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Diabetes and Chronic Kidney Disease

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Did you know? Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure.

It has been estimated that more than 20 million American adults have Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD). CKD has two main causes: high blood pressure and diabetes. CKD, especially if undetected, can progress to irreversible kidney failure.

Almost half of people starting dialysis have kidney failure caused by diabetes. Diabetes can damage your kidneys. This damage can happen over many years, without you feeling it. But, even if you have diabetes, you can take steps to help keep your kidneys healthy.

  • Keep Your Kidneys Healthy by Managing Your Diabetes: Managing your diabetes is an important part of keeping your kidneys healthy. If you have diabetes, you can lower your risk for kidney disease by controlling your blood sugar and keeping your blood pressure and cholesterol at the levels set with your provider. Making healthy food choices, being more physically active, and quitting smoking if you smoke also can help keep your kidneys healthy. Losing weight if you are overweight is another way to help your kidneys.
  • Know how well your kidneys are working by getting checked for kidney disease: If you have diabetes, it is important to get checked for kidney disease. Early kidney disease usually does not have signs or symptoms. Testing is the only way to know how your kidneys are doing. Two tests are needed to check for kidney disease. A blood test checks your GFR, which tells how well your kidneys are filtering. A urine test checks for albumin in your urine. Albumin is a protein that can pass into the urine when the kidneys are damaged. The sooner you know you have kidney disease, the sooner you can get treatment to help delay or prevent kidney failure. If you have diabetes, talk to your health care provider about getting your kidneys checked.


Minority populations, particularly African Americans, Hispanic and Latino Americans, and American Indians and Alaska Natives, bear a disproportionate burden of CKD and kidney failure.

Your health is important. If you have diabetes or high blood pressure, do not forget to speak with your health care provider about kidney disease and kidney disease testing.

Source: The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases


If you have any specific questions about any medical matter, you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider.

Ruby A. Neeson Diabetes Awareness Foundation, Inc. is a Georgia-based nonprofit organization raising diabetes awareness and prevention through education, community outreach and advocacy programs. We are dedicated and committed to creating supportable, sustainable opportunities for those affected by diabetes. For information on services and organization opportunities, please visitwww.fightdiabetesnow.org.

Fight Diabetes Now- Together We Can Win!


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