue. Therefore, depriving the body of sleep makes healing more difficult and this will affect your kidney.
7. Consuming Too Much Protein Of Animal
Consuming an excess of animal protein (especially red meat) increases the metabolic load on the kidneys. The more animal protein you consume, the more your kidneys have to work hard, which can cause stress and kidney damage.
8. Abuse Of Painkillers
Over-the-counter medications and prescription medications are commonly prescribed to relieve pain without worrying about the harmful side effects that can result. Excessive or abusive use of analgesics can lead to serious kidney and liver damage.