5 Common Myths About Kidney Disease Prevention

January 26, 2018, 4:41pm EST

Not all prevention tips are created equal, and while drinking water regularly and keeping a healthy diet are still great guideposts, some prevention myths have gained a little too much momentum. We’re here to find the clarity within the clutter and help keep your kidney disease prevention game on point.

Myth #1: Sodium Phosphate Can Detox the Kidneys 

Sodium phosphate is used to clean out your colon before a test, and pills can be used for constipation. Sodium phosphate is also used in processed foods to keep them fresh. But it certainly doesn’t detox your kidneys! In fact, taking sodium phosphate as a drug can be dangerous for people with kidney disease.
On the other hand, sodium bicarbonate (AKA baking soda) is useful for some people with kidney disease. For them, baking soda makes the blood less acid, which slows the progression of kidney disease. However, people with healthy kidneys should NOT eat baking soda! Just use it as a pampering foot bath or mix it with vinegar to unclog a pesky drain!

Myth #2: Cranberry Juice Prevents or Cures Urinary Tract Infections

Long thought to be a home remedy for urinary tract infections, cranberry juice has a cult following as a magic, if not so delicious, drink. Although cranberry juice has acidic properties that helps get rid of germs in the bladder the evidence is not strong enough to say that it can either prevent or cure urinary tract infections. The safer choice? Don’t follow your taste buds and check in with your healthcare professional for the best treatment. Treating urinary tract infections early and correctly WILL prevent kidney disease!

Myth #3: Hydration Is The Key To Prevention

While drinking enough water is a great way to help your everyday health, it is just one way of keeping your kidneys healthy. Some people think that the more water they drink the better, but there is such a thing as drinking too much water which can lead to low blood sodium levels. So, while drinking water is important to keep your body healthy and happy, don’t overdo it and don’t’ rely on hydration alone.

Myth #4: Papaya Is The Only Fruit You Need

We often praise Papaya for being high in vitamin C. There are also claims that papaya helps control blood creatinine levels and eases muscle cramping, but these are no studies in humans to prove this. Too much of a good thing can sometimes have unplanned results and too much vitamin C can lead to kidney stones. Bottom line? Eat papaya in moderation and don’t forget about other fruits!

Myth #5: Vitamins and Supplements Boost Your Kidney Health

While your mother may swear by echinacea and goldenseal to stop a new cold, herbal supplements may have bad effects on kidney health, especially for those who already have kidney disease.  Avoid the supplement aisle if you want to lend a helping hand to your kidneys and ask your healthcare professional which vitamin supplement is right for you.