There’s more to the Southern states of the USA than Nashville, Austin, and New Orleans. As a matter of fact, in recent years, many cities in the South have witnessed a massive uptick (before the pandemic) in hotels and restaurant sales. Travelers from all over the world are enchanted with the road trip style of travel, famous barbecue cuisine, and rich musical heritage.
On the other hand, when it comes down to one’s personal health, southern states may narrate a different story as year after year, they’ve constantly been ranked among the worst in the U.S. for health and wellness. It is also no surprise that the Southern U.S. states are among the top 10 hit hardest by kidney disease.
One significant reason for this mishap is the Southern diet. The lifestyle in the south is a little different than the rest of the country. Their diet generally consists of very highly processed, high in salt, high in refined carbs, fried food, eggs, processed meats, and sugary beverages.
This type of diet contributes to more kidney disease cases than any region of the country as with that lifestyle, one has a higher chance of developing diabetes which is responsible for anywhere from 40% to 60% of kidney disease.
The southern diet can be heavy on the kidneys especially a lot of fried foods which can later cause inflammation within the kidney cells. High amounts of salt can cause restriction of the arteries which are bad for the kidneys and could additionally affect blood pressure.
This is one main reason a big portion of kidney disease cases and other kidney complications are found in the southern states of the U.S. If you switch your diet, you may see a better outcome, however.
At the bare minimum, if you’re used to a southern diet, try gradually shifting over to a more whole foods diet. Having more fruits, eating a salad before your meal, sautéing, baking, steaming, boiling, instead of frying can always go a long way.
If you decide to grill, you don’t want to make whatever you’re grilling really black as it’s the blackness that becomes unhealthy. It’s not good for your kidneys and can put you at risk for other diseases. A southern diet is also said to be deadlier than other diets for people with heart disease, study shows.
In addition, lowering your salt intake would be a great start. If you’re more accustomed to a southern diet, don’t fry the foods so often, reduce the salt as much as possible, and go for more fruits and vegetables. Doing these three things alone can show positive results in helping you reduce your risk of kidney disease and other diseases.
It is critical to moderately transition this change as it may take some time in order to adapt to a healthier diet for your kidneys. Taking small steps over time will lead to substantial results.
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