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kidney health, biomarkers, function

Kidney Health: The Three Biomarkers You Should Be Aware Of

Written by: Kiara Lipschitz



Time to read 5 min

Keywords: kidney health, biomarkers, function

Why is kidney health so important to manage properly, and what is its impact on global health? Let us take a look into the essential functions of the kidneys, the diseases they help prevent, and the lifestyle choices that can contribute to their optimal performance, as well as explore the broader impacts of kidney health on overall well-being, including the importance of key biomarkers like eFGR, Urea, and Creatinine. Let us dive into it!

1.The Role of Kidneys in Bodily Processes

The kidneys are a crucial part of the body's filtration system.

They  filter about half a cup of blood every minute, removing waste and excess water to produce urine.

This process helps to regulate the body's salt, water, and other chemical levels , maintaining the correct fluid levels for the body to function optimally.

Additionally, kidneys produce and regulate important hormones that control blood pressure , red blood cell production , and calcium uptake from the intestine.

By performing these functions, well-functioning kidneys help prevent a range of diseases, including hypertension , anemia , and bone diseases . Therefore, maintaining kidney health is critical for overall well-being.

kidney health, biomarkers, function

2. Maintaining Kidney Health Through Lifestyle Choices

Maintaining kidney health is largely dependent on lifestyle choices.

A balanced diet, regular exercise, and limited alcohol consumption are key factors that contribute to healthy kidneys.

A diet rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains can help maintain optimal kidney function.

Avoiding processed foods , which often contain high levels of sodium and saturated fats , is also beneficial.

Regular exercise, such as walking, cycling, or swimming, can help control blood pressure and maintain a healthy weight, both of which are essential for kidney health.

Limiting alcohol consumption can prevent kidney damage and other health issues.

However, it's important to note that individual needs and preferences can vary greatly, and what works for one person may not work for another. Therefore, it's recommended to consult with a healthcare professional or a dietitian who specialises in kidney health to determine the best diet and exercise regimen for you. 

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3. Understanding eGFR, Urea, and Creatinine as Biomarkers of Kidney Health

The Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate (eGFR) is a crucial biomarker in assessing kidney function.

It measures the level of kidney function and helps determine the stage of kidney disease. An eGFR below 60 for three months or more, or an eGFR above 60  could indicate kidney damage.

Urea and Creatinine are waste products filtered out of the blood by the kidneys . High levels  of these substances may indicate that the kidneys are not working effectively.

Regular monitoring of these three biomarkers can help detect kidney disease early, enabling timely interventions to slow or stop kidney damage.

kidney health, biomarkers, function

4. Urea as a Kidney Health Biomarker

Urea, a waste product formed in the liver following protein metabolism, is a key biomarker for kidney health.

It is expelled from the body through urine, but  is not the same as urine.

The kidneys play a vital role in filtering urea out of the blood, thus, high levels  of urea can indicate kidney damage or disease.

The Blood Urea Nitrogen  (BUN) test is commonly used to measure the amount of urea in the blood. Normal BUN levels vary but generally range from 7 to 20 mg/dL .

However, BUN levels can also be influenced by factors such as a high-protein diet , certain medications, and conditions like heart failure or gastrointestinal bleeding .

It's important to note that while abnormal urea levels can be a sign of kidney issues, they are not definitive and further tests may be required for a conclusive diagnosis. 

5. The Role of Creatinine in Kidney Health

Creatinine, another crucial biomarker for kidney health, is a waste product  generated from muscle metabolism.

The kidneys are responsible for filtering creatinine out of the blood  and excreting it through urine.

Therefore, high levels of creatinine in the blood can be indicative of impaired kidney function.

The normal range for creatinine in the blood may be 0.84 to 1.21 milligrams per deciliter, although this can vary depending on factors such as age, gender, and body size.

It's important to note that while a single high reading could be due to a high-protein diet or strenuous exercise, consistently high levels typically indicate kidney damage or disease

kidney health, biomarkers, function

6. The Importance of Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate (eGFR) in Kidney Health

Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate (eGFR) is a crucial biomarker that measures your level of kidney function and determines your stage of kidney disease.

It's calculated using a formula that includes your creatinine level, age, gender, and race.

An eGFR below 60 for three months or more , or an eGFR above 60  with kidney damage (marked by high levels of albumin in your urine) means chronic kidney disease.

It's important to note that factors such as pregnancy , being over the age of 70 , unusual muscle mass , and certain diseases and medications can affect eGFR.

Regular monitoring of eGFR is essential, especially if you have risk factors for kidney disease. If your eGFR is abnormal, your healthcare provider may order additional tests to assess kidney damage or find the cause. 

7. A Balanced View of Kidney Health Biomarkers

While kidney health biomarkers like urea, creatinine, and eGFR are invaluable tools in the detection and management of kidney diseases, it's crucial to remember that they provide only a partial view of kidney health.

These biomarkers are not definitive diagnostic tools, but rather indicators that may suggest the presence of kidney disease.

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Our in-depth Kidney Blood Test analyzes your body's natural filtration system. It measures key biomarkers including:

  • Urea: A waste product from protein breakdown, high levels can indicate kidney issues.

  • Creatinine: Indicates muscle health, and abnormal levels may suggest kidney problems.

  • eGFR: Estimates your kidney function, helping assess overall kidney health.

Take control of your well-being! Our Kidney Blood Test helps you understand how your kidneys are function ing – a crucial step towards peak performance.

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