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A grapefruit a day: The best thing you can do for your kidneys

by , 08 October 2013

Forget apples! If you want healthy kidneys, a new study out of the UK shows citrus fruit may be the best way to keep painful kidney cysts at bay. Here's why…

You eat citrus fruit to boost your immune system and keep colds and flu at bay. Now, you should be eating citrus fruits like grapefruit, oranges and naartjies for another reason: They help keep your kidneys healthy and happy.

To understand why, we need to take a closer look at a recent UK study.

How do citrus fruit protect you from kidney cysts?

A team of scientists from Royal Holloway University, St George’s, the University of London and Kingston University London have revealed that naringenin, a component of grapefruit and other citrus fruits, blocks the formation of kidney cysts, reports dnaindia.com.

How?

Because “naringenin regulates the PKD2 protein responsible for polycystic kidney disease”. This, in turn, blocks the cysts from forming.

That’s great news for people who suffer from kidney cysts! After all, not only can this lead to a loss of kidney function, high blood pressure and the need for dialysis, but very few treatment options are currently available, adds the Royal Holloway University’s website.

Warning: You could suffer from polycystic kidney disease and not even know!

If you think this doesn’t concern you, think again: Current statistics for the US reveals that 600,000 Americans currently suffer from polycystic kidney disease. This makes it the most common life-threatening genetic disease out there, explains medicaldaily.com. No statistics are available for South Africa, but that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear.

You see, it’s not uncommon for people to have it, without even knowing. That’s why it’s important you pay attention to the symptoms warns the Mayo Clinic. These include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Back or side pain
  • Headache
  • Increase in the size of your abdomen
  • Blood in your urine
  • Frequent urination
  • Kidney stones
  • Kidney failure
  • Urinary tract or kidney infections

If you have some of the signs and symptoms of polycystic kidney disease, get your doctor to determine what’s causing them. And don’t forget to eat a citrus fruit each day to block cyst formation.

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