March is National Kidney Month, a time when communities across the country raise awareness about kidney disease.
Listen as Dr. Laveta McDowell from the San Antonio Kidney Kerrville office discusses how sodium can affect high blood pressure and kidney disease on the Medical Minute from 92.3FM.
A high salt diet will alter this sodium balance, causing the kidneys to have reduced function and remove less water resulting in higher blood pressure. If you have chronic kidney disease (CKD), your kidneys can not remove excess salt and fluid so they build up in your body and can cause:
- High blood pressure
- Swelling of ankles, feet, hands, and puffiness under your eyes
- Shortness of breath
Foods high in salt or sodium include the following:
- Fast foods
- Canned, processed or packaged foods
- Frozen dinners
- Ready-to-eat boxed meals
- Sauces, salad dressings, marinades and condiments
- Cured or salted meats such as hot dogs, bacon, ham, lunch meats and sausage
- Salt including kosher salt and sea salt
- Beware of products with hidden/added sodium: Look for word “sodium” on ingredient list, such as monosodium glutamate (MSG) or sodium nitrate
Patients with high blood pressure (hypertension) and chronic kidney disease (CKD) often need to limit sodium or salt in their diet to keep their blood pressure under control and to prevent extra fluid from building up in the body and swelling.