Regular exercise could reduce kidney disease risk in people with diabetes

Jack Woodfield
Tue, 04 Dec 2018
Regular exercise could reduce kidney disease risk in people with diabetes
Aerobic exercise could help reduce the risk of someone with diabetes developing kidney disease, researchers have suggested.

Otherwise known as renal disease, kidney disease is a complication of diabetes, but the risk of kidney disease can be prevented by maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

A US research team has carried out a study involving rats to explore the impact exercise can have on kidney disease.

The researchers split a combination of obese and lean animals into two groups, one which exercised and the other encouraged to be sedentary.

The active group ran on a treadmill for between 45-60 minutes on a daily basis across five days a week whereas the sedentary group undertook 15 minutes of treadmill exercise twice a week.

The findings showed the active rodents had improved blood vessel health and kidney function. The obese rats - irrespective of their group - had scarring on their renal arteries, higher levels of protein in their urine and fat deposits around the kidneys. But all those symptoms improved in the obese rats which had been exercising. There were also improved higher levels of calcium and copper in their bones.

The researchers wrote: "The introduction of an exercise program based in [aerobic interval training] is a good strategy to present alterations in kidney structure and urinary parameters caused by obesity and the development of diabetic [kidney disease] in obese Zucker rats."

It is possible to detect kidney damage in those with diabetes with a blood and urine test, which should be included in an annual health review, which is why it is so important for people with diabetes to attend every appointment.

The tests are used to screen for tiny particles of protein, called 'microalbumin', which indicates the first stages of kidney disease.

To prevent damage, it is recommended those with diabetes maintain good blood glucose and blood pressure, as well as to stop smoking, eat healthy and get regular exercise.

The findings of the trial were published ahead of print in the American Journal of Physiology-Renal Physiology, and was selected as an APS select article for December.
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