Studies: Obesity puts a heavy strain on our kidneys - more and more Germans with kidney diseases

Studies: Obesity puts a heavy strain on our kidneys - more and more Germans with kidney diseases

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Hypertension and obesity promote kidney disease
The Germans are getting fatter. Being overweight usually means that those affected feel less fit. Health risks are also increased. On the occasion of World Kidney Day, experts point out that being overweight is also a significant risk factor for kidney diseases.

More and more Germans are too fat
More and more people worldwide are overweight and obese. This has a drastic impact on health. Excessive obesity can lead to numerous concomitant or secondary diseases. Among other things, on the kidneys, as announced by the German Society for Sewing Prology (DGfN) on the occasion of World Kidney Day on March 9th. The aim of the worldwide action day is to put the prevention of kidney diseases in the foreground.

Kidney failure can affect anyone
According to a company statement, over 100,000 people in Germany are currently dependent on a kidney replacement procedure - dialysis or transplantation.

“Kidney failure can affect anyone, but people who are overweight are particularly at risk. The number of kidney tissue damage caused by obesity has increased tenfold in the past 30 years, ”write the experts.

Obesity goes to the kidneys
Overweight is not only a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, it also goes to the kidneys.

An indirect connection has been known for a long time: Obese people often suffer from high blood pressure - and this damages the fine blood vessels in the kidneys, which filter the toxins from our body.

As the DGfN explains, the function of the kidneys then decreases steadily until those affected are dependent on kidney replacement therapy.

Up to 40 percent of diabetics have kidney damage
According to the information, kidney disease in one third of all dialysis patients is due to high blood pressure. In addition, overweight people often develop diabetes mellitus.

This metabolic disorder often results in chronic kidney disease. According to the DGfN, around 30 to 40 percent of diabetics have kidney damage. Diabetes mellitus causes more than 2,000 patients to go on dialysis each year, the release said.

The experts refer to information published on the “Stop Diabetes” portal.

Effects of obesity
It is now known that obesity directly damages the kidneys.

As explained in the DGfN communication, adipose tissue secretes various peptide hormones such as adiponectin, leptin and resistin, which lead to inflammation and oxidative stress, negatively affect fat metabolism and result in increased insulin levels, often also insulin resistance.

These mechanisms lead to pathological changes in the kidney tissue (so-called glomerulopathies) and consequently to a decrease in kidney function.

Prevention needs to be further strengthened
The number of glomerulopathies caused by obesity has increased tenfold since 1986, according to a current report in the journal "Kidney International".

"This gives us cause for concern," explains DGfN President Prof. Dr. med. Mark Dominik Alscher. Because “it is known that being overweight is literally an increasing problem in our society. People are getting fatter, and the number of obese children and adolescents has also increased. In order not to experience an explosion in dialysis numbers, we have to further intensify our prevention efforts. ”

The public must be made aware of this problem and the population must be motivated to adopt a healthier lifestyle, but nephrological early detection measures must also be intensified.

The progression of the disease can be slowed down
If chronic kidney disease is recognized in time,
their progression can be slowed down by medication and the need for kidney replacement therapy can often be delayed for years.

However, kidney diseases are often diagnosed late because they usually initially have no clear symptoms.

In most patients, the first symptoms such as high blood pressure, foaming or bloody urine due to increased protein excretion and anemia appear very late when the organ is already significantly impaired in its function.

Kidney disease is one of the most common causes of blood in the urine.

Water in the legs (edema), nausea and vomiting, and tiredness can also indicate kidney problems.

Early detection has improved significantly
The DGfN press spokesman, Prof. Jan Galle, also explains in the release why dialysis numbers have remained stable in spite of the increase in overweight people in the past decades:

“There are three main reasons for this. On the one hand, the war and post-war generation is now in the "dialysis age" - and in this the problem of obesity was often not as pronounced, and it is also numerically smaller than the generation of the "Baby Boomers". Secondly, many patients do not reach the "final stage" of dialysis, but die prematurely from heart and vascular diseases - our dialysis patients are therefore the "survivors". "

The positive news: “The third reason for the stable number of dialysis patients is that the early detection of chronic kidney disease has improved significantly in the past decade. The family doctors provide competent care for patients with slightly impaired kidney function and refer risk patients who need specialist medical care to the nephrologist in good time. "

Keep body weight in the normal range
According to the information, the "Disease Management Program Diabetes" also ensured that the kidney function of diabetics, a main risk group for kidney diseases, is checked regularly.

"This recipe for success needs to be continued," said Prof. Alscher. "Regular kidney function checks should not only be carried out in diabetics and the elderly, but also closely in all patients with high blood pressure or overweight!"

However, the most important preventive measure remains to keep your body weight in the normal range - and to keep it in the long term. (ad)

Author and source information

Video: Dr Jason Fung on Diabetic Kidney Disease (May 2022).


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