Your kidneys work hard for you all year long, but this month we give them a little extra recognition and raise awareness about kidney disease for National Kidney Month. This year’s theme is all about taking charge of your health and what goes into managing your kidney disease.

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a serious condition that affects 37 million people; however, it is often overlooked until symptoms appear. This can put you at risk for serious health complications, including kidney failure, so it is important to know the ways to help manage and slow the progression of CKD.

Take charge of your kidney health by following these healthy lifestyle tips:

  1. Meet with your doctor regularly – this includes telehealth appointments!
  2. Work with your health care team to develop a plan to manage your blood pressure, and make sure you monitor your blood glucose levels if you have diabetes.
  3. Make sure you are taking all medicines, as prescribed by your doctors.
  4. Maintain a healthy weight – work with your nutritionist to develop a healthy (but still tasty!) meal plan that you’ll look forward to following.
  5. Reduce stress and incorporate physical activities into your daily routine – find activities that you enjoy that can help you manage stress and aim for 30 minutes of physical activity most days.
  6. Be sure you are giving your body the rest it needs – try for 7 to 8 hours a night.
  7. If you smoke, take steps to quit.

For more information on National Kidney Month and for additional tips and tools for kidney health, visit the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases’ website: