New Treatment That Chronic Kidney Disease Patients Can Do To Significantly Reduce Mortality Rates

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In About 31% of adult Americans have hypertension, but the numbers are far more dramatic for those with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) which affects 80%. Although most patients begin taking blood pressure lowering medication when they start on dialysis, 60% of Hemodialysis (HD) and 30% of Peritoneal Dialysis (PD) patients still struggle with high blood pressure. Additionally, hypertension (high blood pressure) was found to develop in 60% to 80% of CKD patients after Kidney Transplantation. High blood pressure in those with CKD can be very dangerous and lead to increased risk of Cardiovascular Disease, stroke, Kidney Transplant failure and death. However, there are a few simple things that you can do to bring your  blood pressure numbers into line. Though you should abide by the tried-and-true measures such as eliminating salt, eating the right fruits and vegetables and working out, you will likely find these very simple but lesser known recommendations even easier and as effective. 

Recommended Reading: Newly Recommended Changes To "Normal" Blood Pressure For CKD Patients To Avoid Risk of Mortality 

A recent study found that nonalcoholic red wine lowers blood pressure after 4 weeks. Dr. Nieca Goldberg, Medical Director, Joan H. Tisch Center for Women's Health said that other antioxidant-rich food or beverage will also offer similar blood pressure reduction benefits.

Recommended Reading: Can People with CKD Drink Alcohol? 

Keeping up your levels of vitamin D by exposing your face, arms, and legs to the sun about 15 minutes 3 days a week might lower your blood pressure if you're deficient according to a new study from the University of Edinburgh. The reason is that sunlight converts nitrate stored in your skin to nitric oxide (a compound that helps dilate your blood vessels) says study author Richard Weller, MD. Nonetheless those with CKD should still wear sunscreen daily especially if you are taking immunosuppressants which put CKD patients at elevated risk of skin cancer.

Recommended Reading: Unwanted Effects of Immunosuppressants and What Kidney Transplant Patients Can Do About It 

According to a Japanese study, visiting a zoo can lower systolic blood pressure (the top number) by 6%, and diastolic (the bottom number) by as much as 8%. This is because observing the animals wakes up your parasympathetic nervous system, which reduces your blood pressure to help counteract stress-induced adrenaline spikes. “We know that human warmth and contact is important in relieving stress and lowering blood pressure,” said, Dr. John Elefteriades, Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery at Yale New-Haven Hospital.

Recommended Reading: CKD Patients Should Track Their Blood Pressure Numbers 

Also, it is a misconception among those with CKD that running or lifting weights is the only exercise that counts. Squeezing a spring-loaded handgrip device, better known as a Isometric handgrip exercise, for 2 minutes at a time, repeated for a total of 12 to 15 minutes can help control your blood pressure, according the American Heart Association study review. After you contract your muscles for a couple of minutes, your body has to restore blood flow to your hands which may improve blood-vessel function, researchers say. Talk to your Nephrologists before beginning the exercise, especially if you have a fistula, but you can pick a handgrip up for as little as $8.00.

Recommended Reading: Surprising Exercise Habits That Actually Cause Major Complications In CKD Patients   

KidneyBuzz.com recommends that you continue your current healthcare plan to manage your condition including carefully monitoring your fluid intake. However, these additional strategies could assist in better maintaining control of your blood pressure. 

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References: 

Shapiro, Mark, M.D. "Blood Pressure and Peritoneal Dialysis." Http://www.davita.com/. DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc.

Tedesco, Laura. "7 Weird Ways To Lower Your Blood Pressure."Http://www.prevention.com/. Prevention Healthy Living Group.

"5 Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure." Http://www.foxnews.com/. FOX News Network