Don’t Let It Happen to You

Acute Kidney injury kills more people than heart attacks according to a study published in PLoS Medicine 2014, online February

This Australian study found that more than 50,000 Australians are diagnosed each year with an “acute kidney attack” which can be rapidly fatal.

The study examined 1058 patients with acute kidney injury requiring hospital treatment. After 3 months, 810 patients survived and 552 survived to 4 years.  Forty percent of survivors continued to show kidney damage at follow up with high levels of protein in their urine tests.

Acute kidney damage can take up to several days to diagnose and has a wide range of symptoms. A lack of urine volume is the most obvious.

What are the causes of acute kidney injury?

  • Infections that are poorly controlled
  • Sudden drop in blood pressure and dehydration
  • Some surgical procedures especially with excess bleeding
  • Some drugs
  • X-ray contrast fluid that is injected during X –rays to visualise organs – these adverse reactions account for more than 10% of acute kidney attacks. You can ask to avoid these types of dyes during procedures if you prefer.
  • Diabetics and the elderly are more vulnerable to acute kidney damage

I recommend you ask your doctor to check your kidney function at least every 12 months. Make sure your fluid intake is adequate – water, raw vegetable juices, tea either regular or herbal, are all suitable beverages. Coffee is fine, but it is not hydrating, it is a diuretic. Avoid sugary drinks and chemical artificial sweeteners.  Minimize intake of pain killers if possible.

I pick up sluggish kidney function in quite a few unsuspecting patients and this is indicated by the combination of low eGfr and elevated creatinine and/or urea in a routine blood chemistry test. The most common cause is that they do not drink enough healthy fluids. Vitamin C is essential for healthy kidneys so make sure you eat fresh citrus fruits, capsicums and tomatoes.

I highly recommend raw vegetable juicing to rejuvenate the kidneys. Raw juicing saved the life of my grandmother in the 1930s when her kidneys failed acutely and unexpectedly. In those days we did not have the luxury of dialysis. You will learn a lot of great health information in my recently updated book RAW JUICES CAN SAVE YOUR LIFE – an A to Z guide of diseases