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March is National Kidney Month: Take the pressure off

Updated: Feb 21

Did you know high blood pressure is the second leading cause of kidney failure in the U.S. after diabetes? If you have high blood pressure, you could be at risk for kidney disease, which can lead to stroke, heart attack, kidney failure and even death. But, there is good news! You can help protect your kidneys by adopting these 6 healthy lifestyle habits to help manage your high blood pressure:

  1. Take your prescribed medications. If your doctor has prescribed blood pressure-lowering medications, take them as directed. These medications can help lower the development of kidney disease.

  2. Make goals for a healthy weight. By losing even a small amount of weight, you can help improve your blood pressure.

  3. Make healthier food choices. By selecting healthier food and beverage options like vegetables, lean meant, and whole grains, you can improve your overall health.

  4. If you smoke, try quitting.

  5. Get the recommended amount of sleep.The average adult needs 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Try to go to bed earlier to increase the amount of sleep you get each night.

  6. Add physical activity to your routine and find ways to manage your stress. At least 30 minutes of exercise each day not only improves your health but can help reduce your stress as well.

If you suffer from kidney problems talk to your Primary Care Provider about a consult with Memorial Hospital’s Specialty Clinic provider, Dr. Randall Cowart, Nephrologist. Dr. Cowart has more than 30 years of experience in nephrology and internal medicine. He has been a part of the Memorial Hospital specialty staff since 2003 and is also affiliated with many hospitals in Southern Illinois. His primary practice, Kidney Disease and Medicine Specialty Consultants, is located in Carbondale, IL. Dr. Cowart holds outpatient clinics at Memorial Hospital once a month on Fridays. To learn more about Memorial’s Specialty Clinic at 618-826-4581 ext. 1366.

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