Glad this is FINALLY GETTING SOME ATTENTION..

Diabetes. High blood pressure or hypertension.  Kidney disease.  What are these?  Is there a common denominator?  There can be.

Recently, the White House signed an executive order aimed at defraying the cost of kidney treatment; i.e. dialysis.

However, if you were to ask the casual observer or listener “how exactly do you wind up on dialysis?” few would know.  Unless they themselves or close relative or friend utilized dialysis, they would be hard pressed to answer.

Do you know?

For most of my nursing career, this was my specialty.  All apologies to those of you who’ve heard this story before.

Over the next couple of posts, I will be touching on the topics of diabetes, hypertension, and how they can be major players in kidney disease.  After all, it is a direct lead in to why I do what I do today.

So, if this is something that is of interest to you, or you have been diagnosed with any or all of these, stay tuned.  This ride, I promise won’t be as bumpy.  After all, if you are living with any of these, your ride is bumpy enough.

 

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

 

Questions? Comments? Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com

 

 

Listen to your heart…

meditating beauty  In order to renew a license as a registered nurse, you are required (at least in the state of Illinois) to complete CEs.  This refers to continuing education.  While completing this requirement, a topic surfaced I confess, I thought little about–WOMEN & HEART DISEASE.

As most of you know by now, my career has taken a different turn.  I started out as most do, working in a hospital.  From there, caring for chronic renal failure patients, is where I headed next.  In this field, I’ve worked as a staff nurse, charge nurse, educator, and clinical liaison.  I have taught and written classes.  To students, fellow nurses, and physicians I have explained the ins and outs of dialysis, as well as the possible causes of CKD (chronic kidney disease).  All the while reminding those who needed it, that dialysis is not a cure–or substitution for functioning kidneys.

Now my full-time endeavors are geared towards prevention.

Renal nursing taught me two things–very early on.  Diabetes & hypertension are the #1 and #2 contributors to CKD.  They both wreak havoc on the kidneys; but the latter is particularly heinous–and rampant among women of color.

Women, and particularly those who share my background, are almost non-existent when discussing symptoms, and undergoing clinical trials.  If you are discussing heart disease, men are always the standard. Ladies, if your symptoms don’t match up to your male counterparts having a heart attack–you may be SOL.

With that in mind, keep these questions in mind.  Hypertension, cardiovascular disease, diabetes–a little extra weight–what’s the big deal? I exercise, but the weight (and the scale) just aren’t moving.  Now what?  Can’t I just pop a pill to fix it?  For the answer, stay tuned.   But fair warning, it’s going to be a bumpy and startling ride.

CHUNKING IT OUT

I once had a boss who coined this term.  She used it often; when our cup was overflowing with work–yet she was about to fill it more.  “CHUNK IT OUT,” she would say.  Well, that’s what I’m going to do here.

This material wasn’t easy for me to assimilate; or even hear.  Yet I believe it relevant enough in which to devote a few posts.  I hope you agree.

Depending upon how this goes, I will be addressing other topics like this; but fitness and nutrition remain my focus.

The intention of this blog is not to diagnose, or serve as a substitute for medical advice.  My main objective is prevention through lifestyle intervention and modification.  As a nurse, personal trainer, and educator, I do believe however, it is my duty to inform.  In upcoming posts, I will be doing just that.

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

Questions? Comments?  Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com

 

Food for thought: Obesity as a disease?

healthy living waterfall  We’ve all heard it.  Infomercials touting the latest gadget to prepare healthier food, to campaigns in communities to fight the “obesity epidemic. ”  You can’t escape.  Obesity is public enemy number one.

As a renal nurse, I am well acquainted with how most of the dialysis population found their way to their present circumstance.  In short–diabetes and hypertension, and usually a combination thereof.  I’ve seen patients (at times in less than a year) go from losing a toe, to a foot, and eventually become a BKA (below the knee amputee).  So now, they contend with the complications of renal failure, AND face life without use of a limb.

For this reason and many others, I traded my uniform for workout gear.

A major part of nursing is education, as well as preventative care.  I have worked as a dialysis educator, classroom instructor, and now I see myself in the preventative arena.  It may not be the way most of my colleagues see prevention.  But we all play on the same team; just with different approaches.

Every type of disease wreaks havoc in its own way.  However, I wonder how obesity fits in.  Yes, it has far-reaching implications–but does it really fit the description of a disease?  Maybe.  Though I have a few questions.  How would this classification work anyway?  Do we assign stages to it–like renal failure or cancer?  How would insurance companies handle this?  Would they? Should it be considered a pre-existing condition if you begin/change insurance?  Will there be specialists in this field?  Treatment and patient compliance face dilemmas all their own on this one.

Take a look at http://mercola.com. “Why Branding Obesity as a Disease is a step in the WRONG direction.”  The article is dated July 6, 2013.   It has interesting perspectives on who benefits by calling this weighty issue a disease.

In the meantime, consider who benefits by regular exercise, proper nutrition, and a reform in habit.  I can give you one hint–it’s not those who would benefit from calling obesity a disease.

All for now.  Keep up and keep at it.

Be sure to check out my ABOUT page.  Questions?  Comments?  Contact me at serrenity.c@gmail.com