The Connection Between Obesity and Kidney Disease

We have a health crisis on our hands in the United States, one that promises to create a generation of children whose life expectancies are lower than those of their parents. According to the National Institutes of Health, at least 34% of the population of the United States is overweight and at least one-third of the population is considered obese. Combined, this makes up 70% of the population. The statistics for children and teens are roughly the same at 32% of this population considered overweight or obese. There is no doubt that this is a national health crisis, one that brings with it the possibilities of developing comorbid issues. As a nation, we spend over 140 billion dollars a year on obesity-related medical costs. On average, costs for patients who are obese are more than $1200 annually. When will we take back control over our health? When will you?

March is National Kidney Month and a great time to assess your health as it relates to the kidneys. According to the National Kidney Foundation, there are several risk factors for developing Chronic Kidney Disease, CKD. These include a family history of diabetes or a current diabetes diagnosis, heart disease, high blood pressure, and familial history of kidney problems. Other risk factors you should be aware of are your heritage, age, chronic urinary tract issues, kidney stones, and obesity. Did you know that overweight and obese patients are at risk for developing health issues such as kidney disease and failure?

If you fall into the overweight and obese categories, it is crucial that you speak with your healthcare provider and stay vigilant. CKD often goes undiagnosed until its end-stage which means that you may not know you have the condition until they have advanced.

Here are signs you should be on the lookout for:

  • Frequent need to urinate
  • Swollen areas of your body: hands, feet, face, abdominal region
  • Urine that is foamy
  • Challenging painful urination
  • Dark urine tinged with pink (a sign of blood within the urine)
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Weakness

The great news is that simple tests can check for any kidney malfunction and you can get them from your doctor with ease. A urine test will check for albumin-creatinine ratio and detects the amount of albumin, a protein, within the urine. A simple blood test will check the glomerular filtration rate and let your physician know how effectively your kidneys are filtering. Knowing your blood pressure is key as well because high numbers can be a sign of kidney problems.

Your weight represents more than a mere number on a scale. It can be indicative of future health problems. Now is the time to make a lasting change, and our team at Advanced Surgical and Weight Loss Institute would love to partner with you to make that happen. We offer bariatric surgery and counseling in Melbourne, FL. Contact our office today and let’s get you on the road to health and wellness.