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Nephritis and Diet as Cause and Cure



Kidney damage can occur from a variety of causes. We have to focus on those that are within our control. Atherosclerosis in the arteries of the kidneys is promoted by cholesterol and fats and this is one of the main causes for kidney failure. Stir into the mix high blood pressure or diabetes and we are asking for kidney problems or failure.

The most important toxic threat to the kidneys that we must consider is the voluminous quantities of proteins that are eaten by the average consumer of the standard American diet. The daily onslaught of more proteins than are needed by the body means that the kidneys will be tasked with eliminating the excess. The body can store fats, but we have no mechanism for storing excess proteins.

The proteins not implemented for growth and repair of the body drift around in the bloodstream until the liver metabolizes them and their remains are eliminated by the kidneys. Nephrons are the filtering units in the kidneys. Nephrons are destroyed by exposure to these proteins and to the remnants of their having been metabolized.  Kidney damage from excessive consumption of proteins is so widespread that an otherwise healthy person will see 25 to 50% of their functional kidney capacity completely destroyed after eight decades of eating the rich American diet. We are fortunate to have reserve kidney tissue to rely upon. Kidneys can function with only 25% of nephrons remaining and so the damaged failing kidneys remain unnoticed.

However, the damage and destruction cannot go on forever. This destructive effect resulting from a diet high in proteins becomes a serious life and death concern for someone who has already lost kidney tissue from one or more other causes. A person with physical injury, high blood pressure, diabetes, atherosclerosis or surgical loss will be put at a great disadvantage. It is most unfortunate that most persons suffering from loss of kidney function are not given instruction on the value of maintaining a low protein diet.

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