Southern states make up the top 10 list of those hardest hit by kidney failure. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), more than 8% of the population in each of these states also has diagnosed diabetes, the leading cause of kidney disease.
“These states have high rates of obesity and physical inactivity. Multiple chronic diseases are highly prevalent in this geographic area, also known as the ‘stroke belt.’ Yet healthy diet combined with physical activity to maintain a healthy body weight could change the levels of kidney failure,” said Joseph Vassalotti, MD, National Kidney Foundation Chief Medical Officer.
See where your state falls on the kidney health spectrum:
Kidney Failure by U.S. Regions
Dialysis patients per million population
|1.||Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee||1537|
|2.||Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina||1497|
|5.||Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma||1371|
|6.||Maryland, Virginia, Washington D.C., West Virginia||1336|
|7.||American Samoa, Northern California, Guam, Hawaii||1299|
|9.||New Jersey, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands||1258|
|11.||Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio||1209|
|14.||Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin||1022|
|15.||Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska||983|
|16.||Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming||918|
|17.||Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont||809|
|18.||Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington||775|
During National Kidney Month in March and in honor of World Kidney Day, on March 14, the NKF offers 5 simple prevention tips, regardless of where you reside:
- Sit less and stand more. Recent research has linked sitting for 8 hours or more a day with developing kidney disease.
- Exercise and lose weight. Diabetes is responsible for 44% of all new cases of kidney failure. Obesity and type 2 diabetes are on the rise and can often be treated and reversed with physical activity and weight loss.
- Manage high blood pressure. Both considered silent killers, many people don’t realize that high blood pressure and kidney disease are linked. Controlling blood pressure levels can prevent kidney damage and failure.
- Avoid long term use of kidney-toxic drugs such as over the counter (OTC) pain medications, NSAIDS, such as ibuprofen with brand names such as Motrin, Advil, and Nuprin.
- Get tested! Ask your healthcare provider for an annual urine test to check for protein in the urine, one of the earliest signs of kidney disease, and a blood test for creatinine to calculate your estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). GFR tells how well your kidneys are working to remove wastes from your blood.