A few days back I read news that a teenager had consumed 4 liters of power drink in a span of 16 hours while taking part in some computer games competition and this lead to failure of his kidneys placing him on critical list.
This set me thinking that most of us when we talk of health we talk about heart, liver or lungs. We say that so and so cooking oil/ food/ fruit is good for heart or overdrinking/ fatty food is bad for liver or smoking/ pollution adversely affects our lungs. How many of us ever speak about kidneys?
Let me now share with you all my own experience which has opened my eyes, though a bit too late.
Last year one fine morning in early February I just did not feel like getting up from bed. I did not want to eat anything. The previous night I had attended wedding of a nephew in NCR. I did not wish to drive at night, so we went by taxi. I thought may be I was exhausted. A couple of days of the same situation our son forced me to go with him to see our doctor. I was advised ultra scan as well as blood test. Next day he collected blood test reports. On seeing the reports doctor told that I be taken to hospital immediately. I was thus hospitalized.
In the next two days some tests were carried out. I was then told that my kidneys were severely infected and were almost non functional. Luckily I responded to medicines and was sent home after 3 weeks. During this period I had to undergo dialysis half a dozen times. I was told that though my kidneys have started functioning almost normal but I would have to carry on taking medicines as well as come for review every month and blood test every quarter. This was as kidneys had not been able to purify my blood during that period leading to composition of blood going haywire. My hemoglobin had gone down to 9 while potassium, sodium and some other components went much beyond upper limits. High potassium in blood leads to erratic heart functioning, may even cause heart to stop. A lot of restrictions were put on my diet. No leafy vegetables, no tomatoes or sauce, no cucumber, no fruit or fruit juice, no dry fruit, just a couple of cups of tea in a day and NO DRINKS which I used to take in moderate quantity – three or four small Old Monks in the evening due to low blood pressure and enjoyed a bottle of beer on Sunday afternoons. I loved to have a tetrapack of fruit juice, mostly tomato, with breakfast everyday and fruit, specially Banana, after meals but no more now. It was only after a few months and after blood tests that I was allowed to have guava, papaya or apple in little quantity but still no juice. A month later I was permitted two or three small drinks due to my blood pressure going low often at night. On next review I was permitted to have very limited quantity of tomatoes in preparation of vegetables and small sachet of tomato sauce once a week only but no raw ones. I am still continuing with medicines – 11 pills a day, as well as reviews as told. My stamina has gone down making me feel tired even without undertaking much of hard physical work.
Though it was not pinpointed as to what was the cause but in general it was felt that I may have been taking some food which when digested added some extra nutrients into blood causing unwanted stress on kidneys while filtering blood - could be regular drinking packed fruit juice/ having fruit regularly after meals .
So friends, it is better to know what caution to take for safeguarding our kidneys than to suffer.