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Till couple of months back, fitness freak Siddharth (Changed Name) a 32- years old Delhi resident, was leading a very active, healthy and energetic life. He was regular to Gym for a healthy and muscular body. Along with rigorous workouts, he was advised by gym instructor to start supplements for desired fitness levels. After few months, Siddharth started losing weight and surfaced other health complications such as weak muscles and high blood pressure etc.

Siddharth consulted doctors at BLK Super Specialty Hospital and investigations revealed that his kidneys were badly affected. He was on the verge of undergoing dialysis. He was advised to stop supplements immediately. Timely medical intervention and advice averted his kidney damage but with a rider to avoid intensive exercise. His dream of having great body by consuming supplements was an eye opener for him. Now Siddharth is on medication. On the occasion of World Kidney Day, doctors strictly advise caution against taking those fitness supplements.

“When Siddharth visited me his blood pressure was 220/140mmHg which was a life threatening situation and he could have suffered a brain hemorrhage. Moreover, at that time his creatinine went upto 6.7mg/dl, we thought he might go on dialysis and immediately we stopped all his supplements,” said Dr. Sunil Prakash - Director & HoD, Nephrology and Renal Transplant Services, BLK Super Speciality Hospital.

“Once he stopped taking supplements his condition improved. In his next visits to the Hospital, his blood pressure was controlled with medication and even creatinine was reduced to 3mg/dl, which might decrease more in the future, if he keeps taking his proper medicines. Now he is living a normal but not as active life as earlier,” he added.

After treated at BLK Super Speciality Hospital, Siddharth said, “I was losing weight and feeling very weak despite of taking good care of myself. I had almost given up the hope of living a healthy and improved life with an active body, but eminent team of doctors at BLK Super Speciality Hospital provided me with the best suggestion and treatment to ensure I can re-live a normal life. I feel fortunate enough that I came to BLK Hospital on time otherwise the damage could be irreversible. I am thankful to Dr. Sunil Prakash for saving my life.”

Siddharth has been advised by the doctor not to take supplement and avoid any kind of Severe Exertion. A normal walk was prescribed for him so that he does not put on the weight which would be harmful for his health.

“The high amount of protein is not good for normal body functioning. It may trigger many unwanted disease, sometimes which can’t be cured even by medicine,” Dr Prakash cautioned.

Siddharth’s case clearly underlines lack of awareness about fitness supplement and its harmful impact on health. Body supplements are generally taken by bodybuilders, wrestlers, martial artist, and athletes to facilitate their body physique in good, healthy and attractive shape. The most commonly used body supplements are: high protein drinks, branched chained amino acid (BCAA), glutamine, arginine, fatty acids, creatine, hydroxymethylbutyric acid (HMB), and weight loss products.

As per the study, around 850 million people worldwide are now estimated to have kidney diseases from various causes. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) causes at least 2.4 million deaths per year and is now the 6th fastest growing cause of death.

As per US FDA report, there are 5000 health issues due to consuming dietary supplements (including bodybuilding supplements) which have harmful effect and causes blindness, weak muscles & bones, liver damage, and damages kidneys too.

“On World Kidney Day, we need to make concerted efforts to aware people about Kidney health. Precaution and prevention are interlinked, hence it is advisable to take all necessary care to avoid dietary supplements which may have adverse effect on health or put your kidney at high risk,” concludes Dr Prakash.  


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