Will supplements damage kidneys?

What's even more alarming, over-the-counter medications, common prescriptions, and nutritional supplements can have serious effects on kidney function. You're at greater risk if your kidneys aren't completely healthy from the start, says nephrologist Robert Heyka, MD. Many Canadians take vitamin D, especially during the dark winter months. However, you can get too much of a good thing: A man developed permanent kidney damage after taking high doses of the “sunshine vitamin,” according to a recent case study.

That's why they often recommend supplementation, although their website states that many common foods, such as milk, margarine and infant formula, are fortified with vitamin D. Taking an iron supplement can help restore red blood cell counts and prevent you from developing anemia. Nakhla recommends having a blood test to determine if you are vitamin deficient before taking the supplement, or at least talking to your pharmacist about vitamin options and possible risks, as no product is without side effects. Supplementing with blueberry tablets may pose a similar risk in people with a history of kidney stones.

Creatine supplements by bodybuilders also rose well above what is recommended for average people. Taking a vitamin D supplement can suppress the progression of chronic kidney disease and help you achieve a healthy level of vitamin D. Do not take vitamins that contain phosphorous, as this can cause complications in current kidney function and even damage your kidneys. Taking too much vitamin D can cause problems such as constipation and nausea and, in more serious cases, kidney stones and kidney damage.

In addition, kidney disease and kidney failure can change the way the body processes certain nutrients, so supplements can help ensure that you get all the nutrients you need. Because of the large amount of vitamin D the man was taking, he had an excessive amount of calcium in his blood, which caused kidney damage. The authors divided the effects of supplementation strategies on the kidney function of these athletes into several groups. People with chronic kidney disease may have low levels of vitamin D, mainly because damaged kidneys have difficulty converting vitamin D into its active form.

The effect of supplements on kidney health depends, in part, on the person's underlying health problems and the supplements being taken. It's very important to check with your healthcare provider or dietician before taking any supplement, as some can be very harmful to people with kidney disease or kidney failure. The 54-year-old man showed increased levels of creatine in the blood, suggesting kidney damage and malfunction. You should also tell your doctor and health care providers what supplements you're taking, even if they're just vitamins.

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