March is National Kidney Month. Yeah, that doesn't sound too glamorous, but it is important to shine a spotlight on something we all take for granted.
A few years ago one of my friends died of kidney disease. I remember when he was fourteen and was diagnosed with diabetes. As kids we just thought he had to give up Cokes, cake, and candy. Tough, but doable. Little did any of us know the impact that insidious disease can have on the human body or the quality of one's life. Nor did we know how diabetes can incapacitate a body or take life away long before the body is old.
Unfortunately, millions of Americans can walk around with kidney disease and not even know it until it's almost too late. Because of this, each year when you have a physical, you should request simple blood and urine tests to make sure your kidneys are healthy. The sooner you can diagnose a problem; the sooner you can take action to correct the problem. You may possibly avert major organ failure.
There's more info online at Kidney.org or the National Kidney Foundation at 1-800-622-9010.
If you're healthy and you have the means, donate a gift of money to the foundation. Consider becoming an organ donor. I know that's a hot button for many people, but do consider it.
My friend needed a transplant. He was on the list, but the list is long. His body couldn't wait. Bubba Bruce. Gone before his time, but not forgotten.